This was made known by Sylvester O’Oru – Community Learning, Department for Community Development and Religion, during the launching of the 22nd National Literacy week in Tapini, Goilala District.
In a statement, O’Oru said the department has vested interest in developing communities to reach their full potential and this cannot be achieved through an illiterate population.
He said the Department is embarking on few focus areas which are; Community learning, concern with learning and development of every community in PNG; Community environment, which looks after building sustainable communities co-existing in harmony with the environment around us; Community economics which concerns with managing people’s income and livelihood; and community governance where communities are empowered to manage their own affairs with the resources available to them.
“Fundamental to any other development agenda is people’s ability to read and write. And that’s where Literacy stands as the foundation for learning and development in the country,” O’Oru said.
He further stated that schools currently cater for the formal system of education.
“However, there is greater demand for formal learning and adult education for those who have not had the benefit of passing through the formal education and this remains one of the main challenges for the Department.”
He said it is the Department’s vision to embark on the process of promoting literacy for the category of any development so that no one gets left behind, as Literacy Is for Everyone (LIFE).
“The mechanism which will be utilised by the Department will be the District Community Learning and Development Centres where training for learning and capacity building programs shall eventuate.”
He added that in order to deliver and achieve this vision, the Department is working closely with the National Literacy & Awareness Secretariat in terms of planning to enable the programs of what is required to deliver to the communities in the country.
He welcomes any other development partners that share similar visions.