News Release

Australian School Furniture Donated to Papua New Guinea


Six large shipping containers filled with school furniture were recently received at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints chapel in Four Mile on 20th February 2019. A large number of young, full-time missionaries from the Church were on hand to unload and organise the donations, provided by the Pakenham Springs Primary School in Melbourne, Australia. Contents included 800 school desks, 1,200 chairs (including a large number of swivel chairs for use by teachers), laptop computers, large whiteboards, 90 boxes of school books and other school supplies.

The National Capital District Education (NCDE) provincial leaders as well as many school principals, headmasters, teachers, and students were present along with leaders of the Church.

Pacific Assist, a non-profit charitable organisation registered in Australia and New Zealand is the organisation which teamed with Pakenham Springs Primary School and LDS Charities, the humanitarian arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to make the donation to the schools of Port Moresby.

Eddie Alembo, Welfare/Humanitarian Services Manager for the Church in Papua New Guinea, represented LDS Charities. Between all three donating organisations, funds were collected to ship the containers to Papua New Guinea. The Pakenham Springs Primary School held a fundraiser to assist in this generous undertaking.

President Finau Hafoka, President of the Port Moresby Mission of the Church spoke at the turnover meeting and told the roomful of students that the high quality school furniture is a "gift" to them and their school. He encouraged them that the best way to show their gratitude is for each of them to study hard, get good grades and do well in school.

Mr. Homoka Boge and Mr. Pakou Gau from the NCDE provincial education department expressed their heartfelt gratitude for the meaningful donation, and gave out instructions as to how much furniture each of the 22 schools would receive.

Miss Julie Willey, the head teacher of a primary school in Port Moresby said, “On behalf of the primary schools, I want to say thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts for the desks and the chairs…because of the free education we have in Papua New Guinea, the enrollments have increased a lot. We have more than 50 children in a class…we have children sitting on the floor to learn. This is how eager the children are to learn. With this donation from Pakenham Springs Primary School, Pacific Assist and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I am very grateful. I want to say thank you so much for these donations of chairs and tables. It’s going to go a long way in helping our students to learn as much as they can."

Because of the Church's long-standing emphasis on educational excellence, leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Pacific were grateful to be able to team up with these other groups in providing much-needed help in this meaningful endeavour.  

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