Address at the Handing Over Ceremony for Shoeshine Boys
Lautoka City, Lautoka, BA 16th October 2018

• The Chief Executive Officer – Lautoka City Council
• Government officials;
• Members of Lautoka Shoeshine and Wheelbarrow Association;
• Ladies and gentlemen;

Good morning and Bula vinaka to you all.

I would first of all like to thank the Manager Western and his staff for the invitation which was extended to me to officiate at today’s handing over ceremony of your uniforms and chairs which I believe will ease your work and offer more comfort to your clients.
The Ministry of Youth and Sports is your ministry and this assistance today is part of our assistance to youths around the country to help them and encourage them to earn an honest living.

My Ministry has been at the forefront in assisting shoeshine and wheelbarrow associations through the provision of uniforms and other equipment’s to assist in their work in our major townships especially in the Central Division.

Government, my dear friends, cares for the vulnerable and the marginalised youths. In doing so we have programmes in place to empower youths and enhance their abilities to generate income through legitimate means.

Government does not look down upon anyone; we are inclusive of all Fijians regardless of your ethnicity, your social background, your status in the community, your culture or your religious beliefs. We will reach all Fijians no matter how isolated you may be, Government is committed to reaching you and availing its services to you.

As youths of Lautoka I urge you all to set your priorities straight and strive for the best as an association as you will undoubtedly receive its due rewards.

You should aspire to greater things as an association and I would like to urge you to work hard to try and achieve something better as an association.

Set a target for you as individuals and also as an association so that the duties you carry out are worthwhile for you and your families, and I wish to call on you to always keep your loved ones in mind as you go about your daily duties.

Work together because you can achieve so much more as an association rather than as individuals and be proud of what you do and all that you have achieved so far because this is your hard earned efforts.

Never look down on yourselves because you are earning an honest income and are providing for your families and loved ones and that is what I want to remind you of. There is nothing that supersedes an honest living and one that is earned from the sweat of your brow.

The uniforms you are getting today will modernise your looks and presence and in turn improve the image of this beautiful city of Lautoka. The chairs will help your clients be more comfortable as you go about your business and I am sure will be an added comfort to the physically challenged.

I also encourage you to actively engage yourselves in any and all development works that is set to take place around your communities.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the Chief Executive Officer and the staff of the Lautoka City Council for your usual partnership in urban youth development and in this case helping to add value to the important services provided by these boys who are often looked down upon in society.

These uniforms will contribute to the vision of your city “To be the best health, cultural and sports tourism city in the South Pacific.”

With these few words, I wish you all the success in the future and may the handing-over of these uniforms be the start of bigger and better things to come for you.

To conclude, I look forward to more worthwhile and fruitful collaboration between my Ministry and the city of Lautoka and its youths in order to nurture friendly and fulfilling relationships that will help the growth of youth entrepreneurship in business and Governance.

Vinaka vakalevu.