By CRETILDA ALOKAKA
NINE years ago when he was just 16, Titus Mokagai left his parents and siblings at their home in Omarakana village, Trobriand Island, Milne Bay, to look for better education opportunities in Port Moresby.
“I wanted a good education and a good job so I can support my parents and siblings. I am the third eldest. I have two elder brothers and two younger sisters.”
It was a big sacrifice for a teenager to make but he realised that his parents were subsistence farmers and he must do something to support them.
Young Titus decided to leave the comfort of his home, family and village to look for opportunities in the big world so that he could provide for them.
An opportunity arose in 2012 after he had completed Grade Eight at the Omarakana Primary School. His uncle (mother’s brother) was leaving for Port Moresby and Titus decided to go with him.
In 2013, he enrolled in Grade Nine at the Kila Kila Secondary School and continued his education there until he passed Grade 12.
In 2017, he joined Don Bosco Technical Institute to study metal fabrication and welding technology. But he had to withdraw because of school fee problems.
“I had to look for part-time job and gain work experience. A month later, I joined Theodist Stationery as a helper in the showroom.”
The manager of another company watched him at work and was impressed with his performance. He offered him a job. So in 2020, Titua joined the company as a supervisor. During the second month, he was sent to Samarai Island to work on the solar pilot project contracted by PNG Power Limited.
“I was sent to Samarai to work under NiuPower Energy which is owned by Glory Investment. I was there to install solar panels for the solar project.”
He completed the project after nine months and returned to Port Moresby.
But the money he managed to save while working was not enough to allow him to return to Don Bosco and the courses he was pursuing.
He had to look for another institution to attend to achieve his goal. A friend mentioned to him about the Mapex training institute.
“I was searching for a school to attend when I heard about Mapex Training Institute from a friend.”
“ I wanted a good education and a good job so I can support my parents and siblings. I am the third eldest. I have two elder brothers and two younger sisters.”
During the six years he had spent working, he saw the importance of occupational health and safety in the workplace. He decided to learn more about the subject and maybe design a career around promoting a safe and healthy work environment.
“I wanted to know more about safety in the workplace. So I registered for the Safety and Occupational Management programme.”
He received the Level One and Level Two certificates two weeks ago on Occupational Health and Safety Environment, Security and Quality.
He is now planning to pursue a Diploma in Occupational Health, Safety, Environment, Security and Quality from Don Bosco. It will put him in good stead in securing a good job – to support his parents and siblings.
For that was the reason he had made the sacrifice in the first place to leave his family and home behind nine years ago to come to come to Port Moresby.
Titus knows that he is slowly, yet surely, moving towards that goal.