News Story

Teams Unite to Support Tonga Netball 

A great team effort culminated in Tonga Netball Association being the recipients this week of thousands of dollars’ worth of netball uniforms and bags from Netball North Harbour, Auckland, New Zealand. 


The opportunity was identified by New Zealand-based Furniture for Schools Charitable Trust (FFS) founder Callum Blair’s daughter, Mikayla Blair, who works for Netball North Harbour and does Charity work with FFS.

The recipient in Tonga was identified by Sister Susan Parr, wife of Garrick Parr, manager of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' Tonga Service Centre.

Sister Parr learned of the need through her service as vice-president of the Tonga Women’s International Social Club (TWISC).The project was then facilitated with the help of Mr Blair’s fellow trustee in FFS, John McLean, and LDS Charities (the humanitarian arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). 

Over the past four years, FFS has partnered with LDS Charities and delivered approximately 100 containers of donated school furniture, books and sports uniforms to schools in Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, Marshall Islands, Kiribati and Vanuatu.

Just prior to meeting with the Netball Association, Mr Blair, Mr McLean and Mr Parr visited with the Tongan Minister of Education, Penisimani Fifita and his Deputies, to discuss their ongoing partnership and the proposed expansion into furnishing kindergartens that the Tongan Government is looking to pilot, as well as more needy schools.

They also visited several government schools that had already been grateful recipients of furniture and books from FFS and LDS Charities.

When interviewed by Tonga TV, both Callum Blair and John McLean expressed that their hopes were that the uniforms and equipment would assist in the development of netball skills in Tonga.


They also said they hoped the donation would improve the general health of youth and players, thus combating the prevalence and incidence of diabetes in Tonga.

Tonga Netball Association CEO, Salote Sisifa, assured Blair and McLean that the generously gifted items would be put to good use and distributed to many teams throughout the Kingdom of Tonga, including those located in the very northern Niuas Island Group.  

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