THE Kokoda Track Authority (KTA) last week presented to the Minister for Tourism Arts and Culture Charles Abel, the Kokoda Track Sports Development Programme’s 2009 activity and financial report along with the KTSDP rugby league jersey.
The jersey was donned by the programme’s initial batch of 17 youths from the Kokoda area, who apart from taking part in the rugby league skills development and talent identification programme, took the time out to promote various trekking companies and PNG surfing destinations to surfers on the Gold Coast beaches.
The KTSDP is a self-funded project established last September with the aim of promoting the Kokoda Track and other PNG tourist destinations, while at the same time, promoting local sporting talents on the Australian market.
Abel assisted with the programme’s maiden trip to Queensland last November and it is part of his continuing support to various groups in the Kokoda area such as porter’s associations and others from villages along the iconic track.
The programme is run at local schoolboys and senior competition levels.
Four teams in Queensland local competition, including the Gold Coast Titans junior development management team have expressed interest in the arrangement with the latter offering rugby league scholarships.
KTA chairman James Enage, in presenting the report to the minister, said: “Though the KTSDP initially focused on rugby league, the KTSDP will eventually branch off into other sporting codes.”