City youths use rugby league to score big for gender violence

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A GROUP of youths from a suburban rugby league club in Port Moresby want to advocate on social issues they see in their community.
M2 Mumuts club in the Morata Off Season Rugby League competition will be dedicating a match on Saturday to awareness on gender-based violence and social issues.
“The intention is to run certain programmes within our club, especially in terms of running awareness on social issues, especially gender based violence, HIV and AIDS, drug and alcohol abuse and other social issues that affect our daily livelihood of our communities,” club coach Ivan Tau said.
He said violence against women and children was increasing and they wanted to do something to address it.
“We’ve gathered our youths, also we managed to secure some brochures and certain awareness campaign material from CIMC (Consultative Implementation and Monitoring Council) which we will be issuing on match day on Saturday so that people are aware that we are not just playing rugby league but we are also helping to fight issues such as domestic violence, gender-based issues, HIV/AIDS and drug and alcohol abuse.
“All these social issues that are affecting us and we are seeing them in our communities at the moment.”
Tau said he wanted the youths to be involved. The youths range from 19 to 28 years of age.
“Right now, what the other NGOs are doing, although they are coming up with all sorts of awareness campaigns and all that, it is not really touching the community level,” he said.
“We are actually going to the very doors of people in the community to tell them that this is happening, and this is wrong, and that should not be happening so that is the kind of message that we want to drive, instilling it to our people,”
Tau said the club intended to make the awareness programme long term.
“Right now we are negotiating with some NGOs, especially CIMC, to come in, to step into to our club and run training for our youths,” he said.
“This is just for a start during the competition. We are also planning on sharing those ideas with other clubs that are affiliated in the competition so that we do it in a mass kind of a way.
“Every club gets involved so the message is brought out to the public through their respective clubs.”
Tau said the girls from the M2 Mumuts volleyball competition would take part in the awareness.