Make your Adventure count #Vinakafiji
We love our country with a passion, which is why we operate a business that showcases its beauty to tourists. We believe the destinations and culture of the islanders are the most important aspects of our company and we want to ensure these gems of the South Pacific will be preserved for all to enjoy today and tomorrow.
The Yasawa Islands at first glance are ‘paradise’ and it’s this perfection that most travelers experience. However, to the people who live in remote island villages in the Yasawas, paradise is far from reality. Some of these small communities live without the basic needs of fresh water, power, education, and health facilities.
Founded in 2010 by South Sea Cruises Group (the parent company of Awesome Adventures Fiji), Vinaka Fiji is a charitable organization that gives back to the remote villages and communities of the Yasawa Islands. For every Awesome Adventures Package sold, FJ$10 is donated to Vinaka Fiji which helps to improve the basic needs and amenities missing from village life in the Yasawas. If you wish to help, you can make an online donation, or for more information on group voluntourism opportunities in the islands visit www.vinakafiji.org
The Vinaka Fiji communities
Despite the natural beauty of the Yasawa Islands, the 27 villages dotted throughout live below world standards of health and poverty. The people that call these islands home live far from the 'paradise' that first meets the eye. They struggle with severe shortages of clean drinking water, little to no health care, poor nutrition, a lack of educational support and supplies, inadequate power, and no sustainable way of life for the future.
What is Vinaka Fiji?
The Yasawa Trust Foundation was set up in 2010 to help villagers in the Yasawa Islands establish access to basic needs and amenities through fundraising and the Vinaka Fiji voluntourism programs. The Trust works directly with Yasawa Island communities so villagers are active in determining their own needs and participate in the planning and implementation of projects. All areas of development are designed to have a low environmental impact, with sustainability a key to the future.
Awesome Adventures Fiji's involvement
Awesome Adventures Fiji is a major sponsor of Vinaka Fiji. The Yasawas were largely isolated from Fiji's tourism industry until we took our maiden voyage into the islands in 2002. The Awesome Adventures Fiji team worked closely with the local village Ratus (chiefs) to ensure the arrival of tourists would be beneficial, not detrimental, to the islanders' way of life.
It soon became clear that something needed to be put in place to assist these villages and help travellers give something back to the islanders who welcome them so warmly. So, we helped to set up Vinaka Fiji. The name 'Vinaka Fiji' was chosen to reflect Awesome Adventures Fiji and our tourists saying "thank you (vinaka)" for allowing us to enjoy your beautiful islands''.
Since the start of Vinaka Fiji, Awesome Adventures Fiji has donated more than FJD$60,000 per year to the cause.
We continue to donate FJ$10 for every booking of 4 nights or more to Vinaka Fiji and offer our support in many more ways.