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Missionary turned Policewoman says "follow your dreams"

A young mother and newly sworn-in policewoman, Norah S. Tuwai, says her story is an example for others to “follow their dreams”.

Mrs. Tuwai was one of 44 recruits sworn in on Thursday at a ceremony at the Police Headquarters. 

“Chase your dreams and work until you get there”, the returned missionary from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said.

The 25-year-old from Saleilua Falealili was surrounded by friends and family after the graduation ceremony, which officially capped off their 15 week-long training course.

Speaking to the Samoa Observer, Mrs. Tuwai said it was a dream come true to be clothed in Police uniform.

“I was chasing this dream, wanting to become a Police Officer, not because of the uniform, but because I want to serve my people because serving others is serving God,” she said. 

Having completed her church mission in the Philippines a few years ago, Mrs. Tuwai said the Samoa Police Headquarters was one of her first stops upon arrival.

But, due to last-minute hesitations and feeling overwhelmed by her nerves, she did not fill out the required forms straight away.

“Before I went on my mission I always dreamt of being in the Police; it was my dream,” she said.

“And I remember coming back from my mission; I came straight to the office, picked up my form, but went back without filling it.”

Within two years, Mrs. Tuwai had married the love of her life, Osea Tuwai, who is of Fijiian descent and began raising their son Ephraim.

It was then she thought to give her dream another shot.

The ex-student of Samoa College, Avele College and Falealili College said this will not be the end of her career.

If anything, this will be a stepping stone for her into a more specialised field within the force.

“I’m so happy I’m able to start working right away after the 15 weeks of training and schooling in the police force,” she said.

“And right now we start off with general policing, but going forward, wherever I will be placed, I shall do my best.”

For the first time in Samoa Police academy, more women were eligible and graduated the class more than men.

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