MAF flew in an outreach team to a remote community to build on their gender-based violence campaign. They saw encouraging signs of hope.
Story by Tajs Jespersen
It’s 9 o’clock in the morning in Yambaitok, and the children are gathered before school to start their day with joyful songs which echo through the mountains.
Since the first visit by the Senisim Pasin team to Yambaitok, the thriving school has begun Bible teaching as part of the classes.
“MAF they came here and they advised me to do good things… And at that time I started to teach students Christian Religious Fellowship every Thursday,” said the school’s deputy principal Joseph Dickson.
Senisim Pasin means to “change your ways” and the campaign aims to stop domestic violence and sorcery related accusations violence in PNG.
Betty Francis was a part of the team that went to Yambaitok and knows how important it is to create awareness about the issues.
“Here in Papua New Guinea, we see that a lot of ladies are being beaten up. So that's why we go out with this message to help the community realize that gender based violence is not good,” said Betty
Joel Lawa is also teaching at the school. He has attended the Senisim Pasin discussions and has a goal to help his students become shining examples in their village.
“I can teach the children to stay good and learn better in the future so that the community will look and see how the students learn,” said Joel.
Betty agrees that the children are key to the future.
“The kids as they grow up, knowing that message, they can change, they will change,” said Betty.
In Yambaitok, help is far away. The only access to the outside world comes through an airstrip which MAF flies to.
Micah Myers is a missionary from Ethnos 360 (Formerly New Tribes Mission) who has lived with his family in Yambaitok for three years. In this time he has seen how important the airstrip is.
“The school that's running here wouldn't be open if the airstrip wasn't here. If MAF wasn't able to bring the teachers in…We see the benefit that it brings to the community. It's a huge blessing,” said Micah.