Samoans encouraged to lift taboos

A humanitarian group in Samoa is encouraging families to communicate openly about issues considered to be taboo.

Samoa has had a number of incidents this year involving babies abandoned at birth or mothers committing infanticide.

The director of the Seventh Day Adventist Development and Relief Agency Su'a Julia Wallwork said with the rise in sexual violence and abuse within communities, more support was needed.

"Sometimes it's the social pressures that makes these young girls do these things," said Su'a Wallwork.

"They don't think of the long term, they just think of the shame and the anger they are going to see in their families and in society and that's what puts pressure on them to do these things."

Su'a Wallwork also said digital devices could be distracting children from communicating openly and directly with parents.