He who opens a school door, closes a prison. – Victor Hugo
AS the Covid-19 pandemic upgrades to cases of the Delta variant, this brings more challenges for a local charitable organisation and the nation as a whole.
Life PNG Care’s education programme Strongim Pikinini Education is affected seriously. It is quite likely that 400-plus unfortunate children and youth who are beneficiaries will lose their chances to continue their education next year. These are children and youth in elementary, primary and tertiary institutions as well as those in the mobile school programme.
These are not ordinary children and youths; they are a special group who have been picked up from the streets and settlements of Port Moresby eight years ago. They have been groomed and trained to be responsible citizens for tomorrow. Each one has been given a chance, an opportunity of a life time to fully benefit under Life PNG Care’s Strongim Pikinini Education programme to continue their education until graduation.
“This year we sent a total of 425 students to school.
Three of these students are studying in university, 86 are in secondary school, 226 are in primary school and 185 are in elementary school in PNG,” Life PNG Care director Collin Pake says.
“We also have 125 in our mobile schools,” Pake says.
Appeal for the Life PNG Care Strongim Pikinini Education programme
Out of the 425 students attending school this year, 118 are girsl, two of whom are currently studying at the University of PNG. They have been benefiting from Life PNG Care’s Strongim Pikinini Education programme since 2013.
“In order for these special children and youth to continue their education next year, we are now appealing to the Government, donors, business houses, individual and other stakeholders to kindly make funding donations to support our Strongim Pikinini Education programme in 2022,”Pake says.
“All Life PNG Care’s fundraise activities have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic since 2020. Life PNG Care is facing a huge challenge now to raise about K400,000 to fund its education programme next year.
“It seems like the deadly virus will rob 500-plus children’s future as we continue to face these challenges. Their hope and aspiration to become someone in the future can fall apart if they are pushed back into the streets.
“Today we read the headlines, continue to see and hear about sex trade and human trafficking going on at an alarming rate.
“In addition, the number of out-of-school children in PNG has reached a catastrophic level – almost a million-plus school aged children are out of school.
“Therefore, let’s not push these children and youths back into the streets to add up to the statistics of social disorder.
“You can stand with us now to shoulder this together. Let’s give our children and youth a second chance in life, a life that is promising. Let’s be part of the solution, be responsible citizen,” says Pake.
“If you are able to help us once again, we would love for you to donate today.”
Donations will go directly into funding the Strongim Pikinini Education and Mobile School programmes in 2022.
To support the education programme, please kindly contact Life PNG Care on 7347 6302 or by email [email protected] To learn more about Life PNG Care’s programme and activities, please visit the Life PNG Care website: www.lifepngcare.org
The centre’s education programmes have had tremendous success since 2013 when only eight students were assisted to school under the Strongim Pikinini Education pgrogramme. The mobile school started later in 2017 with 45 students.
In 2021 there are 425 students in the Strongim Pikinini Education programme and 105 in mobile schools.
Over the years Life PNG Care has had the support of corporate citizens in the country to successfully run these programmes.
The pandemic has adversly affected the organisation’s fundraising efforts including the annual charity dinner from which it has generated most of its operational funding. Life PNG Care is therefore reaching out to the public in this appeal to sustain the successful and rewarding education programmes.
- Story and pictures supplied by Life PNG Care