Monitoring Trip: Papua New Guinea

In mid-August, Flora Chong and Craig Tunney visited GDG projects in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea for monitoring. At J739N Gateway Children’s Fund project, we joined with the Australian partner volunteer team. This project is embedded in a settlement area of high need and poverty. The project is effectively delivering community pre-school education and mother’s support. We saw children’s basic health practice like hand washing, and basic nutrition in action, and we heard stories from mothers of the improvement in their home life as a result of the project activities.

The Gateway Children’s fund project has a number of strengths. This work is community based, and includes holistic attention to basic health, water and sanitation (WASH) and pre-school education, which are all needs of the most vulnerable beneficiaries. Local leadership is motivated and strongly led, with resources put into staff training and equipping. The project has educated the donors that many children are helped by this work, not just individual sponsored ones. There is good accountability and reporting back to the Australian partner and GDG. And local sponsorships for school buildings and local partnerships for the program costs have been developed which grows its sustainability.

We also visited J573 Teacher Training project in Waigani, a project aimed at training teachers from the provinces who will improve the quality of education. Currently four teachers from the province of Goroka were in training. The project is exploring ways of delivering the training into the provinces, to avoid the cost and time and disruption of travelling to the coast. Based in a strong school community, this project has plans to become a model school for child-centred education.