Eighteen youths of Vuma Village in Ovalau today reaped the rewards of their hard work, sacrifices and determination with the commencement of the construction of their new homes.
The ground-breaking ceremony held today is a testament of their commitment. Officiated by the Minister for Rural & Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, Hon. Inia Seruiratu, he said the Vuma Youth Housing Scheme symbolises good leadership and teamwork.
Speaking in the iTaukei language, Minister Seruiratu highlighted the importance of strengthening the iTaukei structure to ensure the success of similar projects such as the Vuma Youth Housing Scheme.
He acknowledged the perseverance of the youths and emphasized that working together is critical in overcoming the challenges faced.
Usaia Delai of Vuma village said the Vuma Youth housing scheme started in 2011 when the village elders witnessed young couples who do not have homes of their own.
?We believe that new and young couples have to have their own homes and manage their own families.
?So a village development plan was established which includes the Vuma Youth Housing scheme,? he said.
Mr Delai said the scheme allows the village youths to plant yaqona which is to be harvested after 4-5 years.
?A programme was set out for them, whereby they spend the weekdays in their plantation camping and break camp in the weekend. They were also restricted from drinking yaqona.
?It is from the monies earned by selling the yaqona they have planted to pay for their 1/3 contribution of $6000.00 under the Governments Rural Housing programme, and I am happy to say that the materials for three homes have arrived and construction is expected to begin tomorrow.?
Mr Delai acknowledged the assistance from Government especially for the farming equipment?s for the youths.