The signing of a tripartite partnership agreement through an MOU today between National Youth Development Authority (NYDA), PNG Sports Foundation (PNGSF) and Department of Community Development & Religion (DfEDR) paves the way forward for the engagement of our rural youths at the LLG levels to be given the opportunity to participate meaningfully ii sporting activities that will be hosted at the district level.
The National Youth Policy has four (4) Pillars. Pillar 4 on Health, Sports and Culture with a key objective to see ‘A young generation that have healthy lifestyle, physical fitness and cultural uniqueness’ can holistically be achieved through the concept of the Regional Youth Games (RYGs)
Pillar 4 of the NYP can only be effectively rolled out through collaboration and partnership; therefore, today we witness this important occasion to see NYDA Director General-Joe Itaki, PNGSF Executive Director-Albert Veratau, and Dept of Community Development & Religion a/Secretary-Jerry Ubase joining hands together to ensure that the RYG provides the avenue to identify raw talents of the youths in the rural areas.
The three (3) agency heads believe that engagement of youths in sports is a catalyst for character development, provides identity and purpose for the youths; keep youths occupied and out of trouble; has social benefits and enforces a growth mindset; instils discipline and team work; expose youths to positive role models; and bring opportunities to be selected to represent their district, province and country nationally, regionally and internationally in the name of sports.
RYG is an intervention that underpins the basic underlying principles on value adding, promoting unity and respect; participatory; rural development and identity of their culture and the promotion of tourism that will offer exciting and inspiring experiences as a sports-culture-creative-education-health tourism platform and product by providing benefit sharing opportunities and pointing visitors its way and giving access to ground breaking exhibitions and enrichment programs.
The Regional Youth Games (RYG) is district focused, and will be held in a selected district within a province in each of the 4 regions of PNG biennially. Through the RYG, rural youths are given the opportunity to participate and be selected in the inter-LLG games to represent their districts in the RYGs.
The RYG creates the pathway for youth to be selected to PNG Games, and then on to representing PNG in regional and international sporting events such as the Commonwealth Youth Games, mini pacific games and so forth.
The first trialled RYG was held in Wewak District of East Sepik Province in July last year (2020) which saw a number of districts within the Momase region participate.
With the MOU signed today, the rrst Inaugural Papua RYG will commence in Alotau, Milne Bay Province where selected youths in all districts within the Southern region will be attending. The games will be held on the 28th November-8th December 2021.
We invite partners to support this new concept to see our young people progress in sports development that will have a positive impact in their lives; and to also visit Alotau to see for yourself the games and how you can be engaged to complement your programs alongside the RYGs in the years to come.