As the sun rose above Moturiki Island on Monday morning there was an air of excitment and anticipation, as the team, communities and Moturiki District School children looked forward to a huge project finale. After presenting their traditional tatau to the Chief of Nasesara, the team headed for the school, and so began the climax to 8 weeks of hard work and dedication!
The drama of the House Cup competition had been building, with the arts & crafts, photography, debating, young enterprise and sports already completed, and so it was the public speaking and singing that would decide our champions. As the kids chanted their house name the leaders tallied the points, and with just 2 points separating the top two houses, it couldn’t have been closer. As the announcement was made it was Soqe who were celebrating, with Theo, Laura, Will and Adrien leading the cheers with their house!
The team, school children, teachers and Moturiki community members then made their way across for the grand opening of the brand new MDS kindergarten building, standing proud as a legacy for the volunteer’s for many years to come. Some kind words were spoken by the Headteacher of Moturiki District School Master Mika, before Think Pacific Leader Tommy replied on behalf of Think Pacific and the team. And then came the big moment, as Kindi teacher Laisa and Harry cut the ribbon and the kindi kids were the first to step into their new home…a fantastic moment!
As the team enjoyed some tea and cakes the MDS kids performed some mekes…and then it was the volunteers’ turn to perform the traditional melanesian mekes! Wearing the Fijian dress both the girls and boys did brilliantly, with the girls showing skill and precision, and the boys fearless with the spear dance! As always the crowd were in full voice, cheering the team and splashing powder all over our boys!
And then it was time for the very sad and very emotional farewells. The MDS students sang the “Think Pacific Song”, written especially for our teams who are so lucky to become a part of the school community, before singing the traditional farewell song Isa Isa as the team made their way towards Nasesara village and the boats. The kids and teachers were such a huge aspect of project life for our Moturiki team, and we would like to share our heartfelt appreciation for their support and encouragement throughout!
The final, and very tough, goodbyes were to the families and friends in Nasesara, which has been home to the team for 8 weeks. As the team waded out to the boats the village themselves were into the water, hugging and waving to say their goodbyes together. As the boats slowly made their way out of the reef passage and around Moturiki the eyes of our volunteers told the story. There is no place in the world like a Fijian village, and a Fijian island, and its a world that is hard to leave! To Nasesara village, and Moturiki Island, a huge vinaka vaka levu…sota tale!