Situated on the Fly River near the border with Indonesia, Kiunga has become a significant port for the growing mining and liquid nitrogen gas industries. This has led to a rapidly expanding population – from 7,000 in 2002 to as much as 30,000 today. In turn, this has led to the problems of crime and unemployment. There’s also a significant West Papuan refugee population.
We help fund a program that trains people working in health centres and aid posts in the North Fly region. Training is conducted at 8 health centres and more than 20 aid posts and covers five modules, namely: volunteerism, learning about health, self-help care, healthy children and healthy mothers. Many of our trainees go on to become birth attendants and travel to remote regions assisting women in labour. This has helped to significantly reduce maternal and infant mortality rates.
We run programs providing training for women, both at The Home of Hope in Kiunga and in outreach areas. These include indoor and outdoor cooking, baking, sewing, budgeting and marketing. The Home of Hope also has a child care centre where children learn motor skills and basic health and hygiene.
This eaglewood plantation is being developed as a sustainable resource designed to help fund projects in the Diocese of Kiunga. Eaglewood (also known as Agarwood) is highly prized for its perfume and incense. PNG is one of the last areas in the world where it grows naturally.
This program runs workshops in the villages in Northern Fly to minimise violence in families and communities. Sadly PNG has some of the highest rates of domestic violence in the world.
Students from the Western Province who reach Grade 12 and obtain a place for further education (for teaching, nursing, university or technical college) face many challenges. There are no tertiary institutions in the province and so they must travel by plane to access further education. This adds even more to the costs of realising their dreams. The area is in dire need of skilled young people to staff schools and health centres and provide role models for the next generation. We’re helping sponsor students so they can complete their education.
St Gabriels Technical College
In 2014 donor contributions supported the building of two new dormitories for boys and girls, with ablution blocks. Two Toyota Coaster Buses were delivered successfully in 2016 to provide transport for students to get to school and home again safely each day.
Lower Bamu education projects
In 2017 three villages in the Lower Bamu region of the Western Province received teacher housing and new classrooms. All needed to be built with foundations submerged in swampy conditions. Further similar projects are planned for this very isolated and water logged region.