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Virtue of the week:

Cleanliness

Cleanliness means washing often, keeping your body clean, and wearing clean clothes. It is putting into your body and your mind only the things that keep you healthy. It is staying free from harmful drugs. It is cleaning up mistakes and making a fresh start.

 

 

Socio-Economic Projects

The Sirus Naraqi Project for Education and Awareness on HIV/AIDS was established in 2005 and dedicated to the memory of this outstanding doctor and counsellor by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of Papua New Guinea, in collaboration with Family Health International, UNICEF and USAid.  In just the first year of its operation this project helped to educate more than 30,000 people on both the medical and moral issues in dealing with the HIV/AIDS epidemic.  More than 700 people, including many couples, were assisted to gain access to counseling and testing for HIV/AIDS.

Bahá’ís in Papua New Guinea have established several training centres, aid posts and schools throughout the country.  Many of these have been sacrificially built and maintained by local Bahá’í communities, often in very remote areas where government services have been lacking.

A typical example of the increasing number of Bahá’í communities undertaking social and economic development projects in Papua New Guinea is the aid post built by the mothers of Mom village, the first village on Karkar Island to elect a Local Spiritual Assembly in the 1990’s.  These mothers were concerned about the lack of health care in their village and formed a group to do something about it.  For more than four years they struggled to raise enough money to build an aid post in the village by selling garden food and crafts at local markets and holding regular ‘Bring & Buy’ days for the project.

New Aid post, Mom vilalge, Karkar Island 2006
New Aid Post -Mom Village, Karkar Island - 2006

With great joy the mothers and the rest of the Mom community celebrated the completion of an aid post built with permanent building materials and a bush-material house for the Aid Post Officer.  In recognition of the self-reliance and perseverance of this group of Bahá’í mothers, the District Health Office allocated a trained nurse to serve the whole village at the Mom Aid Post.  The people of Mom are very proud of these mothers and their achievement.  Meanwhile the mothers are not resting easy – they are already raising more funds for their next project, a clean water supply for their village.

In keeping with the emphasis on education in the teachings of the Bahá’í Faith, the National Spiritual Assembly, in collaboration with the PNG Department of Education, has sponsored many students from remote rural areas to train as primary school teachers at government Teachers’ Colleges.  These graduates have then returned to teach in primary schools in their home areas, thereby helping to improve the education of children in these remote parts of the country.

Dance at Youth camp
Learning ‘step dance’ at Youth Camp in East New Britain

 

 

 

 
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