Solomon Island: One Day Conference

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by: UPF Solomon Islands, Peter Chaniel Tome

Universal Peace Federation Solomon Islands recently hosted a 1 day conference on the 10th of October 2016 with the Provincial government of Guadalcanal. Guadalcanal is the host province of Honiara the capital city of Solomon Islands. Guadalcanal Province is also the biggest in terms of land mass and natural resources.

The Universal Peace Federation Regional Director and his Secretary General attended this conference to give presentations on UPF and its work, the New Village movement as an Ideal model for rural development in Oceania countries and an introduction of the Character Education Syllabus.

The theme of this conference is “New Village Movement- A Sustainable Development Model”. Under this UPF and its work around the world and Oceania could be introduced as well as the IEF Character education syllabus.

Purpose

The main purpose of this conference is to introduce the “New Village Movement as a Sustainable development model for Solomon Islands as well as introducing Character Education as mindset training for the people

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Objectives

  1. Introducing New Village Movement to the Province of Guadalcanal. In the oceania region rural development is one of the main issues faced by the government and its people. There is a great dependency on foreign aid and misuse of government funds. Hundreds of funded projects could not be completed and this has also become a problem for aid donors as well. UPF Solomon Islands therefore wishes to give light to the people through the New Village Movement as a model where they could learn and adapt to its principles.
  2. Secondly through the New Village Movement the Character Education Syllabus could also be introduced in a positive environment where people have been enlightened to change.
  3. Thirdly through this programme we could also be able to give Universal Peace Federation a positive image in its networking both in the government and religious level in the Solomon Islands.
  4. Fourthly once a breakthrough is made with the Provincial government of Guadalcanal the work of UPF is to be expanded to other parts of the country and can be accepted by National Leaders.

Participation

A total of 52 guests participated in this conference. That includes the Provincial Premier and his 21 Assembly members with all the heads of departments of the provincial administration. The Chief Training Officer from the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock also attended to the conference. He was also invited to give a special remark as a witness to the success of New Village Movement in Korea. Five representatives from the Guadalcanal Council of Women Network were also invited and attended as well as 3 participants from the private sector.

Conference Facilitators

The conference was organized by UPF Solomon Islands. Rev Richard Yoo Regional Director and Secretary General of UPF Oceania were invited to give the presentations on New Village Movement and UPF and Character education respectively.

Rev Yoo is also the National Leader of Vanuatu and he also has introduced the movement there in the Tana Province.

Rev Greg Stone who is also the President of FFWPU Australia give presentations of UPF and its work around the world and also introduces the character education syllabus.

 

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Conference Analysis

All the presentations delivered by our two top regional leaders were so inspiring that most of the participants could be seen focusing on the presenters all throughout the presentations. The concept of New Village Movement was as interesting to most of the participants as they could also recall their childhood days where the culture of the province is intact and that it is through the spirits of the movement that life evolves in the rural villages. This was said to be replaced by colonial influence on the people.

After Rev Yoo’s presentation on New Village Movement a representative from the Ministry of Agriculture under the National Government was also invited to give a special remark on his experience in Korea with the New Village Movement. He also informs the conference that his office will support the development of the NVM in Solomon Islands and he was so happy to be invited to the conference.

This is followed by the appointment of the Premier as the chairperson and his Permanent Secretary as vice chairperson to the New Village Movement programme in Guadalcanal. This conference though hosted on a Provincial Level has a great impact as there were inquiries coming from other provinces and national leaders following a two page publication in one of the Solomon Islands local newspapers.

Bad habitual behavior was also a problem now in rural Guadalcanal. Alcoholism and addiction to marijuana is a growing problem in the island. Rev Greg Stone’s presentation on the need to educate for character really inspired the minister for education and his chief education officer that after the conference they made appointments immediately with UPF Solomon Islands Director as an urgent matter. The Character education programme therefore has a green light for great breakthrough in the near future.

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Participants Responses

  • “It has been a long search by my government to identify a workable model for rural development that can be easily adapted by the people. The conference today has shown us the light and I hope that the NVM can be introduced to our rural people for further improvement and development of their lives” (Hon. Premier Anthony Veke)
  • “The character Education Syllabus as presented by UPF is the only well Developed character education Program around…We cannot Look anywhere else. This is the only Program we can adapt to at Least reduce the rising social problems In our schools and society today” (Hon. Premier Anthony Veke).
  • Character education has been taught in our schools in the older days. This conference reminds us of the importance of reviving such syllabus back into our education curriculum. A lot of social problems experienced now in the village are started by primary and high school dropouts. I hope this programme can address this youth problem….” (Hon. Minister for Women and Youth)
  • UPF you have done a great work I don’t know why our leaders who have attended your ILC
  • haven’t inform us of your great work upon their return…. I commend you for your great work for peace. (Permanent Secretary Mr. Timothy Ngele)
  • “My government department will definitely look into creating partnership with your organization. I this it is right time now to introduce such an education curricular in the Guadalcanal education programs before it’s too late” (Min. for Education).
  • Thank you so much UPF Organizers. Now I have a clear vision on how to work with my village people. The presentations are so inspiring and informative. (Guadalcanal women leader)

Recommendations

These recommendations are basically suggested by the Guadalcanal Provincial participants as they wish to see the realization of the New Village Movement and character education activities working in their province.

  1. The chief education officer recommends that there needs to be a workshop to educate teachers first before they could introduce the syllabus to the children.
  2. A working committee to be developed within the Ministry and UPF to formalize activities to implement the New Village Movement Training in selected villages.
  3. UPF to work in Partnership with the Province of Guadalcanal to give awareness and training in the future.

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Conclusion

This conference is one of the first national conferences hosted by UPF in the past three years. Through this conference we could also see that the concepts presented by UPF is also quiet unique. People have been always thinking of individualism however through the presentations UPF has strong call for people to work in cooperation and for the benefit of all people. This is truly in line with True Parents Principle of “Living for the sake of others”.

UPF Solomon Islands once again wishes to thank our two Regional Leaders Rev. Yoo and Rev. Greg Stone for your great support and contribution towards the success of the conference in the Solomon Islands.

We hope that this conference will be our stepping stone to promote the work of our Heavenly parents and True Parents throughout the country. Once the country and its people recognize the benefits of our work, our True Parents can also be easily recognized.

Finally I would also like to thank our headquarters for the funds that could assist us in facilitating this conference. Without your precious support nothing could be done.