BOOKS FOR THE ISLANDS
Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Samoa, PNG
In 2017 WFWP has decided to support the remote villages of Lamlu and Lamnatu on Tanna (Vanuatu). This project has been initiated by Lina (a WFWP Supporter), in collaboration with Giulia (WFWP Australia Secretary and Island Projects Coordinator).
Lina (left) and Giulia (right) with the children of Lamnatu.
The two girls have spent one month together in different villages in Vanuatu during their volunteering experience, where they connected to the communities, built toilets and renovated houses. They fell in love with the people and the culture, and realised how much they desire to have good quality education.
How Books for the Islands started
WFWP Australia initiated the ‘Book for the Islands Project’ in 2008 as an initiative from the NSW Chapter. Since then, WFWP has shipped thousands of boxes of children’s books to local primary schools in Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands and Samoa. Many of the Island nations do not have libraries for their primary schools, and WFWP Australia has worked towards expanding the resources of libraries by suppling good quality children’s books in either the English or French language.
In partnership with UPF Vanuatu, books have been donated to schools recommended by Ambassadors for Peace in Vanuatu.
In our 2014 shipment, 600 books were sent to the Fresh Wota Bilingual School (elementary school) in Port Vila. This school sent a thank-you letter to WFWP Australia. Another set of books went to a child care centre in Port Vila.
Child Care Centre, Port Vila, Vanuatu, 2014.
Christ the King School, Samoa, 2010.
The beautiful children of Lamnatu.
Lamnatu and Lamlu are remote villages situated on Tanna Island, in the Tafea province of Vanuatu. The entire island has a population of 29'000 people and is mainly known for their coffee, which is exported to other countries.
A few villages are modernised, and houses have electricity and running water, but most of them do not have any of these. This is the case for the inland area where Lamnatu and Lamlu are located.
The children of the villages were very curious to learn more about the world, since none of them had ever left their village on Tanna before. Although most of them love their life on the island, there is a strong desire to see the world and to pursue a proper education.
However, due to the lack of resources on the island, most young adults are forced to study overseas to pursue any kind of career. This puts a lot of pressure on their families, which have to make enormous sacrifices to be able to afford paying for their child's study expenses. Nevertheless, most families believe in education and parents hope their children will have the chance to leave the island to have a future with more resources.
Local schools (a French and an English one) are located nearby the two villages. Lina, Giulia and the other volunteers visited one of them and had a chance to present themselves to the students and talk about their respective country of provenience. There they learned that the school did not have a world map, so they arranged for one to be donated to the school.
Now, in collaboration with WFWP Australia, they are hoping to support these villages and create libraries in their schools by providing them with good quality books.
The primary and secondary school of the Middlebush region on Tanna.
Group picture of one of the classes in the local school.
Lina with all the boxes of books donated by the Lycée Condorcet, a local french school in Sydney, NSW.
Packing the books and getting them ready for shipping
Unloading the van and preparing the boxes to be shipped.
Lina and Giulia have now collected over 2000 books to be sent to those villages. The books have been boxed and shipped to Port-Vila, Vanuatu. They have arrived at the start of March 2018. They are now going to be delivered to the schools by one of our WFWP Australia members.
In the meantime, Lina and Giulia hope you feel inspired to support the shipping cost of this project by clicking on the donate button on top of the page.