I AM the eighth child of 10 in a family from Egefa village along the Hiritano Highway in the North Mekeo area of Central Province.
Now I live in Madang Province and want to share my experiences of how the Tropical Gems Rhythm Foundation changed my life.
My father was a subsistence farmer and we spent our time making gardens while my elder brothers would go hunting or fishing.
Because of the remote location of our village, I was unable to complete my education, leaving school after Grade 6 in 1992.
My father and mother passed away when I was young, and it was difficult for me as a young woman growing up in a community where women, according to our Mekeo chieftain custom, have a lower status than men.
In a twist of fate I met a man who was educated and had a good job and I married him in 2002 and moved to the big city of Port Moresby and raised three beautiful children, two boys and a girl. I had always prayed about going to school to further my education but this did not happen.
In 2011, when my husband got a new job with the Ramu Nico mining company we moved to Madang Province.
Even though I had lived in a big city, I remained dissatisfied with my understanding of life as a village girl and still had a desire to learn and maybe one day to get a job.
Around June, 2013, I joined Tropical Gems which had established a school teaching about ‘mind setting’. The theme was ‘Making a Difference and Never Give up (MADANG)’.
I was encouraged because the school accepted anyone, even people without a formal education. I saw this as a golden opportunity and challenge to make a difference in my life.
With the support of my husband and three children, I paid my fees and started attending classes.
My first task was to pick up rubbish every morning around Madang Town before we went to school. I felt this was odd, but, regardless of comments from the public, mainly my friends, I continued to pick up rubbish and do town cleaning.
This was my first lesson: humble yourself, work for others and rise up through the ruins.
Most classes were conducted under the coconut trees at Kalibobo Beach. Regardless of the rain or hot sun, I continued to attend.
The lessons taught were about personal viability; how to make a difference in our lives by thinking positively.
Some of these lessons included the value of time, faith and attitude, the rules of life, God's law of reward, God power to get wealth and studying a book called Cross the Line. These lessons were practical and were real life experiences that had meaning for me.
I started to put these lessons into practice. Although I did not work, I learned how to save a little of the money provided by my husband while I continued to attend daily classes.
Tropical Gems had 10,000 members when the program was launched in 2014. Sadly now it is left with only about 100 faithful members. However, we continue to go to meetings and discussions.
One of the most important impacts in my life was learning public speaking; having confidence and sharing what ‘mind setting’ can do to change lives. Also important has been networking and moving into the rural areas of Madang Province and conducting awareness in villages about healthy living, learning to do more for yourselves and not depending on other people like the government and politicians etc..
One of my greatest achievements was changing my understanding about what life is really about. I went from a simple village girl with a confined outlook to someone looking at the big picture. I learnt how to type on a laptop, access the internet and use Facebook and other social media. Today I have many friends on social media.
I would now like to reach out to as many people as possible who do not know much about what ‘mind setting’ can do and get them to take on the challenges and learn more and make a difference and never give up.