Yu Ken Mekim is a story that resonates with many Papua New Guinean women going into business. It gives us a glimpse into the motivations, heartaches and sacrifices women experience when deciding to set up a business. Restaurant owner Rita Kare started a restaurant from selling food on the streets of Goroka. The film takes us through Rita’s and her husband Peter’s journey of fulfilling their dream to establish a successful restaurant in Goroka. Yu ken Mekim highlights Rita’s discipline and determination to make things happen.
Janet Munaup is from Doandok Village in the middle Erap area of Morobe Province. Ms Munaup
graduated with a Bachelor in Education at the University of Goroka in 1999. Her first three years of teaching were in Morobe Province. Then in 2003 she joined the Expressive Arts Department of the University of Goroka as a Drama and Dance tutor. She pursued the love of drama at Flinders University in Adelaide, South Australia; graduating with a Masters in Creative Arts in 2011. While studying, she received the Prime Minister Pacific Australia Award. The award enabled her to work with the South Australian’s Windmill Theatre Company. The three-month work experience was a life-long changing experience. She brought to the Pawa Meri Project her directing and acting skills. Ms Munaup is passionate about pursuing career in the arts. She believes that challenges build up a person.
There are three intentions that I am exploring in Rita Karre’s story: to inspire, to challenge, and to acknowledge that gender equity and equality begins at home. Mrs Karre’s story is inspirational. The Steak House Mobile Catering Service started as an informal business of ice-block, Maggie noodles, flower-balls, chicken and etcetera. It was from these sales that she saved up to purchase the current land on which the business was established. Many Papua New Guineans will identify themselves with this story. Moreover, most urban and per urban settlers earn their daily living through informal business. The Steak House story will challenge everyone to do something worthwhile. Furthermore Mr. Karre’s appearance is a challenge to the male dominated society. The shared responsibility and the humbled gesture Mr. Karre performed in allowing Mrs. Karre to take ownership of the Mobile Catering Service prompt me to tell this story.