Today, on World Water Day, we acknowledge the ongoing partnership we have with Mater Health Services in North QLD who enable us to deliver various village health activities to remote areas in the Western Province of Kiunga in Papua New Guinea.
Water is something we take forgranted in Australia, but in PNG access to potable water is not always possible. Our Mercy Works team in Kiunga, headed by our project coordinator there, Stephen Dude, face the challenge daily to deliver water services to remote areas. During the wet season villages pack up and move to higher ground temporarily into the mountainous areas as the Fly River rises.
So transporting water tanks to these areas can prove challenging! As Stephen says, “in Kiunga we are always flexible! We have a Plan A, a Plan B and a Plan C!”
Stephen and some of our Sisters of Mercy, including Sr Rachael and Sr Merilyn, delivered water tanks and food as part of our Covid Emergency Relief in December in any way they could. Sometimes on foot, sometimes with a team of trucks, sometimes via canoe, which can take hours up stream, sometimes by boat in pairs and in some instances by air via helicopter was the only way. It can take 2 days for travel alone.
Our mission to build capacity and self reliance and deliver various Village Health activities for the most vulnerable in Kiunga is ONLY made possible with such generosity as that of Mater Health Services in QLD.