Still working at 65

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Ravin Nath Prasad with a day’s harvest. Picture: NAVNESH REDDY

One must develop the culture of hard work says Ravin Nath Prasad. The 65-year-old farmer of Carreras Rd, Votualevu in Nadi believes there is no age for retirement and one should always be ready for any kind of work.

Born in a farming community in Legalega, Nadi, his interest in growing vegetables started early in life and shaped him to be resolute and determined.

“We moved to Nadele, in the interior of Nadi, where farming was our life,” he said.

Fondly known among friends as ‘Ben’, he says, in life, a person should persevere in order to provide for his family. “We grew sugarcane and vegetables to earn a living,”Mr Prasad said.

“I raised my children and put them in school through money I earned from farming.”

He said, like many farming parents his folks were also poor and it was difficult for them to bring up a total of 10 siblings.

“I went as far as Year 3. My dad didn’t have much money, so we survived with whatever little we had.

“I do not like to sit idle and have a firm belief that I would only stop if my legs gave up on me.

Mr Prasad said he liked attending religious events because they allowed him to spend time with friends and family over a bowl of kava.

“I urge youths to work hard for a better future because once you have a family, you will realise how important it is to work.

“In life, one must be honest with work and not cheat.” He said, the cyclone season and extreme weather conditions such as drought have been major contributing factor to his losses.

“However, farming keeps me busy, gives me purpose in life, makes me meet new people and interact with them.

“I am not a big scale farmer nor have I a huge parcel of private land. My friend has allowed me to farm on a portion of his land and for that I am very grateful.”

Mr Prasad said there was good money in farming, but one had to work hard in order to reap rewards.