January 2011 volunteer project

Yanuca village


The Community Tourism project of January 2011 had been requested to achieve specific aims in the village of Yanuca, Moturiki, in partnership with the Lomaiviti Provincial Council and guided by the action plans of the National Centre for Health Promotion and the “Towards a Healthy Fiji” Programme. These aims include holistic development in 5 areas: Physical, Mental, Social, Financial and Spiritual. These aims stem from the action plans submitted by the villagers of Yanuca, created through workshops and assessments conducted by the Ministry of Health and the Fijian Government.

Following approval by the National Health Promotion Council and under the direction of the Lomaiviti Provincial Council and the Integrated Community Development Taskforce, Think Pacific has been requested to assist the priority project objectives set forward by Yanuca Village as:

1.1 Physical Development

1.1.1 To build a village community hall, 10m by 6m in size and designed by Think Pacific’s architect Aporosa Vasu, and built under the supervision of Think Pacific building manager Jack Whippy. This hall will act as a central and important facility for the entire village, facilitating community interaction, cultural protocol, education and training. The primary use is to enable the entire community to gather together for village meetings, host guests and perform ceremonies. 

1.1.2 To paint the newly built community hall, both inside and out, and to paint the roof.

1.2 Youth Initiatives

1.2.1 Kindergarten:

To equip and run the kindergarten at MDS for the village children, introducing numbers, colours, arts, crafts, music and drama, which will be led by the community tourists, and assisted by a member of Navuti village, Laisa, who has made steps towards becoming an acknowledged Kindergarten teacher by approaching the Ministry for Education recently.

1.2.2 Health & Environment Workshops:

To encourage the aims of the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Environment, by leading classes in health and environment awareness programmes, focusing on waste management, recycling, infectious diseases, non-communicable diseases and oral health as examples.

1.2.3 School:

To assist the teachers at the Moturiki District Primary School, with daily lessons and activities for classes 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8. 

1.2.4 Sports Development: To encourage sports uptake through the introduction of daily sports coaching lessons at Moturiki District Primary School. To provide equipment and enable access to coaching in a variety of sports including rugby, netball, football, rounders, cricket, swimming, and hockey. To support local teachers with training practises and share basic sports knowledge so they can continue the sports training as a long term and structured programme. To initiate dance lessons and continue the development of athletics in Moturiki District School.

1.3 Social and Cultural

1.3.1 To create a positive interaction between community tourists and villagers by advising community tourists to respect Fijian culture and customs and village protocol.

1.3.2 To facilitate skills sharing from the Fijian people to the community tourists, advising and instructing community tourists in traditional village protocol, and Fijian skills such as mekes, weaving, cooking, fishing and farming.

1.4 Financial

1.4.1 To encourage income generating principles in the community, through fundraising events and guidance for local businesses.


In total Think Pacific donated $ 12,381.02FJD solely for the completion of the holistic development objectives in Yanuca village. This funding purchased the materials and resources needed to fulfil the following objectives:

2.1 Physical Development

2.1.1 Building the entire community hall from foundations to completed structure.

2.1.2 Painting of hall completed in its entirety.

2.2 Youth Initiatives

2.2.1 Daily assistance provided to Kindergarten children at Navuti Kindergarten. Initiatives included teaching numbers, shapes and colours, songs and nursery rhymes introduced, art and craft lessons and tooth brushing and hand washing. New decorations, and art, craft and books for the kindergarten.

2.2.2.Daily assistance provided in the Moturiki District Primary School, with community tourists supporting teachers, as requested by the school, for classes 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8.

2.2.3 Sports equipment, to improve and assist in the implementation of sports development at Moturiki District Primary School, supplied by Think Pacific.

2.2.4 Daily sports lessons taken from 3pm-4pm by the Think Pacific community tourists at Moturiki District Primary School, for all age groups. Community tourists introduced rounders, hockey, dance, cricket, athletics, swimming and football to supplement the programme that included rugby and netball. Introduction of these sports was very successful, with interest and potential shown by the children.

2.2.5 Community games organised by community tourists, including football, cricket and rounders. Community tourists also involved in competitive village matches in rugby 15s and netball, competing against other Moturiki village clubs.

2.2.6 Yanuca “TP Olympics’ organised in the final week. This involved competitions in fun races including egg&spoon, wheelbarrow, three legged and crawling races.

2.3 Health Programmes

Workshops conducted in Moturiki District Primary School and Navuti kindergarten in accordance with the Fijian Ministry for Health. Including:

2.3.1 Washing hands and teeth brushing teeth club’ for the kindergarten children.

2.3.2 Smoking, Healthy Living and Diabetes; raising awareness on the effects of smoking, the importance of a balanced diet and exercise, and the causes, symptoms and treatment of Diabetes.

2.3.3 Class 7&8 also looked at STI’s and sexual health, working in small groups with female and male community tourists.

2.4 Environment Programmes

Workshops onducted in Moturiki District Primary School, in accordance with the Ministry of Environment. Including:

2.4.1 Waste disposal and correct methods of disposing of rubbish including recycling.

2.4.2 Marine conservation and the protection of turtles and the reefs.

2.5 Social and Cultural

2.5.1 Activities including mat weaving, making a ‘bilo’, fishing and Fijian cooking were very well received by the community tourists and enabled local people to transfer their skills to the Community tourists. Community tourists gained greater respect and understanding for Fijian culture and traditional local skills through the activities organised.

2.5.2 An additional skill was taught to the community tourists in the form of learning a traditional Fijian meke. Both male and female community tourists learned a meke and performed it on the day of the opening of the community hall.

2.5.3 The village homestays were an absolute highlight for the community tourists, as they made extremely strong bonds with their village families and friends.

2.5.4 Community Tourists Angharad Jones (23) and Nick Godshaw (19), celebrated birthdays during the project in Yanuca, and the celebrations were a fabulous occasion of Fijian celebration.

2.5.5 Community tourists respected the religious customs of village life in Fiji, including prayers before meals and attending Sabbath services and participating in Church services, singing a hymn in the final Divine service and also reading bible passages in Fijian.

2.6 Financial

2.6.1 $291.60FJD raised for Moturiki District Primary School through a fundraising event in the community as Yanuca I Got Talent. Event had a number of acts, including singing, dancing, eating and gymnastics. Community tourists also sold popcorn, juice, cake and lollies to raise money, and there was also a raffle of a Think Pacific sulu.

2.6.2 $207.85FJD raised for Yanuca community through village fun day. Stalls included; Face Painting, Refreshments, Pin the tail on the fish, guava bobbing, cup challenge and Coconut Shy. There was a raffle of two Think Pacific sulus at $1/ticket, a soli for lunch given, and mekes performed.

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It was the best experience of my life. I feel like I've come away with some of the closest friends you can ever make.
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