Exciting news……Work has begun on the Mother’s Waiting House in PNG…..
Mahatma Ghandi said “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” The Clarendon Papua New Guinea Project is a humanitarian initiative that is about helping our closest neighbour and this being the 6th year, the project is well established as a service opportunity within the BCC community.
18 excited students, 3 teachers and 3 doctors this year are getting ready to take off to Milne Bay Province in remote Papua New Guinea with the aim of supplying medicines, medical aid and educational supplies to the tiny hospital and schools in this rugged & beautiful remote area. Students live the life of PNG villagers, while each day the doctors and teachers travel to villages and conduct medical clinics for the villagers, assisted by students. With only 1 doctor to every 17-20, 000 people in PNG, our doctors are the only doctors many of the villagers see for the whole year, so their contribution to the PNG people is massive.
Our very exciting major project for this year is the construction of a Mother’s Waiting House within the grounds of the tiny health centre at a little village called Dogura. In an effort to reduce shocking maternal mortality rates where 1 in 17 mothers who give birth alone in their villages die as they do not have the medical care and assistance they require. Poverty, distance, family commitments are all reasons for mother’s giving birth alone. The Mother’s Waiting House will allow those mothers who would normally have their babies without medical assistance at home in their village, to make the trek in to the health centre with their families before they are due to give birth & ‘wait’ in the waiting house close to medical help should they need it when the big day arrives.
The great news is that work on the Waiting House has begun! Materials have been sourced and workers are enthusiastically constructing the building using logs that have been ‘floated’ downstream from a little inland village called Pova about 1½ hours walk from the coast. The Waiting House, should be well underway when we visit in 3 weeks
This is a significant project and requires a firm commitment from our community to build and provide ongoing support for the future. Clarendon students have been working very hard to raise the necessary funds. They have been selling home baked goods, sausages and drinks, raffle tickets (available at the Sturt St front office – stacks of amazing prizes), running dodge ball competitions amongst many other creative fund raising events.
The party depart for PNG on the last Friday of this term.