Rugby stars donate to measles-hit families

Rugby stars both past and present donated over $52,000 tala to families who have lost loved ones due to Samoa’s measles epidemic.

Samoan All Blacks Sonny Bill Williams, Jerome Kaino, Ardie Savea, Sa’u Patrick Tuipulotu, their Tongan-born teammate Ofa Tu’ungafasi, former Wallaby Quade Cooper and Manu Samoa and All Black Legend Sir La’auli Michael Jones have set up a Givealittle page encouraging others to give as well.

“Our hearts are heavy and hurting at this time for our people in Samoa,” the page says.

“Every cent of every dollar gifted (excluding the Givealittle service fee) will be given directly to each of these families who have lost a loved one.”

La’auli is to coordinate the delivery of each donation to the direct family of each victim of measles with the assistance of medical personnel in Samoa.

“We are hoping by the holiday period these families will have received their fair allocated share of the total funds we collect as a result of all our combined love and support,” the page says.

On top of the NZ$30,000 donation from the players, the page is to be open for about 10 days for others to give to the families.

As of press time, $57,954 tala had been raised through the page.

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