Lemuel's Journey: From PALM Worker to Boxing Champion and Community Inspiration

20 February 2024

Lemuel Article   Dec

​Lemuel Silisia's journey to Australia began with a clear goal – to create a better life for his family and to pursue his sporting dreams of becoming a professional boxer. A dedicated worker from the Solomon Islands, Lemuel embarked on an inspiring journey when he joined the Pacific Australia Labour Mobility (PALM) Scheme with FIP Group. His story is one of motivation, personal growth and remarkable achievements, marked not only by his dedication to his family but his passion for boxing which made him a recognised name in the sport.

One goal and a big dream

Lemuel’s journey was motivated by a deep sense of responsibility and desire to support his family back home and achieve his sports dreams. When asked why he joined the PALM Scheme with FIP Group, he explained, "I saw this as a golden opportunity to work and support my six little brothers in the Solomon Islands and pursue my dream of becoming a professional boxer." This sense of responsibility and dedication fuelled his determination to work hard and make the most of his time in Australia.

Throughout his time here, Lemuel gained invaluable skills. He said, “I’ve learnt a lot of things like time management – showing up to work on time as well as food safety... these are skills I can take back home with me.” These skills have not only benefited his work however also equipped him for future endeavours.

Carving an identity in a small town

For Lemuel, the PALM Scheme gave him the opportunity to achieve a lifelong dream of becoming a professional boxer. He explained, “In the Solomons, even if you’re good at sport, to be successful it depends on who you know, rather than what you know... Australia is a big country with lots of opportunities in sport.”

Lemuel shared that boxing wasn't just a sport for him; it was a way to stand out and make a name for himself. He said, “If you say my name in the boxing space here in New South Wales, I think they’ll know who I am.” He proudly shared his achievements, including participating in national championships and winning regional titles. Lemuel's success in boxing resonates with his determination to excel in every aspect of life.

Reflecting on the best part of his Australian experience, Lemuel expressed gratitude for his boxing community which he now considers his family. He also believes that his involvement in community groups such as Park Run and church has created a support network for him in Australia.

Lemuel’s advice

Lemuel spoke about the importance of potential PALM Scheme workers understanding their purpose and being aware of their backgrounds before embarking on this adventure. He emphasised the significance of thinking beyond the immediate attraction of working abroad and considering how their journey could change the story back home.

“If there's a desire within you, you can't look at someone to push you. You have to push yourself,” said Lemuel.

An exciting journey ahead

Lemuel's story is a testament to how hard work, dedication, and seizing opportunities can change lives. His journey from a PALM worker to a boxing champion and community inspiration is a source of motivation for those looking to follow in his footsteps. Lemuel's message is clear: with a clear purpose and unwavering determination, anyone can achieve their dreams, no matter where they come from.