Bishop Lyons Competition
Ugly Shakespeare Company visit to Roncalli
Pupils Alivereti Vereivalu (16, front left) and Lionel Monua (18, front right) may be at Roncalli College this week but their minds are at home in Fiji, which has been devastated by Cyclone Winston.
‘‘We were thinking about our family — coming to school but still thinking of home,’’ Alivereti (Freddie) said.
The pair were grateful to the school for supporting Fiji with a mufti-day fundraiser on Monday.
The February 20 storm claimed at least 42 lives and wiped out thousands of homes.
PHOTO: ALEXIA JOHNSTON Pupils and staff at Roncalli College in Timaru wore island attire on Monday to raise money for Fiji, which was hit tropical cyclone Winston, a category 5 event, on February
20. ' We were thinking about our family, coming to school but still thinking of
— Alivereti (Freddie) Vereivalu
The death toll stands at 42.
At the height of the storm, wind gusts reached up to 325kmh and there were waves up to 12m high, which made it one of the worst storms to hit in the southern hemisphere.
An estimated 35,000 people are sheltering in evacuation centres, some of which are damaged and running short of food and other supplies.
Fijian teens Lionel Monua
(18) and Alivereti (Freddie) Vereivalu (16) were among those who took part in Roncalli College's fundraising event, and were grateful to their peers for their efforts. The boys have taken a year out from their studies at the Marist Brothers High School in Suva to attend Roncali College for study and rugby purposes.
They arrived in Timaru on January 23, avoiding the devastation which has since spread across their homeland.
West Fiji was most affected, they said.
Lionel said his home village of Rotuma had escaped serious damage. There was widespread devastation in his mother’s home village of Vitogo which continued further west, where homes and other buildings were destroyed.
Naitasiri, Freddie’s home village, sustained flooding.
The boys said hearing news a cyclone was approaching Fiji was a concern, but not out of the ordinary.
‘‘The thing is the cyclone went away from Fiji and then it turned back,’’ Lionel said.
What added to their concern was its intensity, he said.
‘‘It was the biggest tropical cyclone in the southern hemisphere — that’s what it was believed to be.’’
There was nothing the boys could do but to go about their day and hope the cyclone would not be as strong as predicted.
‘‘We were thinking about our family, coming to school but still thinking of home,’’ Freddie said.
Power lines and phone connections were affected, making it difficult for the boys to make contact with family, but they eventually managed to do so via the internet.
The school has so far raised more than $770 from its mufti day, which would be given to the Fiji Red Cross Society. More money was still coming in, a school spokeswoman said.
Lionel and Freddie thanked those who had helped their homeland since the cyclone hit.
‘‘We are really, really grateful to the school especially,’’ Lionel said.
‘‘And to the New Zealand Government — by being the first [country] to help us in Fiji with their airways and aid,’’ Freddie said.
‘‘We both want to thank the school for their contribution. It will really help back home, especially the families that were affected the most,’’ Lionel said.
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Aoraki Senior Qualifying Tennis Tournament
Year 13's (below) getting into the spirit of the swimming sports.
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STUDENTS LEAVING THE COLLEGE GROUNDS
A reminder that all students are expected to remain on the College grounds for the duration of the College Day, 8:35am-3:30pm. If student need to purchase their lunch then they need to use the College Tuck Shop that is open at interval and lunchtime and has a range of options.The only exception to this is the Year 13 privilege that allows them to leave the grounds at lunchtime on Tuesday Wednesday and Thursday only. Year 13 students are to consume any bought food, offsite, as the College Tuck Shop has the sole contract to deliver food on site. Students are not to bring food bought from outside establishments onsite.
All students are expected to attend Assembly on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and be onsite in time for the bell at 8:35am. By coming together as a College we start as a family, with a prayer and/or reflection. If a student is unable to be on site by the bell parents are able to contact the College Office or write a note explaining the lateness and it will be acknowledged.