Three amazing ladies from Niue Island, Teresa, Sialeogo and Sataahi, recently returned to their homeland for a 10 day cultural experience. The ladies were able to reconnect with some of their families in their respective villages of Hakupu and Alofi, attending church services, as well as a complete island tour, attending the annual Constitution Celebrations and the Mutalau Village Show Day.
Families of the three ladies in Niue were emotional and in awe of seeing their relatives after over 45 years. The twin sisters left the island at the age of 10, and Teresas relatives had also not seen her for many years. Supported by the Spectrum Care Niue Cultural group and Service Coordinator Anne-Marie Erick, families and friends of the group visited often with gifts of food, drinks and well-wishes including expressing their appreciation for supporting the three ladies to lead great lives, especially enabling them to return to visit their homeland Niue. The ladies happily enjoyed the warm company of family and friends and all the local delicacies including coconuts, papaya, watermelons, coconut crab, taro and fish.
The travelling group was kindly hosted by the local Niue disability group – Niue Tolomaki Auloa Association. A workshop was held between the groups, including local stakeholders from the community, Niue Ministry of Social Services and representatives from the NZ High Commission in Niue. The group also visited the Niue Health Department and the Aged Care unit, presenting some gifts of friendship to the 6 residents there. The local T.V. station also produced a story featuring the Teresa, Siale and Sata which received many positive responses from the local community.
Upon the journey home, the twin sisters seemed sad to be leaving the island. However, once reaching their homes in Mangere Bridge, they were happy again, especially with the lovely welcomes prepared by their staff.