Donald had made an interesting posting on his Facebook page recently and I asked him if I could include this as a guest blog on Sharing Culture. Donald agreed, so here is his blog along with a few comments from the facebook page.
‘In 2013, a baseline survey was carried out for the CISS Project - World Vision Port Moresby Branch. The survey team penetrated some of the most notorious settlements in Port Moresby.
From this baseline survey, the survey team learnt that most child sexual assault cases were never reported to the Police, welfare or other relevant authorities. A few cases were reported to the Police, but were referred back to the community to resolve these issues in a customary way (Bel-Kol or compensation to the victim and her family members/relatives).
But what we all need to understand is the following: the traumatic experiences that children face regenerates themselves and are acted out in different forms of violent behavior as children grow older.
That’s why we see an increase in the number of kids on the street, homeless kids, increase levels of child prostitution, alcohol abuse by teenagers, teenage pregnancy, underage smoking, underage drug consumption, street fights, schools fights, etc…
By understanding how trauma affects or alters the neurobiological development of our children’s brains, then we can understand, and try to address, the ongoing incidences and high levels of violence against women, youths, men and children within our families and communities.’
Fazilah Bazari: So true Donald. You have found the root cause! Now the solution?
Donald Moi: The only solution I think is to educate people on the impact of trauma resulting from any form of violence perpetrated against women, children, including men and youths. If people understand how trauma becomes inter-generational or how it alters/affects the neurobiological development of the brain, then we can get people to start thinking about what they are doing to themselves, their families and communities.
Donald Moi: I have conducted a few workshops. The first question people would be asking is "WHAT IS TRAUMA? I am of the opinion now that our people have to know what trauma is and what are the impacts or effects of trauma and so on.’
Check out these books by Bessel van der Kolk and Judy Atkinson if you want to learn more abut trauma and intergenerational trauma, respectively.
Donald Moi, a BA in Social Work at the University of Papua New Guinea, has been writing a book with Judy and Carlie Atkinson on violence trauma healing in his country, helping We Al-Li to accredit courses with the National Training Council, and has been instrumental in the setting up of the PNG Healing Foundation.