NATION

No Regrets Selling Souvenirs

  Sainimere Niasa has never regretted the decision to start her own souvenir business. The 60-year-old from Suvavou, Lami, sells jewelry (earrings and necklace), meke costumes and other handicrafts, to
24 Sep 2018 10:00
No Regrets Selling Souvenirs
Sainimere Niasa and her husband, Waisele Vateitei, selling souvenirs in Suva during the arrival of Majestic Princess ocean cruise liner on September 21, 2018. Photo: Wati Talebula

 

Sainimere Niasa has never regretted the decision to start her own souvenir business.

The 60-year-old from Suvavou, Lami, sells jewelry (earrings and necklace), meke costumes and other handicrafts, to tourists and locals.

“Selling souvenirs is our only source of income and everything I have is from the income I get from selling souvenirs,” she said.

Growing up she learned her weaving skills and how to make other souvenir products by helping her mother.

“I do my own souvenirs and it is something that I love doing because customers purchase and take them home a memento of his/her visit to Suva.

“All my four brothers had a passion for business knowing they created tokens of remembrance for those who bought them,” Ms Niasa said.

“It was our bread and butter for the family while growing up

“When I come back from school I always help my parents and now I teach my children and grandchildren.”

Ms Niasa said they ventured into the souvenir business to use their talent because they were not well educated.

“The money we get from selling souvenirs depends on how many ships come to our shores, but it also depends on the tourists,” she said.

“We now know the people from which country buy souvenirs and those who don’t.

“I earned a profit of $240 from selling souvenirs to tourists who came onboard the Majestic Princess last week.

“The ship was huge, but not all of them bought souvenirs, some came for sightseeing I suppose.

“I am looking after my granddaughter. I thank God for his provisions in my life and that of my family.”

The mother-of-two, is married to Waisele Vateitei from Lamiti Village in Gau and they four grandchildren.

Edited by Percy Kean

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