This week they are talking a lot about an Australian lady, Mary McKillop, and the idea that she is a saint, well I think there are many sweet-tempered but energetic women in Fiji that fulfill the role of a modern-day saint. Don't blush Olivia, but you are a lovely lady! One day we climbed up the steps at Dilkusha and talked with Olivia on the verandah, overlooking Dilkusha Church and the new bridge. Her hospitality and stories at that time took us back many years to our numerous visits to Dilkusha, especially the year we lived at Shantinwas down below the hillside.
from the Fiji Times today:
A good leader loves, commits, dedicates
Saturday, October 09, 2010
BEING a good leader requires commitment, dedication and love, says Deaconess Olovia Nataniela, head of the orphanage, Dilkusha Children's Home, in Nausori. She first set foot in Dilkusha after she joined the Deaconess Order in the Methodist Church of Fiji and Rotuma in 1967 where she had to complete a one-month practical training. Deaconess Olovia was appointed to Dilkusha in 1987 and has since dedicated her life to the underprivileged children of the home. Widely known and recognised for her selfless love and care for the children, Deaconess Olovia says leadership requires humble qualities.
"For me, it was the upbringing from home, my little island of Rotuma, where I learned and felt the love within the family," she said. "Love in the home is very important. What I've learnt from faith and my upbringing has made the person I am today. In terms of leadership, I think there are many challenges and responsibilities that come with it. I believe a good leader is someone who is constantly committed and believes in what they are doing. You have to possess these qualities in your heart, commit yourself and love what you are doing," Deaconess Olovia said.
She said the children of the home had always been her main priority and concern. "In the morning before the children go to school, I must sit with them and pray for them before they go," she said."I believe that education for children is very important."
Originally from Motusa in Rotuma, Deaconess Olovia was brought up by her grandmother. She said the virtues and values instilled in her early life made her the woman she is today. "Growing up, I never thought I'd be a leader but what I have learnt is from my faith in God and his love. When people ask me how I came to know God, I tell them it was through my upbringing in Rotuma," Deaconess Olovia said. "The support and people I meet that come to the home, I've also learnt from them. We cannot be a good leader on our own. I wish all the leaders of the country all the best." Deaconess Olovia continues to be mother and father to about 28 children at the home.