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Samoan reality TV star appeals for donations to local nonprofits
Samoan reality television star, Kalani Litia Faagata, has made a public appeal for donations to Samoa-based nonprofit organisations Brown Girl Woke and Samoa Victim Support Group.
A reality TV star of the program “90 Day Fiance” on the American pay television channel TLC, Ms Faagata told the Samoa Observer in an emailed response that she wanted to use her profile and platform to raise fundings for the two organisations due to the work they are doing in Samoa.
“I found out about B.G.W during the measles outbreak and wanted to help in any way that I could. They worked incredibly hard to help our people during an extremely vulnerable time,” she said.
“After the outbreak, I continued to donate and share the word about B.G.W because of the important work they do for our people, especially their efforts in breaking generational curses.
“More recently, some Samoan people have not been happy about me and my family’s representation of Sāmoa and Samoans in general, on American television.
“In my opinion, if they’re genuinely concerned about the representation of our people, then they should educate others and donate to our people, rather than put down fellow Samoans.
“I asked these people to take the energy they’re using to be angry, and rather, donate to either B.G.W or S.V.S.G. I figured I could use my platform to bring awareness to things that actually matter.”
“I come from many generations of strong Samoan women, and I have been raised to never cower to anyone or anything.”
There have been over 20 donations so far with the amount surpassing US$1000 according to Ms Faagata.
People are also able to donate to B.G.W and S.V.S.G through a link on her Instagram page.
According to Ms Faagata, B.G.W. is a “God-send” for people in Sāmoa and she believes that the organisation’s founder Maluseu Doris Tulifau was “divinely called to do this work.”
“She is creating outlets for our young people to learn and grow. B.G.W. is healing generations of our people by teaching this generation to not accept domestic violence or abuse,” she added.
There have been more than 20 donations so far and the amount of donations has passed USD$1000.
“And B.G.W is teaching our people that if they have suffered, that they should speak up. There is strength in our collective voice, and our stories can help our fellow brothers and sisters.”
“Their work is also so important, because they not only physically help, they mentally help through counseling. They, too, are healing generations of our people like B.G.W, so I would advise more Samoans across the world to give whenever they can to help our people,” she added.
B.G.W. Founder, Maluseu Doris Tulifau, when contacted by the Samoa Observer to comment described the gesture as “it’s been incredible and still in shock.”
“I just woke up that morning and wondered why I was getting notifications for donation. It was almost 20 by 10am and I saw a tag from a post from Kalani,” Maluseu said.
“For them to use their platform repeatedly for us and other organisations in Samoa has just been God’s gift to bless us through them. They have been donating since measles.”
Ms Faagata said she is proud of her roots and defended her record in support humanitarian organisations back in Samoa, such as the B.G.W. and the S.V.S.G. and the work that they are doing in the community.
“I would like to say that I am a proud Samoan. I am the first in my lineage to be born outside of Samoa. My father, Keneti Faagata, and both of my grandparents are from Tuana’i [and my grandparents still live there],” she further reiterated.
“I come from many generations of strong Samoan women, and I have been raised to never cower to anyone or anything. Being on television has made it easy for people to hurl negativity and accusations my way, most of which I ignore.
“But, one accusation I refuse to ignore is that we don’t care about our people. That is a hateful lie. Like B.G.W and S.V.S.G., we want true generational change and healing for our people, not just temporary aid. My biological grandmother, Litia Enoka Faagata, passed away before I met her.”
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I’m on a reality TV show about relationships. I’m not on a show that explores the ethnography of Sāmoa. It is not my obligation, nor Asuelu’s, to spoon-feed fa’asamoa to those with ethnocentric ideologies, who specifically watch the show for drama. Information about Sāmoa and fa’asamoa is readily available for anyone willing to look and learn. If people are incapable of entering a 5 letter word into a search engine, why would anyone care about their perceptions in the first place? Some of you are responding to these people by shitting on us, rather than enlightening them. If you’re truly upset about perceived misrepresentation, and not just bandwagon upset, why not tag informative pages like @samoatourism or @measinasamoa? Why not use those instances to share links to www.samoa.travel to let people see the beauty of Sāmoa and to read about our history and culture? Why not use that same energy towards the actual well-being of our people, instead of wasting it on seeking pālagi approval? Did you know you can feed a family in Sāmoa for $20 USD a month? Did you know that same organization, @browngirlwoke, also holds workshops for our girls to teach them about their periods and make the topic less taboo? Did you know that they are actively working to help our people break the cycle of domestic violence and abuse, amongst a laundry list of other things? Did you know that @svsg_be_the_change shelters our abused and neglected women and children? Did you know they have a program for the nofotane to empower them and learn to provide for themselves? Did you know it’s super easy to donate to both and you can choose any amount you’d like to give? (Both links are in my bio.😉) Being a faika is not more important than the generational growth and progress of our people. If y’all wanted the historically accurate portrayal of fa’asamoa from us, we’d be on National Geographic. (But, we too ratchet for that, and y’all wouldn’t watch that anyway.)😛 So, put your money where your mouth is and JUSS GEEV DEM DA MONEHH, DAS ALL I WAN! Screenshot your donations and I will post them to my story. 🤗💕