Heleina Young tells of her faith in God and her plans for the future Saint Joseph’s Secondary School student, Heleina Young is not carried away by her record breaking runs
24 Apr 2018 10:27
Proud parents David and Adrea Young with daughter Heleina at their family home in Raiwaqa on April 23,2018. Photo: Simi Haravanua

Heleina Young tells of her faith in God and her plans for the future

Saint Joseph’s Secondary School student, Heleina Young is not carried away by her record breaking runs at the Coca- Cola Games.

Speaking to SUNsports yesterday, Young spoke of her faith in God and what the future holds for her.

“God has a purpose and a plan to make us prosper,” she said.

During the Games, Young broke re­cords in the;

  • Intermediate girl’s 100m with a time of 11.87seconds erasing the time of 12.01s set by Younis Bese of Gospel High School in 2014. She be­came the first secondary school girl to run the 100m under 12 seconds and her time was even faster than the winning senior girl’s 100m time.
  • Intermediate girls 200m, stopping the clock at 24.3s to again break Bese’s record of 24.72s.
  • She received the Intermediate Girls Best Athlete and Best Female Athlete’s awards

Young hails from Kadavu while her mum is from Rotuma.

“I had always wanted to be an ath­lete while growing up. I was follow­ing the footsteps of some of my fam­ily heroes who were very influential in my life.”

She said one of them was her grandfather Joseph Young who was a sprinter while attending Marist Brothers High School in the 1960s.


Looking to the future, Young says, everything will depend on God’s plan for her while she continues on with her athletics career.

The Year 13 student plans not to rush into life but to take things as it comes.

“I want to finish secondary school first and see what comes in my way or whatever options that I have. I’m going to choose one that is going to suit me and my athletics career as well. I want to become a successful person in the future.

“I haven’t really planned what I want to become. There are many options but I haven’t really chosen one. I’d like to get a scholarship but that’s up to the Lord.”

Young said she also plays other sports but her success at the Coke Games was something she was not prepared for.

“I was surprised with the times that I had clocked and looking at what I have accomplished and I think I would like to stay in the sport and see how much better I can go from now on.”


She attributed her success to her coaches former Pacific sprint king Banuve Tabakaucoro and national women’s sprinter Sisilia Seavula.

“I look up to them because I get to see them train every day so watch­ing them makes me feel that I really want to be like them in the future,” Young added.

Her dad David said with God’s guidance, his 17-year-old daughter is able to achieve what she always dreamed of when she was small.

“Even when Heleina was small she was already sprinting so I had to run after her from then on I realised that she was something special.

“When she went to school, we got a consent letter for her to represent Saint Marcellin Primary as an un­der-9 athlete but at that time she was still seven-years-old.

“Apart from athletics, she is good in her academic work and I want her to take the right option when it comes to choosing what she wants to become in life,” he added.

– Edited by Leone Cabenatabua



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