By Adelaide Sirox Kari – EMTV News, Port Moresby
There is a man on a mission to empower communities, to find a sustainable ways of earning an income at the same time, preserving their culture and traditions.
Dr. Jefery Noro founded Kainake Project a not-for-profit organization.
With funding from the United Nations Development Fund, the Kainake Project has set up a 75 hectare conservation zone and other projects in South Bougainville.
After growing up in Kainake, in the Siwai District of South Bougainville, Dr. Noro went on to study in Australia, the US and realised a need for sustainable development in his area.
“I had a feeling of responsibility that I had to do something. The community rallies around each other so well here, and I wanted to do something that saw me investing in the future of our people,” Dr. Noro said.
Dr. Noro established the Kainake Project, a not-for-profit organisation that works towards supporting and empowering the residents of his community.
The Kainake Project was a recipient of funds from the United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Small Grants Programme (SGP).
With just over K90,000 Dr. Noro established a 75 hectare conservation zone, planted 600 Vanilla vines, established a school to teach traditional cultural values, a resource centre for skills training, and has written a book containing details on plant species and their traditional uses within Siwai culture.
Ms. Tracy Vienings, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative said that the work of Dr. Noro and the Kainake community was inspiring.
“This is an exemplary set of interventions, and it is encouraging to see such an engaged and active group of community members taking steps to assess and protect the vulnerable habitat, species and local customs and traditions in Kainake,” Ms. Vienings said.
There to witness the launch were National Regional Member for Bougainvile, Honorable Joe Lera, and Member for South Bougainville, Honorable Timothy Masiu, with their counterpart from the Autonomous Bougainville Government, Honorable Willie Masiu, Minister for Police, Correctional Servic and Justice.
In 2017, UNDP’s Small Grants Programme celebrated 25 years of providing support to community-based interventions across 125 countries. In Papua New Guinea, the program has supported over 238 projects since 1994 with over USD$4.5 million disbursed as grant funds. 40 projects are currently being supported across Papua New Guinea.