The wishes of the less fortunate

WISHING: A young boy roams town with no shoes as he tries to make a sale. HOPING: A young girl selling jewellery in town. [Samoa Observer]

It’s that time of the year where parents are out to buy new clothes and gifts for White Sunday.

But some children are not that lucky. Many children are out on the streets selling goods to support their parents instead.

On the streets of Apia yesterday, this writer came across many children selling various items from q-tips to hairpins, soda cans to jewelry, and fruits just to make a few tala to feed their families.

Children as young as seven years old were wandering around the markets and the town area in the boiling sun.

I came across many who approached me asking if I wanted to buy something.They looked sad and desperate.

With White Sunday in a few days time, I asked them, ‘what do you hope to get for White Sunday?

To protect their identities, we are withholding their names.

But the eldest was a 16-year- old boy who no longer goes to school.Selling cans of soft drinks, he said he decided to stay home to help his parents. He has three younger siblings and he helps his parents to support them by selling goods on the streets.

As any teenage boy, he wanted new clothes for White Sunday. He wants to dress to impress- a common wish from many of the street vendors I spoke to yesterday.

His friend, aged 15, wants a bike for White Sunday. He says a bike will help him ride around town to sell more cans of soda.

A young girl who was selling jewelry hopes to get a new dress, shoes and toys.She was accompanied by 12-year-old friend who was selling fruits along the seawall.

According to her parents,the young girl attends Malie Primary School.She is only sent out to sell goods after school when she is done with all of her homework.

An 8 year old street vendor selling mangoes walks around town with no shoes and his face covered with dirt and scars.With his outgoing personality he listed numerous things he hopes to get from his parents for White Sunday.

All in all, he just hopes they buy him a gift.He sells mangoes till 6pm to earn money for his family.


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