Congratulations to all the athletes in Oceania for your inspiring performances over the last 17 days.
In the weeks surrounding and during the Olympics, all nations around the world prepare in their own ways and have their own celebrations. In Fiji, the culture is rich and unique. In more way than one, the culture helps to bring the people together. It is in the costumes, the dances, songs and stories that they celebrate being Fijian.
Christopher Yee, Fiji’s Chef de Mission said, “mixing with the Oceania region itself is quite exciting for us because we tend to have some kind of unspoken language between us (and) we tend to mingle very well.”As well as all the Oceanic regions all bonding together though cultural evenings and events, the nations also do so separately.
Dancer Kevueli Tavainavesi was born in England. He moved to Fiji when he was three and then grew up there. He moved back to the UK in 1999 but he brought a part of the Fijian culture back with him.
Taveinavesi has seen it essential to raise his children around some of the traditional Fijian culture. “It’s the importance of trying to get the culture, the tradition for the children, because most of them have been brought up here, so that way I can teach them the culture to let them know where they’re actually from.”
Culture is often seen as a part of a person’s identity and for many of the islanders, the culture is so rich and vibrant. It is something that they share.
In London during the first week of the Olympics, cultural celebrations and parties have occurred at the iconic St Katharine Docks. There has been an audience of both Islanders and European onlookers who have found an interest in the culture.
A Fijian ceremony was held on the 2nd August with members from FASANOC and some athletes celebrating and supporting their count
“It has been a great honour for me because I have never experienced anything like this before… it has brought so many people together… which is one great thing that the Olympics has done,” Taveinavesi sai
The culture of a nation does not only stay in that nation, especially during the Olympics. It is shared across the teams and the whole world. This year at London 2012, the world has had the opportunity to see the culture of Fiji and the other Pacific nations.