Magiagi farmer inspired by his mother

Trust in the Lord and cast your cares unto him because he knows what we need.

People have different ways of dealing with the cost of living. 

For Saolotoga Tumusa Bruce, the 33-year-old from Magiagi believes prayers go hand in hand with hard work.

He is a farmer and he works hard every day. 

 “I grew up knowing that farming was the backbone of my family,” he told the Village Voice. 

“We used to have cocoa, copra, bananas where my father would sell to support us.”

Today, that’s what Saolotoga is continuing.

And although there are many challenges, he remains optimistic. 

“I know there’s a good market out there for what I produce.”

Saolotoga used to work as a gardener for another family.

But he resigned because he realised he could make more money if he did his own thing.

And on that journey, he has learnt a lot.

 “You see farmers are constantly adapting to the changing and extreme weather patterns. We have to be prepared. There is a time of drought and then there is flooding.”

 “Here at Magiagi, whenever there is a heavy rainfall the flood sweep away our plants.” 

But the weather conditions are not the only challenges.

“We need the equipment to improve our work,” he said. “But we can’t afford it because it is so expensive. So we do what we can with what we have.” 

He knows he cannot give up.

“This is the only income for my family. If we stop doing it because we can’t afford the equipment, to be honest we will starve.” 

Saolotoga walks five miles everyday to his plantation. On his way back, he has to carry a load of taro and firewood for his family.

But he is happy.

“Life doesn’t have to be expensive,” he said.

 “You see I don’t have a job, and my family depends on what I earn from selling taro.” 

“The way I see it, living is what you make it. Sometimes I get tired but my mother is my inspiration.”

“I don’t have a wife or kids but I do have a mother to take care of and I make sure everything she needs and wants are there.” 

“You see, to be a farmer is the hardest job but if you believe that you are meant to do that job, then you can do it.”

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