Hi. Spending six days on holiday up at Pacific Harbour in July. Any advice on bringing stuff up for schools or villages - what’s needed and how to donate? (without making a big deal).
I am going to Pacific Harbour in July also. I was thinking of taking some school supplies and giving them to one of the staff members to pass onto a local school.
I look forward to seeing any replies to this thread in case it is relevant for me too. :)
Fijians are big time into sports, rugby especially, so anything related to ball sports is a good starting place. Even really basic stuff, or things to maintain what they already have, is good. Apart from that all the usuals like pencils, crayons, colouring pens etc also go down well.
You'll get loads more suggestions from others I'm sure.
Have a lovely holiday and good on you for thinking of local needs while you're there.
The resorts tend to support or at least try to support their local villages as that is where the draw there staff from in which case I would make contact with your resort and see if they are doing anything that you may be able to fit in with or maybe they could suggest something as there on the ground there.
Check where you are staying. Most resorts offer village/school trips, and will make arrangements for you. Can't just wander in on your own. Other suggestions: reading, and coloring books, clothes, erasers, pencil sharpeners, jump ropes, and for the teachers: chalk, flash cards, and stickers for papers for a job well done. Anything you take will be greatly appreciated more than you know. If you have children, will be a real eye opener for them. They will know how lucky they are, and help them appreciate all they have.
When visiting a village, women must have their shoulders and knees covered. Hats and sunglasses are to be taken off before entering a village. It is also considered disrespectable to touch children or adults on the head. The smiles and laughter of the children will melt your hearts.
Have a wonderful holiday.
Thank you all - and more comments appreciated!
This is not to make a big deal - just to acknowledge there is life outside our comfortable resort that we might help in a very small way.
I agree school supplies is likely the answer - other ideas very welcome - and best ways to get them there with minimum fuss gratefully received.
No intention of going there to ‘ present’.
If going through the resort is a trusted way, then fabulous!
Any issues encountered with this? Thanks :)Edited: 30 April 2018, 10:48
Most resorts have people working there who belong to one village and have children who attend school nearby so the resort would advise the best way to help out the local school children I am sure.
Visiting villages/schools is not a big deal. It is very casual. You get the chance to talk with the children, teachers, villagers, and may be invited to share kava. It is a lot of fun, and a great experience. Sometimes the children will sing for guests.
Village/schools can be very large, so may not be possible to bring something for everyone. In those cases, we gave our gifts to the teachers, or village chief/elder to distribute. When we had enough gifts for everyone, we gave them to the children ourselves. Would check with the resort you are staying at as how, and to whom donations are distributed. You won't have to 'present' them yourself, if you chose not to.
Another way to support a village, is to purchase souvenirs sold by the women. Will need FJD in small dominations as they will be hard pressed to make change for 10 or 20 dollar bill. If you buy any wood carvings, make sure they are marked treated. If not they could be confiscated by customs when you arrive home. We have also made cash donations, which can be used to purchase items in need. Again, if you decide to, ask your resort how to go about giving cash.Edited: 30 April 2018, 18:30