Family feels pain of job losses
With hundreds of people in Samoa out of jobs as a result of the coronavirus pandemic lockdown, families are starting to feel the pinch.
Among them is the family of Tilomai Ah-Siu, at Vaitoloa, who told the Samoa Observer that her husband was a groundsman for a local hotel.
"It's been very tough since he was out of work," she said. “So far, there is no money flowing in but more money going out for expenses."
The mother of five said their biggest worry is not being able to keep electricity funning and food supplies.
It is why they have turned to working the land.
“We are trying to develop our plantation and vegetable garden for food," she said. "We are also trying to earn some income by selling the harvest but it is too early. It would take some weeks or months for the harvest to be ready.”
The 31-year-old mother said they cannot wait for the State of Emergency orders to be lifted.
“My main concern is the welfare of my children in terms of food supplies. I am also caring for my 74-year-old father together with my husband.”
“I am very happy that during our times of need, the children are not attending school because money would be needed for food daily.”
She added that November of last year during the measles epidemic she lost one of her children.
“I lost my one-year-old baby to measles and our family has been slowly recovering from that traumatic experience.
“Due to our family struggling so much, I decided to call Samoa Victim Support Group’s (S.V.S.G.) Helpline for help."
Mrs. Ah-Siu’s family is one of more than nine families that received assistance from S.V.S.G. and donors.
The S.V.S.G. partnered with the United Nations Children's Fund (U.N.I.C.E.F.) and United Nations Development Programme’s (U.N.D.P.) Spotlight Initiative to help.
Mrs. Ah-Siu thanked S.V.S.G. and its partners for helping their family amidst the times of hardships for her family.
"The assistance given through S.V.S.G. is greatly appreciated and not every day you receive help when in need. May God bless those who have the hearts to help others during these difficult times."