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  • Nigel Akuani 

Children Celebrate 'Universal Children's Day'

Port Moresby: More than a hundred children were happy and excited as they got to participate in commemorating Universal Children’s Day on Friday 20th November, at the Cheshire Disability Services in Hohola, Port Moresby.

As a gesture of strong support for the special kids attending the Centre, the occasion had the involvement of Religious Sisters from the Daughters of Mary Immaculate (DMI) Congregation, children and women from the communities of Sabama, Joyce Bay and Pari areas of Port Moresby.

The day had as its theme: ‘Children Take Back’ and was focused at upholding the scripture taken from (Mark 12:31) - ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself’.

Chief Guest Mrs Beth Jigo, Religious Education Head of Department at the St Joseph’s International Catholic College, delivered the keynote speech that dwelled on the day’s significance. “The celebration of the day is held as a way to improve and promote child welfare globally and I personally thank the DMI Congregation for taking the initiative of coming to the centre and celebrating this day with the children here,” she stated.

The day’s felicitation was given by Sr Catherine DMI, Country Director of HHI PNG Association. In her address she described the occasion as an opportunity to commemorate meaningfully the joy and love held for our children and urged for parents and guardians to be better role models. “Our children of today are the stars of tomorrow and every parent has a responsibility in caring and walking together providing the light of guidance essential for them to thrive,” she said.

Highlighting the purpose of the centre, Mr Bernard Ayieko, Cheshire Disability General Manager, said the centre was aimed at providing its services toward helping those less fortunate and neglected by society. “Despite this year being drastically affected and made difficult by COVID-19, we still remain adamant in our services and prayers for those in dire need,” he said.

Delivering her speech on the theme of the day and providing invaluable advice on becoming an effective role model, Ms Rachel Kume, Senior Staff of CDS, stated that the key to a better future for the country lay in the values and principles shown and taught to the children of today. “Do not be hasty, but instead encourage and praise your children to try new things and take a keen interest in appreciating and responding to child’s feelings. What you say and do matters,” she added.

An array of live performances were gladly presented by the children ranging from action songs, reading of a Children’s Poem to Pacific dances, that left many in the audience impressed. An interactive game exercise was also held on behalf of the handicapped children. A Christmas Dance performed by the group formally concluded the program of the day before the distribution of light refreshments.

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