SVSG launches online market to sell handicrafts and much more

Samoa Victim Support Group’s nofotane Online Market  was launched last Friday, at the Sheraton Aggie Greys Hotel, in Apia.
The event, initially scheduled for 18 March 2022, was postponed due to Covid restrictions, says the press statement.
“The online market launch is one way in which the self-employed Nofotane women under the Sustainable Income Generation Program, can counter poverty, financial stress, uncertainty, and most of all, domestic and family violence especially during the COVID pandemic. This is through a market avenue outside of Samoa, where the women’s products can be sold, earning them a steady income.
The significant changes in the lives of the empowered Nofotane women are, therefore, the human interest stories that must be shared. Most of these stories started with a problem, a challenge, or a trauma; on how these women’s roles in their families had transitioned from being unrecognized, undervalued, and looked down upon, to being recognized, valued, and included in family and community matters. Meet two of these brave women.”
Lapuloa Ioane of Levi Saleimo dreamt of becoming a Policewoman in the future, however, she got pregnant while still in school and gave up on my dream to raise a child.
“As a single mother, it was really hard. Knowing that I was a burden to my family, and then my child becomes an added burden, was emotionally stressful.
I attended the Nofotane Program by Samoa Victim Support in 2018 and learned how to make pork buns. From then onwards, I have been financially stable; I am more confident, and I have shared this skill with my relatives so that they too can develop their families. I am proud to say that I managed to develop my own family with my earnings.”
Asomaliu Fulitua 35 of Toamua resonates with the economic and social empowerment that Lapuloa Ioane has gained through the Nofotane Program. Asomaliu is not a television presenter.
A self-employed Nofotane woman who has earned a living from printing designed elei on fabric materials and even on the seis she creates. With her husband as the sole breadwinner of the family, his earnings could barely cater to the family needs, including their children’s education and medication.
Asomaliu’s participation in the Nofotane Program in 2018 introduced her to life as a businesswoman. Despite starting small, experiencing how she mixed the different colours for the fabric elei printing, the seed of hope has been planted.
She then sought her husband’s assistance to draw up different designs for her fabric printing, something her husband gladly supported Asomaliu with. According to Asomaliu “With my nagging, I was able to convince my husband to revive his talent as an artist, to help me create flower ornaments (sei) from rubber materials.”
What started as a sole business venture by Asomaliu has turned into a partnership with her husband, attracting customers to the couple’s colourful creations.
“As the Chair of the SVSG Board, I am grateful that SVSG has become part of the journey of these courageous women. Stay tuned for more human interest stories from the self-employed nofotane women, who are changing the narrative on ending violence against women in Samoa.” Georgina Lui. 
The Nofotane online market launch, is part of a project implemented by Samoa Victim Support Group, with funding from the European Union, through the Civil Society Support Program.