Savai’i candidate raises funds on U.S. site

A Savai'i candidate has already raised over $1,000 in crowdfunding using the world’s largest platform American-registered Go Fund Me.

Unasa Viane Toala, 36, of Siufaga, Lefaga and Savai’i – who is contesting the Faasaleleaga No. 4 Constituency under the Faatuatua i le Atua Samoa ua Tasi (F.A.S.T.) party banner – has already raised $1,385.19 (US$550) according to information published on gofundme.com.

Unasa is a former Assistant Chief Executive Officer (A.C.E.O.) for the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (M.A.F.) and is the son of the late Toala Faaluma and the late Maseuli Ida.

He holds a bachelor's degree in tropical agriculture and a postgraduate diploma in tropical agriculture.

Having worked the Ministry for 13 years including two years as the Assistant C.E.O. (for Savai’i operations), the candidate lists his primary objective as an aspiring politician to be the voice of his community.

“Due to his passion and desire for the people of Faasaleleaga No. 4, he made the decision to resign from his duties as A.C.E.O, to pursue his dream of representing Faasaleleaga No. 4 and focus on his campaign full-time,” his profile reads on the Go Fund Me page.

The Go Fund Me account was set up by a family member, who describes Unasa as “loving and caring and always cares for anyone in need and always has the best interest of his community in sight in decision-making.”

“He looks out for his village as well as the villagers for a better future. We are all humbled by your love and support for our brother’s campaign.

“One hundred percent of all that is donated will go toward his campaign and his goal for a better Faasaleleaga No. 4.”

Unasa credits his success to taking care of his parents until their passing. 

He also worked as a part-time lecturer at the National University of Samoa (N.U.S.) teaching foundation year students.

Unasa was selected by his village to run for the seat, he said in a video message, which was also uploaded on the Go Fund Me page.

He also believes in developing agriculture and wants to address youth unemployment in his constituency that comprises Faga, Sapini, Luua, MAlae, Salimu, Saasaai, Saipipi and Siufaga.

Unasa expressed his gratitude for the donations and wished his supporters blessings.

He is one of two known F.A.S.T. candidates to fundraise on Go Fund Me.

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