Aussie agencies brighten village with solar lights


Two weeks after homes of more than 200 families in Hanuabada village, in Port Moresby, were destroyed, two Australian non-governmental organisations have distributed over 800 solar lights to the village.
International aid organisation Kokoda Track Foundation and Australia’s SolarBuddy recently worked alongside Hanuabada relief coordinators Dadi Toka Jr and Lohia Samuel to deliver solar lights to the community.
SolarBuddy and Kokoda Track Foundation have been partnering for the past 12 months to light up the lives of children and families in remote areas across Papua New Guinea.
Together, they have distributed over 3000 solar lights to communities in Northern, East Sepik and New Ireland and the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.
Solar lighting reduces reliance on the burning of toxic kerosene, dangerous campfires, and expensive battery powered torches for lighting, and enables children to do their homework after dark, parents to work on small businesses, and improves security for women and children at night.
“When we heard about the devastating fires that destroyed the houses and livelihoods of so many residents in Hanuabada village, we knew we had to respond,” Kokoda Track Foundation chief executive officer Dr Genevieve Nelson said.
“This is our small way of lending a hand to the Hanuabada community, letting them know that they are in the hearts and minds of Australians at this difficult time.”
The distribution effort was coordinated by National Capital District Governor Powes  Parkop and the Hanuabada relief committee who have been instrumental in supporting local residents to get back on their feet.
SolarBuddy founder and chief executive officer Simon Doble said these solar lights, partly donated by school children in Australia, would help the families stay safer in this difficult time.
“Hopefully, the children of Hanuabada will also use them for their homework to progress their very important education,” Doble said
Kokoda Track Foundation and SolarBuddy will continue to roll out joint-solar energy projects to communities in remote and rural Papua New Guinea and villages and settlements in Port Moresby.

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