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SWIRE Shipping is supporting a creative arts program at a juvenile rehabilitation and development centre in Fiji.

The program was developed by Inspire Pacific, a non-government organisation whose vision is to empower young Pacific Islanders to live to their fullest potential. Swire Shipping said it has donated around US$6700 to the initiative.

Alex Pattison, country manager for Fiji, said Swire Shipping hopes to help youth “discard negative patterns and behaviours, discover their passions and what they are capable of, as well as how they can contribute meaningfully to society with their talent and skills”.

“It’s great to know that Inspire Pacific can help to connect these individuals, after they have left the centre, to organisations and opportunities subsequently,” he said.

“We believe a bright future will await each and every one of them. We’d also be monitoring the progress made by participants after they leave the centre to assess the program’s efficacy.

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“We hope they will return later to share their success stories, their experiences and how the program has assisted them in re-integrating with society.”

The opening ceremony of the interactive arts and leadership programs at the Fiji Juvenile Rehabilitation and Development Centre was held on 17 March this year.

Participants in the creative arts program will have the opportunity to learn skills such as music, painting, cooking, as well as listening and critical thinking.

“Together with members of our team, we will be connecting with these youth to share our own life experiences, to learn more about their hopes and dreams, and to find out how we can help them as best as we can,” he said.

Several times a year, participants will be able to showcase their talents to an audience, including their own family members.

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