Conference focuses on youth

The Salvation Army’s Amplify Youth Conference was held at the Taumeasina Island Resort last week where participating youth witnessed how creative arts could be used to engage, teach and inspire young people.

The conference is part of the Salvation Army’s work in communities in Samoa in a bid to reach out to young people.

Lt Colonel Rod Carey and his wife Pastor Jenny – who lead the Salvation Army together with their pastors, youth leaders, addictions services clinician and their team – were all part of the conference. 

According to a representative of Apelu Sports, Atitoafaiga Tau, sports is also a vehicle for change hence their involvement.

The guest speakers at the conference included representatives of Apelu Sports as well as lecturers from the National University of Samoa. 

Ms Tau said that part of their program is sports for development and therefore they presented on why sports involvement is beneficial for the youth. 

"Engaging with the youth, sharing knowledge on how they can make positive changes for themselves,” Ms Tau said. “This has a flow-on effect for not only themselves but also their families and communities.”

"There was much discussion on the challenges faced playing sport as a young person, as a young woman, as a mother and how those challenges were addressed.

"Challenges such as playing male-dominated sports, balancing commitments at home, at work, with families and church duties. 

"Experience shared of how opportunities are also available and created through sport – not only pathways for further sporting careers – but careers in different areas such as environment, hearing technician, financier to travel, to create and expand the network."

Apelu Sports delivers programs in areas of leadership, gender and sports. Their partnership with organisations like the Salvation Army will reach a wider range of young people and also contributes to the efforts of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

"It will help to reach the different youth groups to guide, to share and to inspire through AS programs,”  Ms Tau added. “It will also help to be on the pathway of working towards SDGs #3 Good Health and wellbeing, #4Quality Education and #5 Gender Equality.”

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