Archive for the ‘Jan 15 - Lovu’ Category

Sunday, March 8th, 2015

Gau Team – ‘Meke’ performances give great flavour for traditional Fijian culture and were thoroughly enjoyed by all!

Gau Lovu Week 4 Meke Performance (4)

“One of the best parts of life in a Fijian village is the amazing music and dancing. The whole community just comes together; whether they’re singing or beating a plastic box, the most earthy, soulful harmonised sound fills the whole room.

The ‘Meke’ is a kind of traditional Fijian dance, and our meke lessons were definitely the highlight to my week. Once the word spread to the village we were learning meke, the whole village flooded the hall and the beautiful singing and laughter lit up the room. As a dancer back home, I found it particularly interesting and fun learning a new style and soaking up the atmosphere.

We performed our meke at the opening of the health clinic and I’ve honestly never had more fun! The boys did their meke and dressed up in grass skirts with war paint on them which was so funny while all of us girls wore beautiful ’salusalus’ (flowers around our necks) and garlands of leaves around our waist and wrists. Everyone was clapping along and smiling and I got a huge buzz from performing as it was the culmination of all our hard work both at lessons and celebrating the build. The meke gave us a great flavour for traditional Fijian culture and was thoroughly enjoyed by all, definitely something to get involved in if you have the chance!”

by Amy

Gau Lovu Week 4 Meke Performance (6)

“There have been so many memorable experiences during our time in Fiji but performing the Meke, which we had rehearsed for weeks, was the highlight of them all, as I cannot imagine doing anything of the sort again. We performed an out of sync routine to the whole village, who repeated the verses again and again for us to carry on. I don’t know who enjoyed it more; the villagers or us! We then sat with the village for tea and cakes. It was an honor and a privilege and I will cherish those memories forever!”

by Josh

Sunday, March 8th, 2015

Volunteer Stories – Lovu Fun Day; ‘Amazing to watch the adults and kids come together to raise money for the Health Clinic’, by Chloe

Gau Lovu Week 4 Lovu Fun Day  (26)

The village green was a hive of activity from 8am. Signs were being painted and tables being carried across for the stalls. Bamboo and wood was hammered into the ground as goal posts and coconut shy. The donations for the tombola were beautifully laid on the table and cakes made lovingly by Amy and Emma were closely watched by the villagers… it was clear that they were to go quickly.

As with every activity in the village the children gathered around us, building excitement for the stalls to open. The leaders handed out lollies & sweets as prizes to the stall attendants. Sweets are a great motivation for the kids of Lovu to spend money. The Fun day 100% lived up to its name with food, painting, limbo, tombola, coconut shy, penalty shootout, tug of war, bake sale and ’sponge it’!

It was amazing to watch the adults and kids coming together to raise some money for the medical centre but most importantly to have fun. The vibe continued all day and our Ta said that he was really impressed by how simple it was to create such a wonderful day!

Saturday, March 7th, 2015

Gau Team – Building Achievement; Huge pride for volunteers and community members as the Lovu Village Health Clinic is officially opened!

Gau Lovu Week 4 Opening Night  (1) Pic 1

This week was the last week of build. The opening for the Health Clinic was on Friday and the village was anxiously awaiting the big reveal. Our family described to us how important and useful this centre will be to the villagers and the overall wellbeing of the community. This week on build we were painting the interior, exterior and the roof. We also fit the windows, varnished furniture, sanded the floor and created a Think Pacific logo.

The logo was a group design that leaves a lasting reminder on the building of our time here. The finishing touches to the build were hard word but we were all eager to meet our deadline and creating something we can all look back and be proud of. But I’m proud to say we completed the build!

Gau Lovu Week 4 Build Kat  (2) Pic 2

The whole team came together to make sure that the build was at the highest standard possible before opening. We are all proud of what we have accomplished in only 4 weeks. The build stands in the center of the village with a cream and sky blue colour scheme that fits in well with the village. Our logo, a turtle (the chief’s symbol) and two palm trees, also contains each team members name. The health center will remain an integral part of the community for years to come!

by Katy

Friday, March 6th, 2015

Gau Team – Numbers, Songs, Stickers and a ‘Treasure Hunt’ during final days of Kindi!

Gau Lovu Week 4 Kindi (7) Pic 1

Myself, Sacha, Josh and Kirsty spent the last week on project in Kindi. We followed the timetable the team had been using previously and threw ourselves in to the excitement of song time, play time and story time. Our favourite was teaching the children ’10 in a bed’ and having them all ‘roll over’ on the floor, even the teacher asked to join in on the last day!

We carried on with the theme ‘Numbers’ and had them trace and colour numbers 1 to 10. We then had them form a number line and taught them the song ‘1, 2, 3, 4, 5 once I caught a fish alive’.

Gau Lovu Week 4 Kindi (23) Pic 2

On our last day we made a treasure hunt for them and made sure we gave out lots of stickers to thank them for their hard work. I think we could all see how much progress they have made in both their behavior and their ability to communicate in English. It was fantastic to hear them all able to tell us their name, where they’re from and their age.

It was lovely to hear the teacher say she would continue with the timetable and she even asked if she could record Sacha singing some of our songs so she can teach them in the future! After a final kindi goodbye song we waved the children off feeling sad but very proud of the work the whole team has accomplished.

by Lydia

Friday, March 6th, 2015

Volunteer Stories – Family Night; ‘With grog flowing we chatted, sang songs and laughed together’, by Ben

Gau Lovu Week 4 Family Night Ben  (2)

For weeks prior my Na had asked me ‘When is family night?’, so when it finally rolled around the sense of occasion was not lost on me. It began at dinner with a massive feast and my Na apologizing if the food (to feed 4 but enough for 8) would not be enough .As usual the meal was delicious with plenty of variety.

Shortly after dinner friends and family started to arrive. I was quickly fitted with a neck garland (salusalu) while others began preparing the grog. I had the honour of sitting at the top of the circle for the grog session and every bowl that went out was greeted with a ‘Bula Ben!’ Early on I had been told that this particular evening we would go until all the grog was gone and while I had agreed I knew that I would probably struggle to keep up the pace, but with grog flowing we chatted, sang songs, enjoyed more and laughed together!

Thursday, March 5th, 2015

Volunteer Stories – ‘So rewarding seeing the kids blossom’; House Cup Finals the proudest moment of project for Emma

Gau Lovu Week 4 House Cup Finals  (12) Pic 1

House cup is definitely been the most unexpectedly rewarding competition I’ve been involved in. Although challenging at times, the kids always thrived and exceeded beyond what we expected of them. Also House Cup Sport was so much fun, the kids got so excited to play their part and join in. It finished with a tug of war between the whole school and the TP team which then resulted with a victory for Narocake District School and a walk of shame for TP!

My favourite part was Public Speaking. I worked with a girl from class 8 and seeing how confident and far she’d come was overwhelming. I was actually nervous for her and when she performed with such confidence and enthusiasm I was instantly so proud of what she had achieved. It was so rewarding seeing the kid’s blossom and enjoy their time. We also performed a group song which was loads of fun and the kids really embraced it – a real high point to finish on. Hearing that my team won house cup was one of the proudest moments of my trip as all of the kids worked as hard and rose above and beyond the challenges! Definitely the highlight of my time here. Go Ketedromo!

by Emma