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Buli Advocates From Her Heart

Buli Advocates From Her Heart
Miss Cure Kids Fiji-Buli Wainiqolo is one of the 16 confirmed Queen contestants at this years Vodafone Hibiscus Festival. Photo: Niyaaz Dean
June 16
15:42 2017

Meet Miss Cure Kids Fiji, Buli Wainiqolo one of the 16 contestants vying for the Queen Vodafone Hibiscus festival in August.

Her advocacy message is on this year’s theme: Climate Change–Telling your own Narrative.

“I was really moved by the movie Moana and I loved the story of the brave girl restoring Mother Nature’s heart.

She said Mother Nature nurtures the environment to provide shelter, food and all the essentials to support life in the world.

“Having the Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD) I understand how important it is to have a strong heart and we need to do all that we can to protect our natural environment and restore balance so that nature can support us by providing for us.

“As a marine biology student, I am especially concerned about the Ocean.

We must all ensure that we protect this fragile environment,” she said.



Buli Sukanabola Vakavurewai Wainiqolo is originally from Nakobo Village, Cakaudrove, Vanua Levu, and is the fourth of six siblings.

She was born and raised in the hidden Paradise of Savusavu.

She attended Nasavusavu District School and Adi Cakobau School as a Year 9 student then continued at Natabua High School to complete her secondary school education.

She is a first year student pursuing a degree in Marine Science, at the University of the South Pacific.


What was your first reaction when you were told you were one of the Queens at this year’s festival?

Buli: Being asked to represent my community, who are living with and affected by RHD, as a Queen contestant, I was dumbfounded, honestly.

Then, when being told that I was accepted, I felt deeply honoured because the Hibiscus Festival is a fantastic platform to get important messages out to the community.


What was the motivation behind entering for this years’ Hibiscus?

Buli: I am motivated by all of the children suffering from RHD.

I want to be an ambassador of hope, to make everyone aware that this disease is preventable and can be controlled. I want to speak on behalf of all the patients, parents and supporters of people living with RHD.

Hence, my passion to advocate on a disease that has been affecting the lives of Fijian children is the motivation behind entering the 2017 Hibiscus Festival.


What can you say about your sponsors; briefly explain about the organisation that most people know nothing about

? Buli: Cure Kids Fiji is a charity organisation that is a branch of Cure Kids New Zealand, launched in Fiji in 2006.

“A Healthy Childhood for everyone” is a vision that Cure Kids upholds.

Having raised more than $1.8 million for health initiatives, the organisation works to improve the health of children in Fiji by fundraising to aid in the maintaining and purchasing of life-saving equipment.


Has it ever crossed your mind growing up and watching the festival that one day you’ll be part of it? Buli: I always marvelled at what contestants do while being up on that stage.

Their level of confidence, poise and how they carry themselves is really something to look up to.

However, never once did I imagine that I would be a part of the Hibiscus Festival.


Apart from your current position, what do you like doing in your past time?

Buli: Other than reading books I also enjoy free verse poem writing, playing 8 Ball Pool online and viewing images on landscape photography.


I love the ocean and marine environment which I so really enjoy when I get to go swimming and snorkeling. Who are your greatest inspiration by far?

Buli: The Bible verse Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Playing both roles as a Mother and a Father in my life, my greatest inspiration is my mother Elenoa Wainiqolo.


Some of the challenges in your line of work?

Buli: Having concerns over my health are a setback for me as I do have an interest in physical activities.

Encouraging my fellow RHD peers to keep taking medication and not neglect it has really been a challenge for me as well.


What would you like to take away from this year’s Hibiscus?

Buli: As this years’ Hibiscus concludes, the maintaining of the new life-long circle of friendship and sisterhood bond that the Hibiscus provided, giving back to my community and nation as well as learn more about myself, with an added boost to my self-confidence; poise and communication skills, are what I would like to take away with me.


Quote: “Life is about Balance. Be kind but don’t let people abuse you. Trust but don’t be deceived. BE CONTENT, but don’t stop improving yourself” – Anon Book(s): Lost Daughter, A Daughter’s Suffering, A Mother’s Unconditional Love, An Extraordinary Story of Hope and Survival by Nola Wunderle. The novel series Alex Cross by James Patterson Food: Seafood cuisines especially kokoda. Song: Shembe Is the Way – Lucky Dube and Mandisa’s Overcomer.

All time movie: The Ben Carson Story and Daddy’s Little Girls. Guilty pleasure: Caffeine products as an indulgence, especially coffee. Buli Wainiqolo is one of the 16 queen contestants at this year’s Vodafone Hibiscus that will be held from August 11 to 19 at the Vodafone Arena, Suva.


Edited by Karalaini Waqanidrola


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