RELEASE NUMBER 63/17
CORAL COAST, FIJI – November will see the completion of two new classrooms at the Conua School in Fiji’s Sigatoka Valley thanks to a direct-action volunteer tourism initiative by Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort.
The resort’s activities manager and project host, Kini Sarai, said that guests were currently helping to plaster the inside of the classrooms and that as soon as the wiring was complete, painting and tiling would begin.
“We are delighted with the progress and are right on schedule for a November completion. Interest from guests continues to increase as those that have signed up to work on the project tell other guests about their experience, saying it was the highlight of their Fiji holiday,” Sarai said.
Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort General Manager Peter Hopgood said the cost of the project was about FJD$80,000 (USD$39,300).
“It has been funded with the support of our guests who have joined in the construction of the building under the guidance of the resort’s engineering team,” he said.
Hopgood said that seven years ago when the resort first approached Conua School with an offer of assistance, it had 55 students.
“Today there are over 125 students and 25 kindergarten children. Since Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort has been involved with the Conua School, we have built new library, computer lab, a large meeting bure and last year we opened a new kindergarten. We feel that we are a vital part of this community and speaking personally, it has been a great joy to watch these children grow and develop.
“My team at Outrigger are so proud that we have been able to make a difference in the lives of these students,” he said.
Hopgood also acknowledged the contribution made by the school’s management team.
“We have a saying at Outrigger that we only help those who help themselves, and the school’s management team did that by committing to contribute $10,000 to this project through various fundraising activities of their own.
“The children are our future and the support and assistance that they receive at this young age is invaluable,” he said.
Guests of Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort visit the project on Tuesdays or Thursdays at a cost of FJD$100 (USD$49) adults and FJD$60 (USD$29.50) children. The full-day excursion includes return transportation to the school, lunch and a visit to the historic Tavuni Hill Fort on the way home.
When Conua Primary School opens its doors on the first day of school in 2018 the two new classrooms will officially be put to use.
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