Love Letters to South Auckland
South Aucklanders may have been feeling disheartened by the shade thrown around around this week in the wake of the Papatoetoe Covid outbreak, but despite the constant negativity sent their way, that Southside tenacity has been shining through.
We all know how resilient our aiga there have been, in withstanding living around the biggest border entry and being the home to most essential workers.
* Image above of a group of students from South and wider Auckland who peacefully marched through Otahuhu in a display of inter-school solidarity last year.
Although many have turned to online negativity, a bunch of people have also come to South Auckland's defense. People like Auckland Councillor on the North Shore, Richard Hills tweeted a thank you to South Auckland a few days ago.
Counties Manukau District Health Chairperson Vui Mark Gosche said to media recently: “New Zealand owes a debt of gratitude to these people, to the constant, ongoing work they do, without complaint. They just get on and do it.”
He also singled out the local Māori and Pacific healthcare workers. “You watch who’s doing the vaccinating and who’s doing the testing, and it’s almost always our Māori and Pacific workforce, right at the front lines. We owe a lot to them, as they do the jobs that others might baulk at, but there’s been no reluctance to get in and do that real frontline stuff that’s keeping us all safe.”
We know that South Auckland could use some defense right now, but more than that we also know that they could use some love. Yesterday a poll went up on the FreshTV Instagram for people to send in anonymous messages of love to South Auckland. They asked people to complete the simple sentence “Dear South Auckland...”. In a short amount of time, they received an overwhelming amount of love for Southside.
Here are a handful of their favourite love letters they received addressed to the Southside:
“Dear South Auckland, I have mad respect for how resilient you are throughout all the hate”
“Dear South Auckland, yall are the baddest n are constantly fighting at the frontline for us all! Thank you!”
“Dear South Auckland, you have had the most testing and the most essential workers. Despite the minor setback, SA doesnt deserve all the hate. Yall are holding it down.”
“Dear South Auckland, I love you. Thank you for being my home <3”
“Dear South Auckland, Whatever WE go through, WE get through! S.A TO THE WORLDDDD”
“Dear South Auckland, my home, my fatu, and family. Selfless and Courageous. My village. I do it for you! Always”
“Dear South Auckland, keep your head held high. Im sorry that people are so unkind to you. I support and love you xo”
“Dear South Auckland, you will always be home no matter what country I may reside in. Miss you. Love you. 79 to infinity.”
“Dear South Auckland, keep your head up. Be strong. We will only get past this if we stick together and do this as one.”
“Dear South Auckland, you are beautiful and I love you wholeheartedly <3”
“Dear South Auckland, thank you! We see you and we appreciate you. Alofa atu.”
“Dear South Auckland, you have been affected by covid the worst. With cases, losing jobs, and more. Keep fighting!”
There is so much to celebrate about living in the wonderful Pacific ecosystem in the villages of the Southside. Let's give them all the flowers and love they deserve right now.
David Dallas, Sid Diamond and Mareko with their ode to the Southside.