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Archived News: March 2007

From Curleene Langman in California (29 March 2007)

In February a container of donated medical aide equipment and supplies was safely handed over to the Rotuma Hospital Board by Mua Taukave on behalf of Project Rotuma.

Due to stormy weather, the boat had to anchor off shore for a couple of days and many items were transferred to smaller boats for ferrying to shore. There was no shortage of assistance as many eager helpers were awaiting the cargo.

Receiving the Goods

Since receiving the cargo the hospital has distributed crutches, wheelchairs, walkers and commodes to many recipients in need on the island. The beds are already in use and other supplies that will improve the efficiency of the hospital system are in place.

Project Rotuma (PJR) takes pride in this historical achievement, a result of our members' relentless efforts, and is grateful to all who supported our events during the year.

In addition to committing to numerous smaller funding requests, Project Rotuma will be supporting an extension of Rotuma Hospital in 2007/2008, a project we have been committed to since our inception.

Displaying the donations

From Nina Campbell in Stoke-on-Trent, England (28 March 2007)

My husband Dexter and I had a joyful and wonderful get-together with friends and family to celebrate Ross Christian Campbell's christening at St.Peter's in Chains Parish, Stoke-on-Trent, England. Ross is our third and youngest child. The christening celebration was held on 18 March 2007. It was also Mother's Day in England so it will be remembered as a special day in our life always.

Nina Campbell
Dexter, Nina, our son Ross and his god-parents, Tuli & Ratu Jone Vuki

I grew up in Rotuma, at Atapisi, Motusa. Maybe some Rotuman people might remember my grandfather, Tamiana; his brother is Anslemo Fatiaki. My family and I migrated to England in 2000. We lived in Kent for four years and then moved to the Midlands, Staffordshire County, City of Stoke-on-Trent, in 2003.

From Lorelena Kulatea in New Zealand (19 March 2007)

Pasifika. A festival which represents Pacific Island flavour right in the heart of Auckland, New Zealand. Western Springs was host to almost 250,000 people who all came to satisfy their curiosity of island culture. Brown was the colour of the day, with the hot summer sun and the smell of coconut juice permeating through the air. Amoung the many cultures there to perform was a small, proud young group of people from the island paradise of Rotuma.

We, the NZ Rotuman Youth Group represented our small island on the 531pi Cultural stage [the main stage and the biggest stage] on Saturday 10th of March. We performed a hafa/tautoga, [mak tak tak, one sua which lead straight into a tiap hi'i and one tiap forau] all original songs composed by NZ Rotumans. The crowd during previous performances were restless and always moving around. But during our performance, they were quiet, attentive and very curious. The crowds were still, with everyone fixed on our performance on stage. Walking onto the stage, voices loud, actions in unison and smiles gleaming, our youth performed for the large crowd.


Performing a Sua

We did well. Our youth, while small, were determined to showcase our culture and our way of dance. Learning about our culture is always encouraged and it is through this Pasifika festival that we wanted to show what we have learned. Our actions were all synchronised. Our singing was loud and our uniforms colourful. But most of all - we had fun. Those who performed were, John, Hanisi and Margaret Munivai. Robert Samisoni, Peter and Eleana Inoke. Tesi Solomone, Fintan Kulatea and Chandelle Rennel. Tamiana Konrote, Stephanie and Colleen Sokra'a. Marlene Pene, Martin Kauata and myself.

We were proud to be Rotuman and I think that came through in our performance. So much time was put into this performance by so many people. The youth couldn't have done it without support from the many Rotumans living in NZ and individuals that put in so much time in order to make this performance possible. Some of the people we would like to thank are Aunty Rosarine Penjueli for putting up with all our antics and always supporting our endeavours. Aunty Itu Vaurasi for making our Tefui's. Frank and Rosemund Samuela, Thomas and Aggie Penjueli, Fekau Ravaii, William Kauata, Althaeus Tomasi and Akanisi Kulatea [mum] for supporting us in our performance.

Thanks to all who turned up on the day to support us, especially our Chairman, Mr. Arthur Shaw and his wife [Aunty Ravai]. To all the parents of the youth. Without your support, your children could not have done as well as they did. To Darlene Penjueli, our young and talented purotu for organising, for leading us and for all the hard work that you put in to make us look good. Lastly, to each and every NZ Rotuman youth member. Thank you for putting in the hard work, for loving our culture and for being my inspiration to do what we do. You all have worked so hard and I am proud of you. True's up!

Lorelena Kulatea
NZ Rotuman Youth Leader

More Photos

From Sydney, Australia (12 March 2007)

Rev. Sef Carroll
Rev. Seforosa Carroll

Rev. Seforosa Carroll has been awarded an Australian Postgraduate Award (APA) scholarship to pursue a Ph.D. degree full time for the next three years. The working title of her Ph.D. dissertation is “Making Room for the Religious Other,” which picks up the theme of hospitaleity in her M.Th. (hons) thesis.

Sef will end her term as Chaplain at MLC School Burwood, NSW, in April. She is from time to time a visiting lecturer in theology at the United Theological College, Parramatta. Sef is also a member of the Assembly Working Groups on Relations with Other Faiths.

A paper that she presented at the Vaka Vuku conference in Suva in July 2006, entitled "Hospitaleity: a Helava Way," is in the current issue of the journal Dreadlocks, which is published at U.S.P.

From Glory Brown in New Zealand (8 March 2007)

Gagaj Titofag

Condolences for our father, husband and grandfather Gagaj Titofag Aleksio who passed away peacefully on 8 March 2007 at his residence in Rotuma after a long illness.

His kindness and humanity, which he exercised during his tenure as a chief of Juju since 1969, will be sorely missed by his family and his wide circle of friends. His wisdom and counseling have been valuable assets to our family and to the community. May he rest in peace.

Jan and Alan would personally like to offer their condolences to Gagaj Titofag's family and to the people of Juju. He was always very kind and gracious to us and exemplified what chieftainship on the island is all about.


From Sydney (7 March 2007)

On the weekend of 16-18 February 2007, seventy-six (76) members of the Wesley Mission & Drummoyne Rotuman Congregations spent the weekend together at Mangrove Mountain Retreat on the Central Coast (an hour out of Sydney).

The camp theme was:  “To Be A Follower of Jesus” and the bible study and discussion on the Saturday was led by Reverend Peter Chung.    

After Saturday lunch, there was a time of reflection. Biblical items were performed by the children, individuals and family groups, and there was group participation in the traditional mak ka pel and songs of praise.

Late Saturday afternoon young and old joined in outdoor activities such as canoeing, sand volleyball, flying fox and swimming.

A social night was planned for Saturday evening.  The program included traditional hafa and fara performances by mini-groups and comedy skits were certainly a highlight.

Following a Holy Communion service on Sunday morning, members further participated in group charades, bible quiz and more songs of praise.

It was truly a rewarding time of sharing and fellowship!See photos

From Gordon Moyes Website (19 February 2007, posted 5 March)

Local Rotary and Rotaract clubs will engage in a battle of wits at Parliament House on Tuesday 13th March, International Rotaract Day, to raise money for charity.

“As a member of the Rotary Club of Sydney, I am delighted to host ‘The Great Debate’ on the theme, A little knowledge is a dangerous thing” said member of the Legislative Council Dr Gordon Moyes.

“I am looking forward to healthy and robust debate between young and old as they use their wit and wisdom in the ‘bear pit’. Holding the debate on International Rotaract Day, a day that commemorates the formation of Rotaract across the world, to raise money for a library in a developing nation is such a worthy cause. These features will add a very special dimension to the event.”

The Great Debate’ is an annual event that promotes interaction between service-based clubs Rotary and Rotaract. Rotaract is sponsored by Rotary and is a club for young people aged 18-30.

“Holding ‘The Great Debate’ in the New South Wales Parliament House is a large coup for Rotaract. It will allow our members and guests to be parliamentarians for a night and become interactive with the debate,” said Sydney City Rotaract Club President Naomi Kennedy.

Donations collected at ‘The Great Debate’ will go towards purchasing much needed books for the Rotuma High School library in Rotuma, Fiji. This will continue the work started by Dr Moyes as former Superintendent of Wesley Mission, ensuring the children of Rotuma have access to supplies needed to continue to raise standards of education and literacy.

Dr Moyes gathered support to raise $75,000 to establish the library in June 2001. With more than 7,600 Rotaract clubs in more than 158 countries, and an estimated membership of more than 176,000 Rotaractors, why not join your local Rotaract Club? For more information on CBD based Rotaract clubs see or email

Commentary by Rejieli Flexman in Sydney (14 March 2007)

After reading Dr Moyes letter, posted on this Web site, I thought I'd send you some more information. Dr Gordon Moyes got in touch with me back in January this year to inform me of his intentions to re-establish support for Rotuma High School Library. Rotaract has been in touch with me for details as to how the money should be used, apart from buying books. In 2001 a group of us from Wesley Mission arrived in Rotuma to build the library, which was named the Wilson Inia Library, with the permission and blessing of Mrs Elizabeth Inia and her children. However, for marketing purposes, I have used the school name. It is just amazing that John Tanu is now back in Rotuma as Principal of the High School and Dr Moyes wants to renew his contacts with the school.

Four of us attended the function last Tuesday 13th March as guests of the Sydney Rotary/Rotaract Club: Rev Syd Taito, who recently became a Justice of Peace (JP); Mr Graham Want, Manager Pastoral Services, Wesley Mission; Hifa Flexman; and myself. It was held at the NSW Parliament House -- Lower House Chamber. Rotary won the debate. Rev Dr Gordon Moyes is a Member of Parliament and a past President of Sydney Rotary; it was through him that the meeting was held there for the first time. It was a real priviledge to be able to attend. During his time as President, Dr Moyes introduced a new rule to include women into membership. It caused an uproar and several members threatened to walk out, but when they found out that their first woman member happened to be the Governor of NSW, Professor Marie Bashiar, they changed their minds.

We don't know yet as to how much was raised on the night but we are looking forward to a good amount.

From Fanifau Avaiki in Vancouver, B.C. (1 March 2007)

Noa'ia 'e mauri. Greetings to all.

The Hugagesea club of Vancouver, BC, Canada - with members in Alberta, Canada and Washington State, USA - would like to invite all Rotumans in North America to join us in celebrating Rotuma Day 2008 in Washington State, USA.

Our intention is to connect with other Rotumans living in Canada and the United States and strengthen our growing North American Rotuman community.

It would be a great honor for us to share this special day with all of you.

Details on the time, date, and venue will be posted on this website at a later date. This advanced notice will hopefully give you all enough time to plan ahead.

If you would like to contact our club, please feel free to email us at

Faiaksia and we hope to see you in 2008!

Fanifau Avaiki - Hugagesea Club President 2005-07


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