Islands culture fuels success
Marshall Islands shows the way
By Giff Johnson
USP weavers group...The University of the South Pacific Campus in Majuro built a weavers house where expert weavers teach younger trainees to make the “jaki ed” finely woven mats that were a signature part of the culture of the Marshall Islands-- Karen Earnshaw
What is remarkable in modern urban planning in the Pacific islands—everything from education and health to economic development—is the lack of appreciation for cultural skills and pride as key foundational building blocks for success.
In most urban areas, thousands of youth have dropped out of school and sit idly, with little to do and little hope of a future. Many dropped out because they had neither the modern academic skills to make it, nor the cultural foundation to help them persevere through difficult times. Yet, as community-based programs in the Marshall Islands are demonstrating, these same youth are ripe for cultural learning and life skills development.
It is the islands’ culture that, ultimately, fuels their ability to succeed. “We’re changing the kids’ attitudes towards life,” said Waan Aelon in Majel (Canoes of the Marshall Islands) Director, Alson Kelen, who has managed the outrigger canoe building program since the late 1990s.
“It’s too free (in the urban center) nowadays, there is no control over when they get up or what they do. A lot of kids and adults don’t know what they are going to do next. Many just play ukulele all day or talk story. It’s the same every day.”
...or view more articles related to these topics:
...or try these related articles:
- Thu 24 Jul - Australia: Bill Clinton: Aids-free generation within reach if we boost HIV treatment
- Thu 24 Jul - Papua New Guinea: PNG, Europe eye more trade
- Thu 24 Jul - Fiji: New Fiji Link ATR 42-600 arriving soon
- Thu 24 Jul - Samoa: Frozen Samoan taro soon to be on the overseas market
- Thu 24 Jul - Fiji: Fijian soldiers caught in crossfire
- Thu 24 Jul - Papua New Guinea: Challenge on PNG grace period law set for August
- Thu 24 Jul - Scotland: Fijian President hold talks with UK Minister for Commonwealth
- Thu 24 Jul - Samoa: Plane goes down near American Samoa
- Thu 24 Jul - Vanuatu: Vanua'aku Pati considers mergers Updated at
- Thu 24 Jul - Fiji: Russian military delegation in Fiji