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In many cases, the expatriate experience in Papua New Guinea had an outcome that the outsider could never have expected: people became emotionally wedded to the country and its people, and continued to feel that attachment for the rest of their lives – even if they never returned to PNG’s shores.

The expatriate experience was also unusual since it frequently placed ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. This often had a lifelong influence on those people, who knew that Papua New Guinea had changed them and that they would always define themselves a little differently because of it. These people retain a common bond and understanding.

It is therefore not surprising that many of these people—who would not normally put pen to paper or poise fingers awkwardly over a keyboard—have felt the call to record their experiences. In doing so they have done future generations of Australians and Papua New Guineans a service, because what are revealed are stories and incidents and thoughts that go beyond the official record and beyond the ken of historians.

What is also revealed is the unvarnished reality of the challenges facing men and women who were tasked to do their bit to transform nearly a thousand tribes into a single nation.

The history of the settlement of Papua New Guinea indicates that people first arrived there 40-50,000 years ago when sea levels fell due to an ice age. The island was joined to the Australian continent until about 6,000 years ago, as a result sharing with Australia many species of plants and animals, including marsupials.

The more recent history of European colonisation, nation building and national independence dates back only to the 19th and 20th centuries. It is the latter period that concerns us here, since the outsiders who settled and lived in Papua New Guinea can tell their stories. They are stories of a time that is becoming distant and of a place that has changed. They are stories that needed to be told while they could be told. The PNGAA has published many of them in its journal, Una Voce, and is able to record more here.

Anzac Day 2019

A memorable day in Sydney – see photos:

Dr Haydee Paiva triumphantly waves PNG and Solomon Island flags at Mt Everest base camp

A Solomon Islands doctor has given her PNG ‘tambus’ a sneak peek of Mount Everest. Dr Haydee Paiva, a keen hiker and budding mountaineer, reached the base camp of Mt Everest on April 15 from the Nepal side. Dr Paiva works at the Paradise Hospital in Port Moresby as an anaesthetist or dokta blo slipim man na ...

Electronic Tuberculosis (TB) patient management system

Australia is proudly supporting Dr Patrick Koliwan and David Valentine, founders of health-tech startup Refer Tech that have developed an electronic tuberculosis (TB) patient management system. The prototype is being piloted at the Kaugere Health Centre and has so far cut TB patient review times from around 20 minutes to just two minutes per patient! TB patients ...

International federation of basketball team visits PNG

The team from FIBA, the international federation of basketball, were in Port Moresby recently along with representatives from Basketball Federation of Papua New Guinea. Since last year #PNGAusPartnership supported the #Hoops4Health program in communities within the National Capital District which has seen an increase of women participation in basketball. The Basketball Federation of Papua New Guinea was ...

Joint national strategy to combat sorcery accusation related violence

Papua New Guinea’s major churches have committed to a joint national strategy to combat sorcery accusation related violence, declaring their determination to help end a practise blamed for destroying hundreds of lives and damaging dozens of communities across the country every year. In a landmark development, the 10 main denominations have adopted the National Churches Strategic ...

Tour de New Ireland Cycling event – Boluminski Highway

11 April 2019 marked the opening of upgrades to the Boluminski Highway in New Ireland – a project led by the Papua New Guinea Department of Works and funded by the PNG-AusPartnership. As part of celebrations marking the completion of works, the New Ireland Provincial Government, #PNGAusPartnership and Newcrest Mining held the inaugural Tour de ...

Rabaul & Montevideo Maru Memorial News, March 2019

Australian War Memorial Re-development The Australian War Memorial has developed a detailed proposal to the Government of the Commonwealth of Australia to fund a major redevelopment of the Memorial’s galleries and precinct, and create a guiding vision for the next 50 years. https://www.awm.gov.au/about/our-work/projects/FuturePlans The area appears to surround the Rabaul and Montevideo Maru Memorial so we have contacted ...

Perth, Western Australia, PNGAA group

Perth, Western Australia, PNGAA group lunch held at Bull Creek RAAFA Base 29 March 2019. 21 members and friends attended the autumn lunch in Perth. Graham Bowden gave a talk about his time in the technical education sector and his vast involvement in sports, in particularly Aussie Rules, in PNG. Jill Worsley brought along the PNG ...

Graham Henry John Pople MBE 14 March 1935-11 February 2019

With sadness PNGAA advises that Graham Pople passed away on 11 February 2019, aged 83 years. The Pople family extend an invitation to Graham’s family and friends to join them in celebrating Graham’s life on Friday 15 February 2019, 1.30pm at Cairns Funeral Directors, 36 Pease Street, Cairns. Following the service the family would like to ...

The National Anthem of Papua New Guinea

The following was prepared for the 30th Anniversary of PNG Independence booklet produced by the Papua New Guinea Association of Australia Inc – with special thanks to Ross Johnson. THE NATIONAL ANTHEM OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA Thomas Shacklady MBE, the composer of the PNG National Anthem “O ARISE ALL YOU SONS OF THIS LAND” was born in ...

Advice regarding the 2018 Polio Outbreak in Papua New Guinea: Australian Government Department of Health

There is an outbreak of polio currently occurring in Papua New Guinea (PNG). What is polio? Polio is short for poliomyelitis. It is a serious viral disease that can lead to long-term disability, paralysis and death. How to protect yourself Vaccination is your best defence against polio. If you are travelling to PNG, don’t run the risk of getting sick ...

Butterfly Bows Quilt – a Silent Auction item at the Sydney Christmas Lunch 2 December 2018

YES! Early bids accepted!  If you would like to bid in the lead up to the Christmas luncheon, please Email: events@pngaa.net PNGAA is delighted, and very appreciative, that the Canberra “Broomsticks & Bobbins’ Quilters’ Group have donated a beautiful quilt as part of the Sydney Christmas lunch Silent Auction. Postage will be at the highest bidders expense if ...

Gideon Kakabin donations via PNGAA here

Gideon Kakabin was an important, highly respected and much loved leader in East New Britain and Papua New Guinea.   After completing a four week residency at the Australian War Memorial, and about to begin his journey home, Gideon suffered a heart attack and was admitted to a hospital in Canberra where he suffered another massive heart ...

Sean Dorney in Manus – Foreign Correspondent, ABC TV, Tuesday 21 August 2018 at 8pm, AEST.

Join Sean Dorney on a special visit to Papua New Guinea – Foreign Correspondent, ABC TV, Tuesday night 21 August 2018 at 8pm AEST. Few correspondents have etched themselves more deeply into the life of a country they’ve covered than Sean Dorney. Sean first reported from Papua New Guinea for ABC News more than 40 years ago. ...

‘Headhunt Revisited with Brush, Canvas & Camera’ documentary screening 27 July 2018 NFSA

Australian Premiere Screening Where: Arc Cinema, National Film and Sound Archive, Canberra, ACT When: 27 July 2018 at 6pm Tickets: $10 Book at: https://www.nfsa.gov.au/events/headhunt-revisited-brush-canvas-and-camera The documentary film, Headhunt Revisited: With Brush, Canvas and Camera is about Caroline Mytinger and the power of art to span oceans and decades. In 1926, Caroline Mytinger and her friend, Margaret Warner, set out on ...

Connecting Papua New Guinea and Australia through the Arts – Lowy Institute 13 June 2018

The arts have unique potential to connect people and inspire new interest in a place and its traditions. There are thousands of years of indigenous history and culture in Australia and Papua New Guinea. A workshop, Connecting Papua New Guinea and Australia through the Arts, was held on 13 June 2018 at the Lowy Institute, Sydney. ...

PNGAA congratulates Barry Francis KIRBY AO, Susan McGrade OBE, Charlie Lynn OAM and Greg Anderson OBE for their awards in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2018.

Charlie Lynn OAM For service to the people and Parliament of New South Wales Australia Susan McGrade OBE For service to commerce and the community of Rabaul PNG Greg Anderson OBE – PNG For service to the community and commerce in the mining and petroleum sectors PNG Barry Francis KIRBY AO For distinguished service to Australia-Papua New Guinea relations through the development and delivery of ...

76th Anniversary – Fall of New Guinea Islands and Montevideo Maru

  76th Anniversary – Fall of New Guinea Islands and the Montevideo Maru Last Post Ceremony, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT All welcome Date: 30 June 2018 Time: 4.40pm Place: Australian War Memorial, Pool of Reflection On 30 June 2018 the fall of the New Guinea Islands and the sinking of the Montevideo Maru will be commemorated at the moving Last Post ...

Narara family proudly flying the PNG flag

In February 2018 Nigel Narara checked out on the Airbus A330 aircraft as a captain. As a commander he is now flying on both the A330 and A320 under the mixed-fleet flying programme with Etihad Airways. Nigel moved to the UAE as a seven year old when his father, Granger Narara, began flying ...

The Reckoning

Thirty years ago, an acclaimed series of documentaries by Bob Connolly and Robin Anderson introduced the world to an isolated tribe in Papua New Guinea. What happened when the cameras left? In 2016 Bob returned… https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/the-reckoning-180968082/#Cox8dKh8eVpzGqV7.03 With thanks to the Smithsonian Magazine.