Only Samoan HMAS Choules returns home for the first time
Juvantus Faamausili is the only Samoan amongst a crew of over 100 on board the Royal Australian Navy ship HMAS Choules that is currently in port and will be in Samoa for seven days.
The 22-year-old was born in New Zealand to Samoan parents Helen and Samasoni Faamausili but has never been to Samoa before.
HMAS Choules is in Samoa as part of Australia's continued support for Samoa’s key security priorities and disaster preparedness efforts and also to refuel and restock food supplies and a chance for crew members to explore Samoa and interact with the locals.
Mr. Faamausili said that he has been in the Royal Australian Navy (R.A.N.) for three years and has mostly worked on the ship in duties similar to hospitality.
“I assist with functions and also hands on with specials on flight deck. I joined the navy because no one has done it in my family but my twin brother Tyrique Faamausili is in the army,” he said.
“My family is from Samoa, my grandparents moved to New Zealand and I feel special coming back to Samoa because I am the only Samoan on the ship.
“Samoa looks beautiful, I know a few of my relatives here so I will probably have the time to catch up with them but I am not aware of the villages I am from here.
“One of the difficulties and challenges faced by being in the navy is being separated from family and away from them out in the sea.”
When asked about the benefits of being in the navy, he said that it provides great opportunities to travelling to different countries in the south pacific.
“If I was not in the navy, I would not have been able to travel to Samoa for the first time and when I first discovered I was coming to Samoa I was just extremely excited, I even told my mother and she was keen for me coming.
“At the moment, I stay in Gold Coast, Queensland in Australia.”