Family lacking light but not gratitude

With only a torch to guide her, 68-year-old Tupu Taito lights a fire for her family’s breakfast around five o’clock in the morning.

Every morning she makes sure that her grandchildren whom she raises as her own have something to eat before heading to school.

Her daughter and son-in-law also lives with her in their small home, made of wood and iron roofing.

“Our family does not have access to electricity so during night times we use flash lights to work our way in the dark and also during early mornings,” she said.

The elderly mother-of-nine from Malie stated that they also do not have access to water.

“It is because the water supply was disconnected due to a water bill of more than $1,000 by family members who stayed at our place before.

“We fetch water from our neigbours which we are very grateful for using four buckets each day.

“My family depends greatly on our plantation for a living both for food supplies and also income.”

She said that when the children are at school, her normal chores include collecting coconuts and cocoa to sell.

“If we are fortunate we can get $100 a week and that is more than enough. I am always active so sometimes I weed the grass around the house or do some laundry.

“I enjoy doing all these chores; it makes me stronger and helps me live longer. I am a very hardworking person because I believe that if I do not work I become sick easily by just sitting around and be lazy.”

When asked about how her family will spend White Sunday, she said that they will attend church just like any Samoan family.

“When people talk about what to get the children for their special day, my belief is that the greatest gift is life and we must thank God that the children are alive and well.

“But that will not stop me from cooking a nice meal for them with whatever we can get our hands on and yes, their parents will provide their clothes and shoes.

“Children are God’s gift to their parents and for me my greatest joy is caring for my grandchildren. I thank God that no harm has come to them but they are strong and healthy.”

She added that despite living in a small home, they are grateful for everything they have because it keeps them going and we continue on living life.

If you are willing to help the family of Ms. Taito please contact the number: 7247798.


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