NEWS

‘Success Not For Faint Hearted’

Toppers recipient and part-time barber aspires to be successful in life.
01 Aug 2022 17:02
‘Success Not For  Faint Hearted’
Josefa Mateitoga.

Growing up under difficult family circumstances has inspired Josefa Mateitoga to dream big, work hard and become successful in life.

The 20-year-old grew up in his village of Mualevu on Vanuabalavu in the Lau Province.

He is a second year Toppers Scholarship recipient at the Fiji National University (FNU). For Mateitoga, success is not for the faint hearted. He studies during the week and on weekends he works as a barber to support his education expenses.

He has been a barber for almost seven years now while pursuing his Bachelor of Urban and Regional Planning at FNU.

 

“I grew up in a poor family, where my parents managed to earn around $3000 a year, living in the village. I attended Mualevu Village School for my primary education then Adi Maopa Secondary School from 2016 till 2020,” he said.

“As a boarding school student our boarding fees were $150 per term and knowing my family’s financial situation, I had started to cut hair during my free time in school so I could pay my own fees.”

“I charge $5 per haircut and this helps me with personal expenses. I am still doing my part time job as a barber. I stayed at the FNU Hostel, Samabula and I get the hostel boys as my customers too.”

Seven years on clippers and he still loves his job as a barber.

Despite the financial challenges his parents always inspired him to focus on his dreams, plans and to work hard and pray for it.

 

He will soon be the only source of income for his family who live in the village. He earns around $200 to $300 a week from his barber job.

“I try my best to provide for my family. I send them money for their groceries and other expenses,” he said.

“Mateitoga aspires to become a town planner and also own a barber shop.”

He is only available on Saturdays through appointments at the Bladez & Scissors Hair Lounge in Suva City as he focuses on his studies during the weekdays.

“If I hadn’t started cutting hair seven years back I don’t know if I could be here today. It’s the little steps we take that make the big difference,” Mateitoga said.

 

Feedback: nolishma.narayan@fijisun.com.fj



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