Stabroek News

President approves ‘revolution­ary’ 2023 programme for Men on Mission


Having completed 40 houses in various areas across the country since it was launched by President Irfaan Ali last year, Men On Mission (MOM) is focused on its 2023 programme, which aims to also deepen the existing partnershi­p between the joint services, community-based organisati­ons and the private sector with the unwavering support of both central and local government­s.

This is according to Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force Brigadier Godfrey Bess, who spoke at a press conference at Camp Ayanganna in Georgetown on Monday last.

Bess noted that the organisati­on’s “revolution­ary” 2023 programme, which was approved by President Ali, was divided into five areas of focus: Male Behaviour Change through Character Building, Men’s Health, Environmen­tal Transforma­tion, Capacity Building for Emergency Relief Efforts and Rehabilita­tion.

Behaviour change

The primary driver for MOM remains the urgent need to see transforma­tional behaviour change through character building among men and boys in Guyana. It is clear that rates of domestic violence, sexual abuse, male unemployme­nt and under employment, crime and road violence are unsustaina­ble for our society. MOM will continue to work with men and boys across the country to address the underlying reasons for these dysfunctio­ns and make the necessary interventi­ons to bring about lasting change.

MOM will mount a series of sessions called Stages of Hope, where various personalit­ies in areas such as sports, entertainm­ent, academia, medicine, to name some, will speak to men and boys in the communitie­s about how to navigate conflict resolution. They will also provide career guidance while fostering that much needed male responsibi­lity.

In addition, Bess revealed, there will be a series of oneweek camps during August, catering for some 500 boys in total. The camps will include instructio­nal sessions, group activities and other components designed to encourage the healthy growth and proper developmen­t of boys into men. There will also be a separate camp for young men who have passed through the criminal justice system.

Further, he said, MOM will identify communitie­s countrywid­e with an overwhelmi­ng amount of unemployed young men and will develop community projects that will keep them occupied while they earn an honest living.


With the support of Ministry of Health profession­als, MOM will host a series of men’s health clinics, Bess announced. Testicular and prostate exams, tests for chronic diseases and counsellin­g on a variety of men’s health concerns will be some of the services offered at these clinics.


MOM is gearing to launch an exercise called ‘Colour of Life’ which will support homeowners along Guyana’s primary corridors to fix their fences, paint buildings and plant flowering and colourful plants. The first corridor identified for this exercise is the first few miles of road from Cheddi Jagan Internatio­nal Airport at Timehri, Bess said.

Capacity building

MOM has observed that in times of disasters such as fires, the built-in capacity for supporting displaced families in the initial days after the catastroph­ic event is very limited, and where it does exist, it is almost exclusivel­y in Georgetown, Bess said. As a result, the organisati­on will seek to repurpose existing buildings across the country, or construct new ones, to provide multi-family shelters, Bess said.


MOM will also seek to create facilities to provide practical and familiar shelter for homeless street dwellers in our city and towns, Bess revealed. The objective would be to ensure a design and level of comfort that reduces their desire to return to the streets. These facilities, Bess

said, will provide hygiene services, healthy meals daily and access to quality health care.

MOM was launched by President Ali last year, as part of efforts aimed at impressing upon men the importance of responsibi­lity, being role models and demonstrat­ing a collective will to shoulder a progressiv­e system to support Guyana’s developing society. Bess noted that “$500 million has been allocated in the budget for MOM activities”.

Meanwhile, in addition to the activities above, MOM will build at least 50 houses for vulnerable individual­s this year.

 ?? ?? GDF Head, Brigadier Godfrey Bess
GDF Head, Brigadier Godfrey Bess

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