Visit us on Facebook... more
How can I volunteer... more
How can I donate... more
Join our mailing list... more
Contact us

 

 

 

 

Family history Our Supporters

 

About us

The Links Fiji founder Sadhana Smiles was born in Suva Fiji and currently lives in Sydney Australia.

In 2008 Sadhana formed the Links Fiji to focus on health and education. "If we can teach the youth what the basic health issues are in Fiji and how to keep themselves healthy we would see less sick people at our outreach programs".

"There is also a critical need to educate women in particular on the importance of pap smears and breast exams; there are far too many cases being diagnosed too late or not at all. Education is one of the mediums we can use and our aim is to work in association with the government, local council and hospitals."

Sadhana's inspiration was Leba a 39 year old who died of cervical cancer leaving behind 7 children. She had a regular pap smear however was unable to afford the $2 bus fare to return to the clinic to obtain her results. As a result 2 years later when she did return it was too late. Sadhana promised Leba to look after her children but also use her story to ensure that women all over Fiji understand the importance of pap smears and follow up their results.

The trust raises money in Australia, New Zealand and Fiji.

We fund doctors and nurses each year to go to Fiji and work in our outreach programs and work with other NGO's.

The local hospitals often will have patients who are referred to us for off shore assistance or to provide funding for their medication.

Our Bluesky Magic program sends children who have terminal diseases away for a weekend to the Westin Hotel. The Bluesky Magic program was an inspired by Luisa who died of Acute Myeloid Leukaemia. Luisa simply wanted to live, grow up and be a nurse, sadly her this was not to be the case. When we met her at Lautoka hospital we realised that we could provide families some special time away. We have since refurbished two rooms for families to spend their last days with their children in private enabling them to say goodbye with dignity.

Why we do it

We can make a difference! Poverty is not just about a lack of money. Rather it is about poor education and health, lack of opportunities as well as socio-economic disadvantage and related self esteem issues. Cervical and breast cancer is prevalent in Fiji and diabetes and high blood pressure is at epidemic proportions. The impact of these illnesses on poor communities, with no social safety net, can be profound. The loss of a parent in many Fijian households can mean the difference between food on the table and destitution.

Poverty also has a greater impact on the health of women and the young. Links Fiji places a special focus on providing health care and advice to women of all ages within the community. Among other things we are able to create sustainable long term change by testing and teaching people about basic health care, importance of pap smears and breast exams and regular testing for blood pressure and diabetes.

The next generation of the South Pacific is entitled to basic health care and education and we can go a long way to ensuring this happens.

Back to top

 

Family history

 

Sadhana's Grandfather Patan was bought out from India with his family at the age of 8 in 1905 to work as an indentured labourer. The system was an alternate source of labour for the British Empire; it had been used successfully in other countries like Mauritius, Uganda and Nigeria.

Many say this is how the British reinvented slavery.

The initial period was for 5 years with the promise of paid passage back home. However if you were not an adult your indentue period was re-signed after the first 5 years.

The first labourers arrived in 1875 and in 1882 CSR Colonial Sugar Refinery which was an Australian run company set up its first sugar mill in Nausori. Families were housed in "lines" which in size were 10ft by 7ft.

The SS Fultala was the 50th ship to arrive with approximately 827 passengers of which Sadhana's grandfather was one of them. A total of 60,965 labourers were bought out to Fiji.

All indenture was cancelled in 1920 and approximately 60% of the gimitiers decided to stay.

There have been many stories documented on the living conditions and the treatment of these labourers however Patan was a man of great vision, determination and courage. He leased landed which he successfully farmed, educated all his 12 children, sent two of them to Australia for education. He was the first man to obtain a bus drivers license in his village and own a shop.

He was a man of firsts, great vision and pushed the boundaries, he was gentle and kind. The clinic is built on his land and his spirit provides us with the motivation and determination to continue to make a difference.

Back to top

 

Our supporters

 

Australia
Sadhana Smiles
Founder
sadhanasmiles@realchange.com.au
+614 0327 1676

Supporters
Julia Camm
Julia@corven.com.au
+614 3806 6069

Junior Ambasador
Jayitri Smiles
jay_smilezy@hotmail.com

New Zealand
Geoff Lovegrove
Supporter
geoffl@lovegroverealty.co.nz
+64 2139 4540

Fiji
Pravina Meghji
Supporter
Mobile +6799994582

Back to top