TIPNG 2021 Bougainville ACE Program Boosts Civic Capacity And Regional Unity
With the official closing of Transparency International PNG (TIPNG) Bougainville Active Civic Engagement (ACE) program last Friday, the participation of five young men and women from the notorious Konnou “no-go-zone,” in South Bougainville has now yielded a hallmark of unity for the Autonomous Region of Bougainville (AROB).
48 participants representing 17 youth associations and three secondary/high schools from all 13 districts of Bougainville attended the program, including the five from Konnou. In what was the first time for youths from within the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) designated “red-zone,” to interact and participate with their peers from other districts.
The five-day Active Civic Engagement program was held at Tunuru mission station in Arawa and facilitated by TIPNG in partnership with the Bougainville Youth Federation (BYF), the Autonomous Bougainville Government Department of Community Development and the Australian Government. The primary focus of the program was to raise awareness of civic potential and engagement among Bougainvillean youths. As well as to build the capacity of the BYF youth network in identifying and analyzing issues within their respective communities and developing and implementing realistic solutions at the community level. Participants were also guided through a series of sessions, discussions, and activities which reinforced positive leadership values and their application in real-world scenarios.
The program also included exposure to formative examples and role models for the participants, through a roster of inspiring Bougainvilleans. including ABG Speaker of Parliament Simon Pentanu, ABG North Bougainville Women’s Representative Amanda Masono-Getsi, and renowned filmmaker and artist Llane Munau, among others. Who took time out to speak to the participants and share their experiences of governance and leadership.
“The need for civic participation and engagement in both our national and sub-national governance frameworks is just as critical as ever. Our ACE program is specifically designed to moderate the general over-reliance on the government to solve our issues at the community level. By promoting and encouraging greater personal responsibility and teaching young people how to effectively model and implement initiatives, using whatever resources are at their disposal,” TIPNG Chief Executive Officer Arianne Kassman.
“We are proud of our participants, and we hope that they can each take it one step further, by sharing what they have learned under this program with their peers and other individuals within their respective communities,” she said.
All 48 participants graduated from our 2021 Bougainville Ace Program last Friday in a small closing ceremony, Each receiving a certificate of participation. The TIPNG ACE program supports our TIPNG mission to empower Papua New Guineans to take action against corruption the training of young people and supporting better governance outcomes at the community level.