The eight-island tour I went on over Thanksgiving break was truly an amazing experience. I must admit, I have traveled to many places around the world, even at the ripe age of 14, but this by far was the most hands on, fun, exciting , educational and heartfelt vacation I have ever been on.
This trip taught me many things but one thing that stuck out the most was not only the scenery, which was breathtakingly gorgeous, but the people.
The Fijians have an absolutely beautiful spirit about them. All of them smile and have such a happiness to them.
Something I said immediately after meeting them for the first time: Even though they don't have much and are very poor, they make up for it by having such rich hearts – this is the honest truth.
As you can see I had such a wonderful time with the people of Fiji. Going there knowing what I was sort of doing ahead of time still only prepared me a little for what I was actually in for. As soon as I got there I was a busy little beaver and it was definitely worth it in the end let me tell you.
I’d advise everyone to at least once in their lifetime experience a little of what Fiji has to offer -- I did, my gosh it is amazing -- and may I add so rewarding !!!!! I have always been interested in helping people ever since I was a little girl or, I should actually say, littler than I am now. I guess you can say it came to me rather than me coming to it (like singing). When I was little, I would give money to the homeless, participate on the outreach committee and then eventually became president of the outreach committee. Helping others in need just gives me so much pleasure and satisfaction , it simply just makes me feel good to know I'm giving back a little and using my time wisely here on earth.
As I went on the tour of Fiji, I definitely connected and fell in love with the people of Fiji and their villages, but the other thing I was there for and that was later brought to my attention -- how much they need in everyday items we take for granted; electricity, paved roads, communications, medical supplies. [I took out hot shower, cause it’s not really a need, more of a luxury] I realized they could use the simplest of things to make their life better so each village I visited I asked what they needed -- and with your help, we hopefully can make that happen.
I have many ideas and many projects in mind for the Jazmin Fund and helping the people of Fiji. My main goal, since this is a new fund, is to get the most important things started first. We’ve already donated thousands of pre-natal vitamins, provided a rooftop water-collection system for a remote island that has a water shortage, and simple things like school supplies.
But I want to move on to bigger things for the future. What I’m thinking about now is not only improving some very important buildings in Fiji, such as; medical and educational buildings, but creating a brand new building which could be used as a youth center for children to go and get away for a little while when they come home from school or whenever, such as; do their homework, play, hang out with friends, make music, listen to music or just relax. This felt like a great idea to me because in the villages we visited, there isn't really anything like this that young people can call their own, so what better to create than this?
I was thinking of building it pretty much from scratch, in Fiji, going over there this summer and bringing a couple of my friends as volunteers who would like to help and share the wonderful experience with me. I was thinking of making it colorful on the outside and artistic like a mural and have the kids in the village help paint it if they want and put a little design on it so in the end it will be art and cool place to be – their place. I would love to dedicate it to the children, but of course, if the adults would like to use it, okay, but mainly for the kids.
I want to thank everyone who have donated to The Jazmin Fund. I’m truly thankful and you can be assured that the people in Fiji are too.
Lots of luv and again, thank you.
I also wanted to add that right now the Jazmin Fund is tied in with the Naqaqa Giving Foundation. It will always be a part of this foundation but maybe not fulltime like it is right now. I would like to venture out and focus on other things in the future, but these remote villages in Fiji will be important projects for a while since Fiji and the people of Fiji have become so important to me.
And those of you who have emailed me with wonderful words of support and encouragement and sharing your community stories -- that is great and I really commend you.
Thank You and Bula!!! (Bula is the Fijian greeting word, and its actual meaning is “Life!”)
I almost forgot, those of you who want to be further involved -- just let me know. Those of you who don't know enough about it or are hesitant, I hope this message helps and you join in.
Top of Page | Return to main page