The inaugural Ahi Festival was held at the Sir Ignatius Kilage Stadium in Lae from Monday, Dec 13, to Friday, Dec 17, 2010.
The Ahi Festival – with the theme Promoting Education Through Sports and Culture - was aimed at raising funds for the establishment of an Ahi resource centre, an education facility which will have a library, computer laboratory and conference and workshop facilities.
“The Ahi Festival is an initiative of Riback Stevedores Ltd and has the full support of the Ahi community,” explains Riback general manager Peter Boyd.
“The company believes that the effects of the social problems facing the Ahi community can be wide-ranging in size anywhere from local effects on a family or a village to the Lae community and even the entire society.
“The company therefore wants to do its part in helping the Ahi community to help themselves to take a lead now in working towards addressing some of their social problems.
“We hope other members and stakeholders of the Lae community can also join in and help the people of Ahi in their endeavours to create an educated and orderly community that can co-exist peacefully with others in the wider Lae community.”
Boyd said the social problems of the Ahi community could be addressed only if the community could unite and work together in search of solutions with the support of strategic partners.
“The Ahi Festival can be a powerful tool to unite the Ahi community,” he added.
“It can also create awareness of the social issues and promote a team approach with key stakeholders to address the socials problems with the view to minimise its crippling effects on the people of Ahi – the current generation and also the future generation.”
Some of the main objectives of the Ahi Festival include:
• Promoting community unity;
• Promoting and preserving Ahi culture;
• Creating awareness on social Issues and assistance available; and
• Showcase local talents in culture, sports, music and business.
All that- and more - was achieved that memorable week.