Posts Categorized: Atolls

New research investigates service delivery to the atolls

By Timothy Poroda

The need for services delivery to the Atolls communities of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville is one area where many tertiary students, such as those at Divine University, see as their potential site for research.

There are many factors that are contributing to the impediment of services to the area, including its remoteness.

As an undergraduate researcher I was triggered by the service delivery issue in the Atolls as the basis to conduct my final year research paper because of the lack of transport or effective transport system into the area.

The research site of my study is to be conducted on one of the islands but due to some limitations the research data collection will be conducted in Buka urban area where most of the Tasman Islanders now live.

The research will have two-way response, which means there are two samples or study populations, and will be getting information from Tasman Islanders and government departments or offices.

I hope to get better feedback from the two samples as trial interview was conducted early this year which many of the participants both from each sampling frames responded positively to the questions asked.

Furthermore, I will mainly look at the education and health sector which is my prime purpose to conduct the research there on how the dissemination of the services are provided to these respective sectors by the authority responsible.

The research a requirement to complete my undergraduate studies and will be presented at the end of second semester this year to contribute to the existing literature of knowledge.

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Atolls face shortage of food supplies

By Timothy Poroda


The last shipment of food supplies to the Atoll District of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville was made in early January and the food which was delivered that month is now decreasing to an unsteady ration.

The Atolls are deeply relying on the Autonomous Bougainville Government for relief supplies to the island due to climate change many of the islands are now facing the consequences of this global issue. They the growth of food has been unsustainable for some years.

Recently, the continuous rain has caused some of the islands to experienced shortage of food to feed their family and community. An elderly islander as according to the daily newspaper he said their only source of food, a variety of taro, is too being destroyed which is in their local language they called it Kanokano.

The islanders are largely relying on basic store goods and if supplies haven’t reached them then they will resort to dry coconut, fish, Kanokano (swamp taro) and this has been their staple food. If there’s ship going there is food supplies which their diet will then change a bit.

The government assists the district due to its current status as one of the vulnerable communities in the region.

Autonomous Bougainville Government through its responsible authorities are working together to assist situations and provide the needs for the islanders. Such needs provide are basically health, education and most importantly the food supplies. Therefore tons of kilogram of bale rice are becoming the staple food for the entire Atolls district.

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The plight of Takuu seen worldwide in documentary

International acclaim has been poured on a documentary film that examines the effects of climate change on the Takuu atoll and the people that live there.

There Once was an Island: Te Henua e Nnoho  follows the lives of three individuals from Takuu as they take on the challenges of climate change.

The low-lying atoll consists of 15 islands and is situated around 250km northeast of Bougainville.

The stars of the film, Teloo, Endar and Satty, each in their own way have their unique traditional Polynesian lifestyles and culture threatened by the emerging global environmental crisis.

The people of Takuu are exposed, as much as any other group on the planet, to the realities of global climate change. Their coastlines are being eaten away by ever rising high tides and increasingly vicious storms which destroy gardens and homes.

The long term habitability of the islands are uncertain and film looks to follow the three stars as they look to forge their own paths, be it through relocation to Bougainville or fighting for survival on Takuu.

There Once was an Island has already won several awards, including best international documentary at the Rome International Film Festival and best documentary at Raindance Film Festival.

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Ursola Rakova speaks out on the realities of climate change

Ursola Rakova, executive director of the Tulele Peisa, has called for action on global climate change as her native Carteret Islands are gradually reclaimed by the ocean.

Rakova, who hails from the Han islet, is the executive director of Tulele Peisa, a non-government organisation initiated by the Carterets Council of Elders to address ever-worsening challenges of global warming, including the need to resettle residents of the islands.

“The Pope’s message to the world, not just to us Catholics but to the world, emphasises the preservation of Mother Earth,” Ms Rakova told Rowena Orejana at the NZ Catholic newspaper.

“As custodians of Mother Earth, we all have a part to play in protecting this earth.

“If we look at people who will be displaced, these people should be at the centre of humanitarian support.”

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For over half a century there have been discussions about relocation, but in 2006 the people of the Carterets decided to take matters in their own hands by establishing Tulele Peisa, which translates from Halia as ‘sailing the waves on our own’.

“The Catholic Church of Bougainville recognised the situation back in 1963 and started to talk about relocating the people. This was reaffirmed in 2007,” Ms Rakova continued.

“We want to move people within the age group of 18 to 45. We feel that this is an active population and they will be able to sustain themselves on the sites given to us.”

In the 1980s there was an attempt to relocate people to Central Bougainville, but this was unsuccessful as the Carterets people could not settle in the area due to a lack of dialogue and support from the local people and the onset of the Bougainville Crisis.

In 2009 a relocation project began to move people from the atolls to land in Tinputz that had been owned by the Catholic Church of Bougainville.

“We are rehabilitating the plantations and giving each family one hectare of land to cultivate,” Rakova said.

“We also need to support people in keeping their identity; we are moving away, but not completely. We want to maintain cultural connectedness. We want to preserve that. We want to move with dignity. We are proud of our inheritance and we want to keep that.”

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US Navy treats injured from Carterets boat accident

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Trevor Andersen, Pacific Partnership 2015 Public Affairs

ARAWA, Autonomous Region of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea (NNS) — The Military Sealift Command hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) sent an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter on a critical care patient transport mission June 30 to retrieve six injured people, including an 18-month old infant, from Han Island, a small land mass off the coast of Carteret Island in Papua New Guinea.

Mercy received all six patients who were immediately provided medical care.

“All patients are currently in good condition,” said Capt. Melanie Merrick, the commanding officer of the military treatment facility USNS Mercy.

The Deputy Chief Secretary of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, contacted the U.S. embassy in Port Moresby to request assistance transporting the civilians, who were survivors of a small vessel reported lost at sea June 27.

The Mission Commander of Pacific Partnership 2015, Capt. Chris Engdahl, directed his maritime operations center aboard Mercy to launch one of its helicopters from Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 21 to pick up the injured and transport them to the ship for immediate care.

The injured had swam ashore after being lost at sea June 27. On that same day, Mercy received a request for search and rescue support from the Chief Secretary of the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) through the U.S. Embassy in Port Moresby. The ABG reported a small boat missing at sea along with several passengers, one of whom was an infant. The boat had been in transit from Buka to Carteret Island.

In response, Mercy launched two helicopters, both with Navy search and rescue swimmers on board, to search the area, but they were unable to locate the boat or any survivors.

Of the passengers on board, six were able to swim to shore including a mother and her 18-month-old infant. The other remaining passengers remain unaccounted for, but a search operation continues led by the Papua New Guinea National Maritime Safety Authority.

Mercy is currently in Papua New Guinea for its second mission port of Pacific Partnership 2015. Pacific Partnership is in its tenth iteration and is the largest annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. While training for crisis conditions, Pacific Partnership missions to date have provided real world medical care to approximately 270,000 patients and veterinary services to more than 38,000 animals. Critical infrastructure development has been supported in host nations during more than 180 engineering projects.

Additional information on the Pacific Partnership mission is available on the U.S. Pacific fleet Pacific Partnership website at www.cpf.navy.mil/pacific-partnership/2015/ .

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Couple tie the knot with traditional atolls wedding

By Jennifer Nkui

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While most couples nowadays prefer white gowns, black ties and church weddings, Matasi Sansan and Tintoro Manoa preferred to tie the knot in a traditional wedding ceremony – and that is the Atolls way.

After dating for about six months the couple decided to wed among family and friends.

The wedding ceremony, which took place on the afternoon of Saturday 21 February 2015, was a very colourful occasion which saw family members and friends of the bride and groom come together to witness the sacred union of the two.

As is their custom, the bride and groom were dressed traditionally in separate houses at different locations before they were brought to the central place where the marriage ceremony was to be held.585-aisle-bride-atolls-wedding

Normally, the wedding ceremony is usually celebrated traditionally but for this couple who wanted something more traditional decided to have reverend Tim Arthur involved so he could bless their marriage.

So that Saturday afternoon 31 year old Tintoro Manoa, a finance officer with Post PNG from Tasman Island in the Atolls, married her soul mate, 39 year old Matasi Sansan, a supervisor at the Lihir Gold mine.

The traditional wedding ceremony included speeches from family members of the bride and groom and traditional performances. There were also common acceptance speeches from family members of the bride and groom, an acknowledgement of acceptance of the couple into their families.

Present for the ceremony was the Chief Secretary in the Autonomous Bougainville Government, Mr Monovi Amani, and the Atolls Member of Parliament, Frank Pasini Marena, who are both uncles of the groom.

Mr Amani was invited to give a speech in which he stressed that marriage is an institution by God, a unifying occasion in the spirit of togetherness. He said that the exchange of rings shows that the institution cannot be broken by anyone.

585-atolls-wedding-ringThe highlight of the event was when the couple exchanged their vows followed by the exchange of rings and a kiss to seal their marriage which signified that they are now husband and wife.

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