PNGAA Sydney Christmas Lunch 2022

A very successful Christmas lunch was held at North Ryde Golf Club in Sydney on Sunday 4 December 2022, with guest speaker Dulciana Somare-Brash, from Port Moresby.

Dulciana was a delight to meet, as were her two impressive daughters – Reia and Tia.  Our PNGAA members are always interested in current issues between PNG and Australia, and enjoyed the knowledgeable and candid talk very much.   It was refreshing to hear how life and the economy is in PNG at the grass roots level.  Dulciana, Reia and Tia enjoyed meeting other guests, and those attending thoroughly enjoyed meeting them! Thank you to Max Uechtritz for enabling this. 

It highlighted, again, that Australia needs to step up its own education to inform Australians about the significant joint history of our countries, with an outcome of broadening continuing links.

Thanks to Cheryl Marvell for organising the event so magnificently.  Guests were treated to a special treat – two magnificent cakes, beautifully decorated with the PNG Coat-of-Arms and the PNGAA logo, and they were absolutely delicious! Created by Cheryl Marvell they were greatly appreciated. Look at the photos and drool!

Kylie Adams-Collier kindly ensured we had some wonderful photos of the day – thank you Kylie – and thank you to Claire van Bakel and Roy Ranney who help behind the scenes with uploading these to the website.

This year we wished the beautiful Libby Cadden a ‘Happy 107th Birthday’ which she celebrated a few days later!  Bronwyn Vickers attended from near Port Macquarie bringing a delicate, hand-painted cream silk tablecloth, which she is hoping to find the name of the artist for, together with some Post Courier articles including stories of prime events in the lead up to PNG independence.  Items like this are always welcome and provide great conversations.  Joan Stobo attended with family – again a great supporter of PNGAA events and so good to see Joan looking fabulous.  Jane Clifton-Bassett came from Canberra way, encouraging some of her friends along too.  And there were more…

This year our fundraising was focussed on raising funds for the PNGAA Scholarship which will support secondary school students in PNG in the pursuit of their secondary education.

Initial funding will support two students attending secondary school in Wewak.  In time, PNGAA aims to extend this to more students.  Students with good citizenship qualities, sufficient academic ability, and a lack of family income – a lack of employment opportunities for their parents – will be selected from grade 9 to grade 12 for the program.  See information on the PNGAA website at .  PNGAA appreciates donations for this program and for your ongoing interest and support.

This year, the PNGAA Christmas lunch had a silent auction with the beautiful quilt donated by jill Worsley, along with a special framed tea towel of a lakatoi.  A table of PNGAA books was for sale, including the latest release by Rod Miller ‘Lost Women of Rabaul’ and Neville Threlfall’s ‘Mangroves, Coconuts and Frangipani: The Story of Rabaul’, together with the very useful PNGAA tote bags.

Phil Ainsworth, Roger Carroll and Rod Miller were ‘stars extraordinaire’ helping with sales and fundraising.   We collected $2285.53 which covered PNGAA book and tote sales as well as the silent auction items.  Jill Worsley’s quilt raised an extraordinary $500 for the PNGAA Scholarship Fund – it was wonderful to see the generosity of members who bid, thank you.

Together with funds raised at the Melbourne and Perth lunches we have given the PNGAA Scholarship fund a great start!

PNGAA events are always great gatherings of people and it’s appreciated when members travel distance and from interstate to join in.   Keep a watch on the 2023 calendar for an event near you and tell us about it!

Andrea Williams



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