Children are the change for a better tomorrow

A two-day men’s forum was held on October 11th and 12th in Port Moresby and hosted by the Ministry for Religion, Youth and Community Development, with the theme surrounding Gender Based Violence (GBV).
Although there were many government bodies present to discuss the issues surrounding GBV, according to Chief Censor Mr Steven Mala, there were not many representatives from the non-government organization whom he said would have more insights and details entailing the topic at hand.
Mr Mala was the final speaker of the two-day forum and his message was the highlight of the forum. He emphasized more on awareness stressing the importance on how to change the mindset of men in Papua New Guinea (PNG).
Mr Mala claimed that PNG is a culturally oriented society where our behaviour is determined by the way we were brought up therefore, majority of the men in PNG do not have the ability to manage their anger and it all boils down to how men were raised as being superior over women.
‘Culturally, violence against women is an accepted norm in the country,’ he said
However, that does not give men the right to be violent against women regardless of being right or wrong, violence is still wrong.
Mr Mala emphasised that if our country wants to see change in gender based violence, we must start by changing the mindsets of individuals, especially young people today, and we have to start from home. He said if we fail to do that, PNG men will be the same.
He further elaborated that our culture and belief system as Papua New Guineans has a major influence on the way we think and act towards situations that we are confronted with on a daily basis surrounding gender based issues.
The Chief Censor added that the cultural barrier should be harmonized with positive modern changes for a better and responsible society. He said women should be seen as partners and not as servants or housemaid in nation building.
He also informed the forum on what the Office of Censorship was doing as a way forward in educating the younger generation on how to be responsible adults in the future through the school awareness program that is ongoing.
He also challenged parents to have a close supervision when children view films and also to set good examples for them to have a responsible and sensible future generation.
In conclusion, Mr Mala summarised that equality and censorship starts at home and the bigger responsibility is on us as parents and as individuals.

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