PCN: Empower informal settlers

THE People’s Community Network (PCN) has urged people not to feel pity for people living in informal settlement areas, but empower and believe in their ability to change the way they live.

PCN national director Semiti Qalowasa said many people who lived in these settlements had been living there for years and had the mentality they would never be able to move out from the squatters.

“PCN is all about empowering our community and our people,” Mr Qalowasa said.

“We empower them to stop depending on others and be independent themselves.

“They need to move away from the idea of being too dependent on others for assistance, they need to find their own motivational strength from within and come forward, showing the world that they have the abilities to encounter many things they can do themselves.”

Mr Qalowasa said many people had the idea of reaching out to people living in informal settlements with assistance because of the way they lived.

“If we do care for them then we need to empower them to move away from their own situation, we don’t need to do it for them, we need to allow them do it themselves,” he said.

“What we do is that we let people go through capacity building and socioeconomic empowerment and leadership programs, this is done for them to prove to us that they were willing to commit to change.

“Many people also thought that PCN was all about housing, as a matter of fact, it’s not.

“We also have other projects like agriculture, education, financial literacy and socioeconomic and empowerment programs.

“What we do is that we help identify people’s strength and motivate them through our work that best suit them under our projects.

“This way, it somehow encourages people too to reach out and better themselves,” he said.

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