The best job in the world

Friday April 03, 2020 Written by Published in Outer Islands
Manuae. Photo Credit: Air Rarotonga. Manuae. Photo Credit: Air Rarotonga.

Imagine: A remote tropical island of your own, far from the reach of Covid-19, where you would spend all your days swimming and fishing and relaxing on the beach with your partner.

And you’d be paid for it.

This sounds like a dream; in fact, it may be the best job in the world.

The National Environment Service is on the search for two rangers, preferably a couple, to live on and take care of the atoll of Manuae, an uninhabited island three hours boat trip from Aitutaki.

One of the last people to live there was Faimau Pupuke Robati, who spent six months there in 1985, when he was 14. “It was absolutely pristine then,” he remembers.

Robati had accompanied his older late brother Sema and fishery workers from Rarotonga on the MV Ravakai, to Manuae. The crew lived in one of the old buildings that was built during the copra production days.

 “We lived on fish, rice, kuru, and the island was clean,” he says. “Seafood was plentiful, the Ravakai would deliver ice that would keep the fish chilled.”

Last year Robati revisited the island with a close friend Charlie Quarter, to find Charlie’s mother’s grave. He was devastated at island’s state. “Mamae tikae toku ngakau, I was heart-broken,” Robati says.

“The reef was bare of paua about a kilometer from each side of the passage, the island was a mess with manmade rubbish, and asbestos roofing lying around – that government needs to clean up.”

Robati said he had expressed his interest to live on Manuae to take on the role of  caretaker for no wages – now the role is being advertised.

Environment Service director Nga Puna said he was saddened and disappointed at the state of Manuae when he visited last year.

“There was a lot of marine litter brought to its shore by the tides, cans and plastic left behind by people and scattered roofing iron from homes built in the copra days,” said Puna.

“It was demoralising to see that vast amount of work that needed to be done.”

In February, Puna attended a meeting on Aitutaki with the executive of  Manuae’s  landowners, the Aitutaki island council and members of parliament.

“All present unanimously agreed for the National Environment Service to manage the place,” said Puna.

“It’s a milestone for us, with assistance from Marine Resources, we can rebuild Manuae.”

The last draft regarding the island was drawn up in 2006.

“Ideas for plans to keep the motu and wet lands protected including Te Au O Tu are already stated in the draft,” said Puna. “At the moment there are no regulations in place.”

“We want to assist, to restore the island back to its natural beauty.”

The advert seeks two peopled, aged 40 or under, preferably with a background on Aitutaki They should have at least 10 years boat handling experience, on the lagoon and outside the reef, and must be a jack of all trades. “Apart from boat handling, you will also be the mechanic, the electrician, the builder, tractor operator, the planter, the chef, the cook, the fisherman, etc.”

First choice will be given to couples, and the arrangement is for a year – just long enough to see out the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic.

**Manuae Ranger x2

 

Must be:

1. Aitutakian and resident of Aitutaki for at least 5 years.

2. 40 years of age and below, Fit and healthy to live on Manuae full-time. (compulsory full Medical Health Check required). The job requires a lot of manual labour on an uninhabited Island and miles and miles of walking.

3. Have at least 10 years minimum of boat handling both inside the lagoon and outside the reef. Added advantage, if you have travelled to Manuae and captained the boat there and back. (requirement for at least 1 Ranger).

4. Must be a Jack of all trades. Apart from boat handling, you will also be the mechanic, the electrician, the builder, tractor operator, the planter, the chef, the cook, the fisherman, etc (requirement for at least 1 Ranger).

***First choice will be given to couples, as this will be your new place of resident for 11 months of the year and companionship is important.

 

NB: This is a 1 year at a time arrangement depending on the Rangers, whether they prefer to carry on or not.

 

If you fit the requirements above-mentioned, either by yourself or with your spouse/partner, please email your CV and cover letter to the Director of National Environment Service.

email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Deadline for applications: Thursday 10am, 9th April 2020.

13 comments

  • Comment Link Manga mea .... There was a job application for a ranger for Manuae  Advertised by Nga Puna, via buy and sell last week.. Application will closed 9/4/20 which is tommorrow.  I have noticed that the post have been taken down, since i have questioned him abo Thursday, 09 April 2020 14:39 posted by Manga mea .... There was a job application for a ranger for Manuae Advertised by Nga Puna, via buy and sell last week.. Application will closed 9/4/20 which is tommorrow. I have noticed that the post have been taken down, since i have questioned him abo

    Manga mea .... There was a job application for a ranger for Manuae Advertised by Nga Puna, via buy and sell last week.. Application will closed 9/4/20 which is tommorrow.

    I have noticed that the post have been taken down, since i have questioned him about the legality of the job application and how it came about?

    These are my conversations, questions, and response to and from Nga.

    3/4/20 Friday
    Love manuae ..lived and worked on manuae during the construction of the airport..
    David Rio.

    3/4/20 Friday
    Just wondering if manuae is still run by the atu enua committees..reason i ask papa rio and all the atu enua committees worked hard to ensure manuae wasn't developed or not to be controlled by the Government. David Rio

    4/4/20 Saturday
    Kia orana e nga ...akaieie te manako ..uianga taaku in regards of how this job application all came about..

    1..naai te tikaanga or under what authority. o teia akanoonooanga ite caretaker no manuae?

    No te mea te akaranga nei koe note iti tangata aitutaki...and if that is the case me ka tika akaari ia mai kia matou te iti tangata, also te atu enua no manue te minute i roto i te reira uipaanga..
    E nga, ka turuturu au ia koe e toou manako as long you can show us te au atu enua te intention i roto i teia akanoonooanga .
    what we dont want to happen eaa kia o ki roto ite akanoonooanga ate kavamani..thank you atupaka e nga .
    David rio

    Teia te pauanga a Nga Puna

    David Rio tei Tapuaetai teia no teia nga ra, me oki ki te Enua ka pm atu.
    E Tuanga Taporoporo ua teia e kimi ravenga nei i te tiaki, utuutu i teia Parataito e aru ia nei e te tatou rai e pera katoa te au pai e tere nei i roto i to tatou moana. Kare teia e apai ke i te tika a te au Atu Enua, inara ko ta matou tuanga rare teia ko te akonokono i to tatou Aorangi kia vai ruperupe ua. Te Atua te aroa

    5/4/20 Sunday

    E nga, me ka tika pau mai koe i taaku i ui atu kia koe i muake ..akatau atu nei au i taau i pau mai ..kare rava e tano anga, i only ask for two things,
    1. which authority and body you come under,
    Theres only two. Either the government,
    or Te au Atu Enua committees..
    please provide the relevant document for us to see, because you stated the people of Aitutaki, me ka tika Pau ia mai te uianga..meitaki atupaka.
    David Rio.

    8/4/20 wednesday
    Nga Puna, Kia Orana,
    Te tiaki atu nei au, kia pau mai mai koe i taaku i pati atu kia koe i mua ake. Ko te a teia o te ra, kare koe i pau mai. Apopo ra 9 April 20, Kua topiri te application no tetai tangata tiaki ia Manuae(island ranger) according to your advert.
    Teia taaku i pati atu.
    1.Naai teia i akatupu e te akanoonooanga.?
    2.Naai teia tikaanga(authority or body) do you represent?

    3. E rua rae tikaanga(authority or body).

    Either Na te
    Au Atu Enua Kumiti(committees)
    Or Na te Kavamani..

    Kare au e irinaki e na te au Atu Enua Kumiti (committees) teia akanoo'nooanga , no te mea kare koe i aka'ari mai i te reia.

    Taaku akatau anga te akaoki akaou ia nei tatou mei te tuatau rae i o ana a manuae ki roto ite manamanata e te tika kore a te kavamani. Na tei reira manamanata i iki iai te tai au Kumiti (committee's) mei roto mai i te au atu enua ,
    Kia vai rae te tika ete akaare o Manuae ki raro ake ite akateretere anga a te au Atu enua kumiti(committees), which means everything relating to Manuae.

    Te vai nei rae te reira ture e kua akamana ia teia i roto ite are akava'anga. Te aiteanga , ka noo rae a manuae ki raro ite akateretere anga,e te tikaanga, e te akanoonooanga kite au Atu enua kumiti(committees) i Aitutaki.

    Akakore iatu te reira manako no kotou i ta kotou e anoano nei no Manuae a muri ake.

    DONT YOU DARE DEVELOPE MANUAE!!!!, for the gain of a few. (I believe that is the intention of a minority).

    Dont you dare disrespect te maroiroi o to matou au metua ete au Atu enua Kumiti who fought hard for Manuae.

    Manuae can sustain itself..its been like that for so long.
    Manuae dont need us,
    Few need Manuae because of the wealth and resources.

    LEAVE MANUAE Alone..!!!!!

    Araura enua, eaa e tuku ua i te tika a te kavamani e te Island Council, they have nothing to do with manuae, kare o ratou tika anga.

    Te tika anga openga na te au Atu enua Kumiti (Committees...), kua moe te tai papaki, te ora nei rae te tai.

    In memory of our Father Papa Rio Tuiravakai, and all the Atu Enua kumiti and others that fought for Manuae

    E ngari ia Ripo te vaanga akari

    Te Atua te aroa

    David Rio
    Wednesday 8/4/20

    To all Those who is thinking of applying, think twice.. or you will also be involved in this corruption.. This job application is to build more profile for the government..nothing to do in preserving Manuae, if they do, it will only be for their own gain and not for the people. They have already selected who they will put on Manuae I believe, This person will be controlled by them, and rules will be enforced by the Gorvernment the way they want , on the running of manuae which means, people have no say in it..
    Putting out this job application is just a formality...

    The names or people to be considered should have been discussed in the Atu Enua Kumiti (committees) Forum, Aitutaki is a small place they will know who is best suited

    MY father papa Rio Tuiravakai and the Atu Enua Kumiti (Committees) and others went down this track once before which ended up in court...and sounds like we are going down that track again.
    The Atu Enua Kumiti won the case, Manuae is to remain and to be governed by and under the authority of Te au Atu enua kumiti o Aitutaki aka Araura enua. That's where it sits to this day.

    My name is David Rio
    Kia Orana

  • Comment Link Matekeiti Trego Tutai Wednesday, 08 April 2020 01:42 posted by Matekeiti Trego Tutai

    Hello there me and my Australian partner would love to apply for the job we are planning to retire in the cook islands in Rarotonga but given this opportunity will make it easy for us to build our dream home and business

    Thanks
    Matekeiti Trego Tutai

  • Comment Link Matarani Simona Sunday, 05 April 2020 11:31 posted by Matarani Simona

    How do you apply for this position.
    Meitaki atupaka

  • Comment Link Sarah Croxford Saturday, 04 April 2020 13:57 posted by Sarah Croxford

    Kia orana
    My partner and I would absolutely love this opportunity.
    We have plenty of boat handling experience and my partner is an engineer, and we are both great in the kitchen and garden/we have spent a lot of time in the bush!
    We hope to hear from you! Thanks!

  • Comment Link Nick Clephane Saturday, 04 April 2020 12:11 posted by Nick Clephane

    Hi there
    Very interested to know more about this role, I’m free to travel at anytime as currently work remotely with no fixed ties.
    My background is in automotive engineering and auto electrical with also experience in the agricultural engineering industry as last job sole charge operation in management of agriculture engineering workshop.
    If you’re interested to know more about me feel free to email me at any stage.

    Regards nick Clephane

  • Comment Link Tafale Matafeo Saturday, 04 April 2020 08:03 posted by Tafale Matafeo

    Kia Orana,

    Look no further. I have spent the last 10 years sailing a round the South Pacific.
    I have experience in marine industry I also have all the skills building plumbing electrical you need.
    And I’m a South Pacific Islander that has loved and worked and grown in the islands contact me for more information. My partner also has lost of skills to complement.
    Meitaki

  • Comment Link Jack Staniford Friday, 03 April 2020 21:20 posted by Jack Staniford

    Hi there,

    I have sent you an email to resources@cookislands.gov.ck regarding this job. My wife and I believe we would be ideal candidates for this and would love to have some more information. Please dont hesitate to contact us.

    Many thanks,

    Jack and Carolina

  • Comment Link Melissa Friday, 03 April 2020 18:25 posted by Melissa

    Hi,
    Could someone please advise where applications should be sent for consideration for the position.

    Thank you

  • Comment Link Maka and Ash Gardiner Friday, 03 April 2020 15:44 posted by Maka and Ash Gardiner

    Hi there, wow what an opportunity that comes once in a lifetime. My partner and I would be honored to do this and to be the caretakers of the whenua. Truly would be a remarkable experience hope to hear from you.

    Nga mihi

  • Comment Link David Hoeft Friday, 03 April 2020 13:41 posted by David Hoeft

    Kia Orana again
    I sent an earlier email referring to the article in the CI newspaper. I now realise I've emailed you my, Expression of Interest for the position.
    Are you in a position to forward my email to the office concerned.
    Meitaki
    David

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