Lose Sipiki received a timely call from her mother this morning to remind her how special this day is for her and the family. But Lose didn’t need reminding and she knew the call from her mother was actually a chance to celebrate as family and as Solomon Islanders the significance of Solomon Islands Independence Day.
Solomon Islands attained independence from Britain on this day in 1978 and it is a time for celebration and reflection for many Solomon Islanders.
“I think my mother’s call reminds us about our history. My mother likes to share her story with us, just to remind her children and her grandchildren where we come from.”
Lose, who was born in Samoa and moved to New Zealand when she was five, is an administrator with Etu Pasifika in Christchurch. Lose says that being part of the Etu Pasifika family is a blessing as she is encouraged to fully express both her Samoan and Solomon Islands heritage.
“Being proud of our Pacific cultures is very important, especially when you represent more than one”.
Solomon Islands Independence Day is one of the main public holidays in the country, which is located east of Papua New Guinea. The occasion is celebrated with a parade and other festivities throughout the day, including traditional dance performances and sports gatherings.
Lose has yet to visit the Solomon Islands but would one day like to take her mother back to connect with the wider family.
“She has been talking about her time in the Solomons and I know she would love to return someday.”
In the meantime, Lose ensures that her culture is thriving in her life by reminding her three young children to be proud of their Solomon Islands heritage.
“I let them know that even though the Solomon Islands is a small country, we can still stand out in the world and truly believe in who we are.”
Date: Wednesday 07 July 2021