Apia Union’s new look

The Apia Rugby Union’s (A.R.U.) National Provincial Championship (N.P.C) squad will be the stuff of envy when the tournament kicks off.

Buzzing with excitement on Wednesday evening, the players are anxious to get on the field so they can show off their brand new jerseys.

A total of $50,000 and new Jerseys courtesy of Taula Beverages was presented to the A.R.U. at the J.P’s Fitness Centre Bar and Restaurant, Vaimea.

Taula’s Marketing Manager, Caroline Pereira, said the sponsorship is an investment in rugby.

The Apia Union is all about training our local players,” she said. “This has resulted in reps now in our Manu Sevens squad. We also have Apia Union reps in the in our Manu 15’s squad.

“So with that in mind; with Taula being a 100% locally owned company, we feel that this is a great opportunity to contribute to local sports through the Apia Union and all the great work they have been doing.”

The donation is the start of the partnership between Taula and A.R.U. but the company is no stranger when it comes to extending a helping hand to the rugby community.

“This year we have been very active with our support for rugby through sponsorships; an example would be our sponsorship of the Manu Samoa team who played Georgia.

“There have been a lot of changes in Samoa; our beer has evolved, we have perfected our beer and with us being 100% owned locally this is just another way we can give back to the community.”

According to Ms. Pereira, Taula understands that Samoan Rugby is held in such high esteem by the world which is why any support towards its future is warranted.

“Samoa is well known for its rugby,” she said. “Through the hard work by our boys in blue on the international stage, we as a company feel that the support of our Manu boys as well as the future Manu is very important.”

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College hosts Samoan language week

Samoa College will mark its inaugural Samoan language week in a bid to draw its students’ attention to the country’s cultural practices and customs. College Principal Karene Faasisila, Vice Principal and staff are behind the week-long program of activities that also include the ava ceremony and cultural formalities (folafola sua, folafola toana’i, folafolaga saumolia, sula toga). According to Taumaloto Kaisa, who is a teacher at Samoa College, the program involves the whole school and doesn’t just target the teaching staff. "The college’s principal, Karene Faasisila, vice-principal and staff have initiated a Samoan Week activity not only to end off another academic term but also to highlight the importance of Samoan practices to the students," he told Samoa Observer in an interview. "The program isn’t only for the teachers teaching Samoa or is limited to students who only take Samoa. It involves the whole school with the aim of emphasising Samoan cultural practices because we have seen that some students haven’t experienced most of our practices." The week-long program this week comprises five main categories of activities that will run until Thursday. Category 1 activities highlight the importance of Samoan literacy through speech competitions, impromptu speech competitions, spelling competitions and debates. Category 2 focuses on cultural formalities such as the ava ceremony and others (folafola sua, folafola toana’i, folafolaga saumolia, sula toga) and Category 3 is Samoan sports and games such as cricket, collecting coconuts and weaving baskets. Mr Kaisa said it is important students experience and participate in Samoan sports and games in order to find out more about their origins. "The importance of students experiencing these sports is because there are a few Samoan statements that derive from Samoan games which are incorporated in speeches and formalities,” he added. "It’s important that the students experience these sports so that they’ll know where these statements come from and what it practically means. "The fourth category is a demonstration of handcrafting, weaving and printing. Students are taught on how to weave various Samoan crafts (ma’ilo, polavai, polasisi)." Students would learn the art of weaving an ietoga (Samoan traditional fine mat) and instead of tapa-making, consequently Mr Kaisa said the college had found it difficult locating an expert in that area who could teach the students which is why the elei printing activity was added. All the four categories will be implemented Monday to Thursday before the staff and student body converge on the college hall on Friday where there will be traditional performances with classes competing against each other.

By Hyunsook Siutaia 30/09/2020
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