Anise Rises Above The Challenges
Last year was a painful year for Lautoka School for Special Education (LSSE) headgirl, Anise Leweni Bacaivalu and her two siblings.
Losing their father, Vatimio, in July and then their mother, Lavenia, in September, was hard for the 19-year-old.
But the lass plans to rise above all this and become a major player in the tourism industry – by assisting in communicating with people who have hearing and speaking disabilities.
She is well versed in sign language, having attended Lautoka School for Special Education from Year 1 to 8, then moved on to Andhra Sangam College and returned last year to start vocational studies.
Her area of studies centres on work in the hotel industry and Ms Bacaivalu said she does not mind fixings beds or cleaning guests’ rooms.
However, she backs herself as an asset with sign language skills should the hotel need her to deal with poeple living with disabilities.
Her dad worked for Navini Resort in the Mamanuca Group, while her mum died in a bus while returning to Lautoka from Suva.
“My young sister, Amelia, who is 12 and attends Andhra Sangam Primary School and I stay with our big brother, Mosese and his wife at Rifle Range in Lautoka.”
“He looks after us very well since our parents passed away and I hope to one day repay him for all that he has done for Amelia and I.”
“When I work, I want to look after my young sister like a mother until she works.”
“I want to be there for Amelia when I start work to help her stand on her own two feet.”
Meanwhile, Deepak Singh, 16, the newly-inducted headboy has his eyes set on a military career.
Deepak said he once only knew A, B and C and no other letter in the alphabets.
He was at Lautoka Muslim Primary School from Class 1 to 8 and later attended Lautoka Muslim College for Year 9.
“Because of my difficulties with my alphabets, I was sent to LSSE.”
Deepak has never regretted this as he has improved with each year since joining four years ago.
His dad, Adip Singh works for the Lautoka City Council while his mum, Shareena, stays at home.
The school’s assistant head teacher, Kailash Prasad said Deepak was very handy around the school as he usually cuts the grass and carried out small maintenance works like painting and carpentry.
“I want to join the army,” he said with confidence.
Chief Guest, the divisional secretary in the Commissioner Western’s Office, Seremaia Waqanisau said to be a student in such an institution should be a great honour, but to be a prefect was more than just being honoured. It carried responsibilities.
“Responsibilities that may be as more challenging than any normal school and it is with this challenges that each student today, specially selected to take up leadership role will need to adopt and implement.”
Edited by Caroline Ratucadra