A NEW dawn is looming in Kinoya.
A suburb of Nasinu, Kinoya has brought up a lot of Fiji reps and sports stars who have made names for themselves on the international arena.
Former Fiji reps Marika Korovou, Viliame Gadolo, Kiniviliame Koroibuleka, Suka Waqabaca and former Wallaby Ilivasi Tabua all grew up in Kinoya.
And now it's time to break a new dawn for the future generation, the inaugural Kinoya Inter-Street sevens tournament sets a new start on the horizon.
Tabua, who was brought up in Kinoya in the late '70s, said they had formed the Kinoya Old Boys Association (KOBA) to organise and direct a new dimension for the youths who were mostly not accepted in the community. "We started this group called the KOBA to help build a new pathway for Kinoya. We want to see a new face of Kinoya.
"I know Kinoya is known for all the wrong reasons and this is one of the ways we think can uplift the new face of Kinoya," Tabua said.
"Growing up in here I believe this is something we want to give back to the community and help the young kids achieve a career in life."
Tabua assisted the 32 teams during training sessions. He said the abundance of raw talent in the area needed a hand to tap their potential.
"This tournament will set the platform for us. From here we will select the players to represent Kinoya in local tournaments. These boys are very talented but they needed the right guidance to groom them to be better in life," he said. Tabua, once known as the Human Skewer when he played for the Australian Wallabies, said using sports was the best way to solve the problems amongst young men.
"I mean these kids are young boys from 18, 22 and 23 years old and some of them are even older but they are youths and I think helping them will also help us.
"I grew up here and I think using sports is one of the best ways to rebuild a new community for Kinoya.
"A lot of people love sports as you can see the turnout during the tournament. I believe this can break the barrier ahead of us," Tabua said.
"Some of these kids are not accepted in the community but showing their talents and skills in sports can change everything.
"All we want to do now is to change their attitude and instil discipline in their lives and the environment they live in.
"If we make them live in a good environment then the sky is the limit. They can achieve anything in life if their attitude is tuned right.
"We are helping them and we are sacrificing everything to help them go up the ladder."
Tabua said it would take time to change Kinoya but they were optimistic of a positive outcome.
He said they had other projects to help the needy in the community.
"We have a farming project here in Kinoya where we visit families who are not well off."
Tabua who has achieved a milestone on the international arena is a role model for the young men of the suburb.
He remained optimistic that youths of Kinoya could be future stars of Fiji in sports.