|Thursday, 24 January 2002|
by Nadira Gunatilleke
The first step towards a total eradication of violence and terrorism should be through equipping children with wisdom. The crime rate has increased by 300 percent. It indicates that the existing anti crime mechanisms are grossly inadequate, Social Welfare Minister Ravindra Samaraweera said at the inauguration of a workshop for mentors of Katawatta and Watawana villages in the Mahiyangane and Meegahakiula Divisional Secretariat divisions. The workshop is being conducted under the Promotion of Wisdom program.
Minister Samaraweera said that the new Government headed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has taken a firm decision to wipe out corruption and violence completely, through ensuring that the correct mechanisms are in place.
We have decided to implement special programs such as "Promotion of Wisdom" under the Government's 100 Days Program in order to ease the present social problems prevailing in the country. "Promotion of Wisdom" introduced by the Social Welfare Ministry has already achieved significant results in the area of child guidance, he said. Children are examined by mentors at "Cultural Clinics" to assess their behavioral problems.
Social Welfare Ministry Secretary Mrs.Viji Jegarasasingam said that the number of persons victimized by social problems seeking assistance of the Social Welfare Ministry increases daily. Motherhood has reduced to such levels that women are prepared to part with their infants in exchange for dollars. The drastic consequences of the phenomenon are child abuse, more women taking to the streets and violence against women and children and suicide.
"Promotion of Wisdom" program has yielded outcomes even beyond expectations in transforming child behaviour within a short period. It was proving a guaranteed method of preventing violence, she said.
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