Mother fights challenges for family and love
The struggles Samoans go through to make ends meet is nothing new.
For Alofagia Afiafi, she says it’s all about love and making sure families are looked after.
The 45-year-old from Siusega is one of the businesswomen at the Vaitele market who has been forced from the inner Vaitele market to sell their fruits on the other side.
It’s been tough, she said.
“My husband and I don’t work but we do have a small market to sell fruits for money,” she said.
“Since we shifted here, the sales have been very low.”
But that’s not the only challenge.
“When the weather is challenging, we’d rather sit outside the rain and sell the fruits.”
“I’m thankful we’re given a place to sell fruits but to be honest, the market should have been our place. It’s safer and the space is good for our customers.”
Alofagia said she understands the government’s logic.
But she wishes they were consulted first and considered.
“I was very disappointed when we were told to move out,” she said. “Because I knew this would happen.”
But she is strong and she will not allow what’s happened to get her down.
“I have to accept that this is the way it is.”
“Let’s all hope it works out well in the end.”
The cost of living, she said, is crazy.
“I can’t stress enough how expensive life is nowadays,” Alofagia said.
“We sell fruits to earn money but things are very expensive so many times we can’t afford what we need.”
Alofagia agrees that poverty is in Samoa.
“I admit my family is struggling and there is poverty in Samoa,” she said.
“My family doesn’t have much and that’s why we work hard.”
“Our earning from the market does help the family but it’s not enough. We have children to put through school and other things we need our money for but we can’t afford anything most of the time.”