From the Field

Solomon Islanders welcome British Royals

On a visit to the Solomon Islands during a tour of Southeast Asia and the South Pacific, British royals William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, met villagers from Burns Creek, an urban community on the outskirts of the capital Honiara.

Cain Whitney, a Burns Creek resident and participant in World Vision’s youth employment program, showed his piglets to the royal couple.

Cain and his wife, Louise, operate a small pig farm. She also runs a canteen and cares for their 6-month-old son, Carl.

Local youth leader Ellison Mataifiri, 29, explained World Vision’s work in economic empowerment, saving, and employment to the couple and gave them an honorary savings passbook.

“They asked lots of questions. They wanted to know why we didn’t go to the bank [to get a loan], and I explained that people can’t read or write. The big banks are a long way away, and they won’t lend to us,” he says.

With help from World Vision, the Burns Creek community has started a successful savings project to help youth operate small agriculture and retail businesses.

These activities are giving young people motivation and skills for success.

 

With reporting by Laura Gemmel, a World Vision communications officer based in New Zealand. Laura is currently on assignment in the Solomon Islands.

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