The Ministry of National Security, as part of its crime prevention and community safety initiative, yesterday (Aug. 10) launched the Real Man Things ‘Pon Di Corner’ programme, which will target vulnerable males in inner-city communities.
Utilising the popular ‘Real Man Things’ radio show as well as interactive sessions and workshops on inner-city streets, the aim is to motivate and empower young men and turn them away from a life of crime.
The programme is a public/private sector partnership spearheaded by the Citizens Security and Justice Programme (CSJP) in alliance with Churches Co-operative Credit Union (CCCU), and Communications and Business Solutions Limited.
Chief Executive Officer of Churches Co-operative Credit Union (CCCU), Basil Naar (left), signs the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the Real Man Things ‘Pon Di Corner’ programme, while Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security, Diane McIntosh and host of ‘Real Man Thing’ radio show Kevin Wallen, look on. The programme, launched yesterday (Aug. 10) at the Fletcher’s Land Community Centre in Kingston, is being spearheaded by the Citizens Security and Justice Programme (CSJP) in collaboration with the CCCU and Communications and Business Solutions Limited, and will target males in inner city communities.
Speaking at the launch held at the Fletcher’s Land Community Centre, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Diane McIntosh, said that the objective of the initiative is to “spark a rebirth of the soul” and “give our men, who are in the most vulnerable categories, a new lease on life”.
She argued that in seeking to lift up girls and women, the development of boys and men has been compromised. “Just as we are assiduous to avoid unfair treatment of women and minorities, we should do the same for boys and men – in school curricula, in television and movie programming, college admissions and programming, hiring, promotion, workplace culture, and health research funding and outreach,” Ms. McIntosh stated.
She congratulated the participants for taking that step forward and expressed confidence that the avenues that are being opened through the Real Man initiative would lead to new ways to “re-establish the manhood that has been lost”.
“As we celebrate Emancipation and Independence, let us move together in one accord to play our part to emancipate the men in our society, who feel that they are not being made independent by circumstances,” she added.
Chief Executive Officer of Churches Co-operative Credit Union (CCCU), Basil Naar (right), is in discussion with Programme Manager for the Citizens Security and Justice Programme (CSJP), Simeon Robinson (left) and host of the ‘Real Man Thing’ radio programme, Kevin Wallen, at the launch of the Real Man Things ‘Pon Di Corner’ programme yesterday (Aug.10) at the Fletcher’s Land Community Centre in Kingston. The programme, which gets underway at the end of this month, will target males in inner city communities.
Real Man Things, a weekly one-hour series broadcast on Power 106 FM on Sundays at 9:00 p.m. targets men, with themes selected to address irresponsible and dysfunctional behaviour and bring about positive changes. The programme has been on air for almost a year.
Under the Real Man Things ‘Pon Di Corner’ initiative, a group of reformed young men, who were once idle on street corners, or involved in gangs and crime, will share their stories of change on the radio show, and will also have the opportunity to host the programme.
“These ‘Men with a Message’ will be trained and deployed as role models to corners, schools, clubs and sports teams to communicate the message of change to other young men contemplating a life of crime, who are vulnerable to recruitment, or who are living a life of crime,” informed CSJP Programme Manager, Simeon Robinson.
“CSJP believes that the market segment and focus of the Real Man Things radio programme provides an excellent opportunity to reach unattached males – a group that has proven extremely hard to read,” he noted.
Host of Real Man Things and Motivational Speaker and Life Coach, Kevin Wallen, lauded the initiative, stressing that to reach inner-city youth and turn them away from a life of crime, it is critical to provide credible examples, by using others, who have gone down the wrong path but have found a way to redeem and restore themselves.
“It is not just about us coming down here and telling you a bunch of things.it’s about what you need to do to balance out your thing. It is not us who are going to make this programme work – it’s you,” he said.
Meanwhile, Chief Executive Officer of Churches Co-operative Credit Union, Basil Naar, said that public/private sector partnerships are needed to comprehensively tackle the country’s crime problem.
He expressed the hope that the programme will also provide the opportunity for males in inner-city communities to learn fiscal responsibility and attain financial independence “by allowing us to provide resource persons and materials for workshops crafted chiefly for individuals operating small and medium-sized businesses and for prospective business owners in CSJP communities.”
Real Man Things ‘Pon Di Corner’ begins airing at the end of this month.