Complex social problems at the heart of some of Port Moresby settlements have led to a bold initiative creating local heroes with youths in the community.
And sport plays an important role in the community as a positive vehicle promoting physical activities amongst the youth, to keep them away from involving themselves in illegal activities in the communities that they live in.
The Kaukana Football Club in the Kaugere community is undertaking an important initiative focus on these areas that is creating ripples in the community.
The man behind this initiative is Michael Tobias a former Guria FC player in the PMSA competition who called Kaugere his home for more than a decade now.
During the long Easter weekend Tobias brought the youths of Kaugere both men and women to participate in the three-day 2018 PMSA Easter Challenge.
The men’s team fared well in the challenge from their pool but was eliminated due to goal difference. Their women’s team made it through to the semi-final and lost to University.
Tobias said Kaugere settlement is a hub of criminal activities and carries a fearsome reputation.
The community is made up of people from different backgrounds, ethnic groups, religious, cultural and economic backgrounds.
However with this mind he is using soccer as a weapon in the fight for a better future for the youths in Kaugere.
“There were many obstacles and many challenges that I had,” he says
“There are many negative sayings about the Kaugere community, but we are trying to educate the youths to turn away from the negative aspects.”
The glory might seem a long way from the dusty playgrounds of Kaugere where the devoted Kaukana Football Club use football to forge a fairer future for the Kaugere community. But for these youths football has made a big impact in their lives and they have become role models back in their community.
The Kaukana Football Club is now looking forward when the PMSA season proper kicks off later this month but Tobias hope they have impressed PMSA during the Easter Challenge for a spot in the season proper.