Archive for the ‘January 2014 - MDS’ Category

Friday, April 4th, 2014

Moturiki Team – MDS Kindergarten Officially Opened, House Cup Finals & Traditional Mekes Performed; An unbelievable finale for our volunteer team!

Opening Pic 1.

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!

Opening Day.. (2)

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!

Opening Day.. (9)

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!

Opening Pic 2

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!

Opening Day.. (23)

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 levusota tale!

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

Moturiki Team – Build completed, farewell parties in school & kindi, and final few days in Nasesara village for our volunteer team

Week 8 Pic 1

It was a huge last week for our volunteer team on Moturiki, as after 8 action packed weeks of project, the final days were upon them! On build Tasha, Jamie, Theo, Ciara, Martha and Will completed the flooring for the kindergarten building, before turning their attention to the doors and final touch ups with the paint brushes. With the outside completed in good time, Will and Richie were able to add the winning logo above the kindi door, a fantastic symbol and memory for the team and school community. With the final Saturday free for the team, it seemed very appropriate that they should all be on build together for the final moment of build, as the last touch up was completed, and the kindergarten was officially ready for its grand opening on Monday morning!

week 8 Pic 2.

It was also an exciting week in Kindi for Jack, Libby and James, as the kindi crew enjoyed a “Kindi Birthday Party”, with cake, hats and games, before having their very own farewell celebration, where the team made kindi bags for each of the kids, with their name printed across the front and lots of goodies inside!

Week 8 - Pic 3.

In school it was also party time for Jim, Rich, Morag, Adrien and Jamie with their classes, as after 8 weeks of education workshops and classroom assistance the bonds with the kids at Moturiki District School were extremely strong…it will be a very sad farewell! In class the teachers were also eager for the team to have some fun with the students, introducing games to the learning elements and continuing with extra curricular activities.

week 8 Pic 4

It was also a very busy final week in the village for our team, with the Community Health Day taking place on Tuesday. The volunteers and village members were divided into groups, focusing on key health concerns including cuts and scrapes, breaks and sprains, dengue fever and food hygiene. Each group made posters highlighting the causes, symptoms and treatment for each aspect, before making a presentation and donating a 1st Aid kit to the village health worker.

There was also time for the team to enjoy a village visit to neighbouring Naicabecabe village, embrace one last clan night together, and of course practice their mekes ready for the big performance at the MDS Kindergarten opening. And on Sunday the reality of just one more night in their home of Nasesara hit home, with the team and community attending a farewell Church service, which provided a wonderful opportunity for the team to sing a hymn, and say a few words to reflect on a very unique and special time.

Sunday, March 30th, 2014

Moturiki Team – A fantastic weekend for our volunteers; Village visits, birthday parties, snorkelling trips, island treks and a Lovo feast!

Pic 1- weekend

On Friday the team raced back from school, got their best jaba dresses and bula shirts on, and set off our families from Nasesara on an adventure across Moturiki to Niubasanga village..and what a night to arrive into! It was a double birthday party in the village which we had been invited too, and the amount of people there was incredible, Fijian communities certainly know how to host! After a huge feast of fish and local foods, we had some beautifully baked cake, followed by many many bowls of grog and great dancing with hundreds of people! The team were also happy to see so many of the school kids invited to join the party, as they spent the evening singing together and playing games! The party, and the grog bowls, flowed until morning, with the last standing being our “grogaholics” Libby, Tash and Adrien, who staggered in at 5am!

Pic 2 - weekend

After an amazing night we headed back home to Nasesara, before surprising the team with a boat to a tiny island near Moturiki called Yanuca Laialai, where we cooked a traditional Fijian feast in a lovo, the underground earth oven. Whilst waiting for the Lovo, the team went snorkeling, spear fishing and made a camp fire, with some of us off exploring as we trekked up to the highest point of this small island to enjoy the most amazing view! After weeks of hard graft and huge efforts the team defiantly deserved a day on the beach, and we were all quick to make the very most of it!

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Moturiki Team – Volunteers coach MDS Under 10, 12 & 14 Rugby and Netball teams as Ovalau tournament approaches!

Pic 1 - sports

With the Ovalau-Moturiki schools rugby and netball tournament approaching, this week the team were asked by the MDS headteacher to entirely focus on these sports during the sports coaching and PE workshops, so that the students could be fully prepared and focused, with MDS having a stron track record in netball within the province!

The Think Pacific lads split into 3 groups, each coaching and mentoring different age groups at Under 10, Under 12 and Under 14 level, with this weeks objective being to coach the correct techniques for rucking and mauling. There was also some time spent looking at how to tackle correctly, as even at a young age the Fijian kids like to go high and hard! The kids were really responsive and enthusiastic, and next week the team shall begin building them up with set plays and handling drills before the tournament kicks off in Levuka on Saturday morning.

Pic 2 - sports

The TP girls were busy taking the MDS netball teams by storm, immediately putting them into game situations, passing drills and shooting practices, whilst making sure the kids were having fun along the way. There is a huge amount of natural talent within the Moturiki District School netball teams,including an Under 14 Fiji international, and the team therefore simply wanted to refine those skills, and encourage the girls to play with confidence, when they meet the Ovalau schools next weekend!

Those of the team not coaching took the younger classes for a big game of rounders, which the children always enjoy, with the volunteers joining in to provide that competetive edge!

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

Moturiki Team – Painting and flooring continues as the kindergarten school nears completion!

Pic 1 - Build

The final stages of the build are upon us, and this week the team managed to paint the inside of the kindi, concrete the steps and start the flooring! And there was even a little time in the afternoons to create a temporary gym out of bits of extra 4×2 that were being cast aside!

As always the painting provided entertainment for our team, and we had our very own “chuckle brothers” Libby and Tash on site, who completed the paint work on the inside whilst also adding some colour and decoration to eachother’s faces!

Adrien finished off the painting for the outside walling, with little touch ups on the window sills, door frames and frascia boards. He also proved to be a master dj, revealing the greatest song selection Think Pacific has ever seen with songs encompassing a jazz and rap mix…very catchy!

Jim and James were also busy on site with the paint work and flooring, and the team once again have done an amazing job this week, working hard and keping spirits high throughout!

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

Moturiki Team – Kindi and School programme in full swing, and its “Dengue Prevention Day” at MDS!

Pic 1 - school

In the MDS Kindi this week it was Rich, Ciara and Sam supporting the teacher Miss Laisa, and what a week they had! The kindi theme for week 7 was “Happy Birthday Kindi”, so the team and kindi kids got stuck in with singing birthday songs, peparing partys, and of course making very stylish birthday hats for all during arts and crafts! Rich, Ciara and Sam certainly found their creative sides and party spirit, and the kids had a blast with their birthday celebrations!

Pic 2 - school

In school this week we had Jamie back in class 6, and both Jamie and the students were delighted to be reunited! He was quickly back into his rythmn in the classroom, introducing lessons and concepts in a creative and fun style that encourages the kids to interact whilst learning.

In class 5 we had Madam Laura and Madam Martha, who led each subject due to the teacher being absent through sickness for the week. During a days afternoon classes they introduced “The Circus” to the students as a new and interesting element to their social science education. This included designating roles of the circus to the kids within the class, whilst also having some fun painting faces!

pic 3 - school

In class 7 and 8 Master Jack was eager to be back teaching, and once again he was able to gain a very positive and excited response from the kids by introducing new topics for them to study. This week he focused on world knowledge, and then gave small classes on different languages from around the world!

In class 2, Master Theo was loving life with the younger minds of MDS; his favorite moment of the week being when he asked the class “What is the opposite of like?’ to which they replied “Chicken!”. For their education topics Theo led the learning of “the calender”, teaching them the months of the year in order.

Pic 4 - school

In House Cup this week the team and kids continued with singing and public speaking, with a dramatic improvement being seen in both aspects with the songs and speeches really starting to sound good! The volunteers have even managed to put their own twists on the songs, with a few creative dance moves included to add some dazzle to the performances!

Pic 5

On Tuesday in school it was a Dengue Prevention Day, promoted by the Ministry of Health in Fiji! This included the kids and volunteers digging out any stagnant water, and allowing the streams and water sources to flow properly. Weeds and swamp areas were also cleaned aorund the school compound. The day proved to be allot of fun, and some top bonding, between the team and students, whilst also allowing everyone to learn something along the way!