Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A shop in Nabalebale

from w
It's good to see initiative in a Fijian village and here's a story about a woman who set up a little shop in Nabalebale, a village on the road between Savusavu and Labasa where the scenery is quite picturesque. The road isn't dusty though - it's tar-sealed.

It's back home for Arieta
Solomoni Biumaiono
Wednesday, February 08, 2012
(find picture) Arieta Seru outside her dainty shop at Nabalebale village. Picture: SOLOMONI BIUMAIONO

REMEMBER that dusty road, when it touches your feet, it finally registers in your head that you're back home?
Back to your village so to speak! Here is the story of Arieta Seru, the shopkeeper at Nabalebale Shopping Centre in Vanua Levu.
Arieta started off from her village in Urata several years ago to go to Suva to start a new life. She made some progress with her life in the big city. In Suva, she found a husband and is now the mother of their four children but then, after eight years in Suva, she sought a new beginning. And she found it nine months ago when she was given the opportunity to go back to her village.

"It was our family's arrangement. You see, my cousin runs a business in Suva and we discussed that I come here to Nabalebale to run this shop for him ù I jumped at the chance," Arieta says.

The Nabalebale Shopping Centre is one of two shops at Nabalebale village. It is located at the junction of the Wailevu West Road and the Labasa-Savusavu Highway which is a prime spot and a rest stop for those travelling down to the villages of Wailevu West and Bua. The shop sells groceries of every kind and Arieta surely runs a tight ship with her business even though she didn't receive any formal training business management.

"We do not have any problems with our supplies as our shop is constantly stocked by wholesalers from Labasa. It's only when we need something urgently do we order from Savusavu. Apart from that, in running a business, it's important that you keep records of your accounts because it's a business and you need to run it like that," Arieta says.

In the past nine months, Arieta says sales have been good. She's even managed to turn a little profit from her business venture. "I do not allow any credit so people understand my way of running the shopé" she said. "I am always careful when it comes to how I spend.

"I watch my spending because sometimes when money starts flowing into the business, shopkeepers always want to order more for their shops."

She has no regrets about her decision to turn a new leaf back home. In fact, she is content with what she has achieved in the short time she has spent as a shopkeeper. For her, this is one way of going back to her roots.

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