Region Five men must fight against toxic masculinity – Minister Edghill

Says exhibit “strength under control” at MOM launch  

In keeping with the theme of this year’s international Men’s Day, the Men on Mission initiative was on Saturday afternoon launched in Region 5.

Public Works Minister, Bishop Juan Edghilll attended the regional launch at the Fort Wellington Regional Democratic Council Compound.

“Men on Mission” is an initiative that was coined by His Excellency, President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali as part of his 1000-Men initiative. It is geared towards fostering sustainable partnerships among Guyanese men to address the challenges faced by men and boys.

Public Works Minister, Bishop Juan Edghill, alongside members of the joint services

The initiative also serves as a platform to combat violence against women.

In delivering a charge to the men on behalf of President Ali, Minister Edghill expressed that it is high time that Guyanese men take an active approach to becoming being good men and leaders in society.

He urged them to exercise “strength” in control.

“In order for us to be good men, we must first acknowledge that the examples we followed in the past are not necessarily to be followed in the future,” he said.

Public Works Minister, Bishop Juan Edghill

Moreover, Minister Edghill stressed the importance of providing guidance and affection to young boys to eradicate toxic masculinity. 

“Any man who is aggressive in the street, once he is properly mentored, he can be a success in society, because his energy is driven in the right direction. Every bully in the schoolyard should be seen as a leader that just needs to bring his strength under control,” the public works minister declared.

Further, Minister Edghill said, “The problem is that we have a society that demands us to be how nobody has taught us how to be. We have to change that equation by developing a society where it is okay for men to cry, and express themselves.”

Men of Region 5 came out in their numbers for the regional launch of “Men on Mission”

Meanwhile, Regional Chairman, Vickchand Ramphal, encouraged the men in attendance to adopt healthy lifestyle practices and stressed that forming linkages between each other is a proven way of ensuring development for all.

He also lamented the toxic masculinity that plagues Guyanese men, preventing them from seeking the help they need, and assured them that the initiative provides a safe space for them to seek guidance and counselling, as well as economic advancement.

The minister also took the opportunity to applaud the assiduous work of women, noting that the onus is now on the men to balance the scales. 

Further, Minister Edghill noted that a healthy masculine attitude is cultivated in the home, and appealed to the men to become stellar fathers, brothers, husbands and sons. 

Region Five Regional Executive Officer, Genevieve Blackman, and other representatives of the joint services were also in attendance at the launch ceremony. The theme for International Men’s Day 2022 is ‘Helping Men and Boys’.