Network Kokoda – Protecting our wartime heritage and honouring the legacy of PNGs Wartime Carriers

Network Kokoda LogoNetwork Kokoda is a not-for-profit organisation established to protect our wartime heritage along the Kokoda Trail and honour the legacy of Papua New Guinea’s Wartime Carriers. We have applied for tax-deductibility status and hope to have it approved early in the New Year.

The organisation subscribes to the principles developed by the PNG Department of Community Development which, according to former Minister, Dame Carol Kidu, is based on local communities working together to develop sustainable initiatives which generate income to invest in their future.

Network Kokoda is registered in Australia and Papua New Guinea.

The Australian body is chaired by Brigadier Phil McNamara AM (RL).  The Executive Officer is Lieutenant Colonel Rowan Tracey (RL).  Both served as officers with the Pacific Islands Regiment during their army careers and are fluent in Tok Pisin.

The PNG body is chaired by Major Charlie Lynn (RL).  The Board of Directors includes Dame Carol Kidu, former Minister for Community Development; Brigadier Ken Noga, former Chief of the PNG Defence Force and High Commissioner to Australia; and Marianna Ellingson, Secretary to the Office of Tourism, Arts and Culture. (more…)

Network Kokoda helps to make ‘PNG Hep B Free’

Alice LeeOur Kokoda networks have been engaged to help Dr Alice Lee achieve her goal of making ‘PNG Hep B Free’.

Chronic hepatitis B, the world’s second most potent carcinogen, is a life-long illness and prevalent throughout PNG. Hepatitis B is chronic if it has been in the body for more than six months. It occurs when the body cannot get rid of the virus, so it stays inside the body and can eventually lead to severe liver disease and liver cancer if left untreated. Chronic hepatitis B usually has no symptoms and that is why it is so dangerous.

A/Professor Dr Lee, MBBS (Hons), FRACP, PhD (University of Sydney) is a human dynamo. She is a Gastroenterologist and Hepatologist; Senior Staff Specialist, Concord Repatriation General Hospital; Head Gastroenterology, Macquarie University Hospital; VMO, The Canterbury hospital; Co-founder and Director: Hepatitis B free (non for profit charity to improve health outcomes to disadvantaged communities); President: Korean Australian Medical Association; Chair: Korean Health Committee; and Vice President: World Korean Medical Organisation

With generous support from Sue Huntley of Huntley Clinical Research Services they have formed a group with the primary aim of improving health delivery to Oro Province in PNG, up skilling the local health care workers through education and sourcing of ongoing training tools. They also plane to explore ways to improve nutrition and reduce preventable parasite infestation, i.e. worms. (more…)

Report on our Agricultural and Community Development Projects along the Kokoda Trail

Network Kokoda Logo

With the generous support of our Adventure Kokoda trekkers we have been able to establish Network Kokoda as a philanthropic organisation to honour the legacy of Papua New Guinean Wartime Carriers.

The organisation subscribes to the principles developed by the PNG Department of Community Development which, according to former Minister, Dame Carol Kidu, is based on local communities working together to develop sustainable initiatives which generate income to invest in their future.

Network Kokoda is registered in Australia and Papua New Guinea. We are hopeful that our application for tax deductibility will soon be approved.

The Australian body is chaired by Brigadier Phil McNamara AM (RL).  The Executive Officer is Lieutenant Colonel Rowan Tracey (RL).  Both served as officers with the Pacific Islands Regiment during their army careers and are fluent in Tok Pisin.

The PNG body is chaired by Major Charlie Lynn (RL).  The Board of Directors includes Dame Carol Kidu, former Minister for Community Development; Brigadier Ken Noga, former Chief of the PNG Defence Force and High Commissioner to Australia; and Marianna Ellingson, Secretary to the Office of Tourism, Arts and Culture. (more…)

Our Kokoda Footprint

Our Adventure Kokoda Trust was established to enable trekkers to leave a footprint in Papua New Guinea. Over the past decade we have placed more than 4000 books in the Port Moresby Grammar School library; sponsored student scholarships; provided educational supplies to all village schools along the Kokoda Trail as well as medical supplies to local hospitals and health centres.

In 2009 we established Network Kokoda as a not-for-profit organisation, to provide money, property and benefits to the people of Papua New Guinea through supporting education, health and leadership development initiatives – providing partnership opportunities between Australia and Papua New Guinea.

As we reflect over the past year our proudest achievement has been the establishment of an agricultural learning project at the Sogeri National High School – about half-way between Port Moresby and the start of the Kokoda Trail at Owers Corner. During the war the the Sogeri Plateau was the food bowl for Port Moresby however since then much of it has reverted to subsistence farming. Around 500 students’ board at the school and their diet is based on rice, tinned fish and not much else.

The school is also the focus point for the Sogeri community which is fragmented amongst various ‘wan-tok’ groups. Encouraging them to work together for their own community benefit is our primary challenge. (more…)

Our Network Kokoda Integrated Agricultural Learning Project at Sogeri

Adventure Kokoda was the foundation sponsor of Network Kokoda – a foundation established to honour the sacrifice of our Kokoda veterans and PNG wartime carriers.

Network Kokoda has based its philosophy on Community Learning Development Centres established by the former Minister for Community Development, Dame Carol Kidu.

We have engaged Mr Sandy Lawson, an agricultural scientist who has spent most of his woking life in PNG. Sandy is fluent in Tok Pisin and Motu and familiar with a number of other languages.  He has an empathetic understanding of Melanesian culture and is highly respected by Koiari and Orokaive leaders.

We have also engaged Oggie Erehetonz (pictured)who has a Diploma in Tropical Agriculture from University of Natural Resource and Environment in Popondetta. Oggie is an outstanding young graduate who is very keen to manage our Integrated Community Agricultural Learning Centres on the Sogeri plateau. Our next objective is to replicate this project at Kokoda.

Following is Sandy Lawson’s latest report on our Integrated Community Agricultural Learning Centres program: (more…)

Giving Back to the Track in 2010

Adventure Kokoda recenlty donated $35,000 to assist in the establishment of Network Kokoda a foundation which aims to develop a Master Memorial Plan for the Kokoda Trail in partnership with the Australian War Memorial, the RSL and the Kokoda Track Authority. Network Kokoda also plans to work in partnership with the PNG Department of Community Services to establishe Community Learning Development Centres along the Kokoda Trail and other areas in PNG in recognition of the PNG Wartime Carriers.

The Chairman of the foundation is Brigadier Phil McNamara. During his 35 years in the army Phillip served in the Special Air Service (SAS), the 1st Commando Regiment and the Pacific Islands Regiment in PNG – he is fluent in Tok Pisin. After leaving the army he was engaged as the Director General of the NSW State Emergency Service for seven years. For more information on Network Kokoda please click here: www.networkkokoda.org.au –

Adventure Kokoda has also established a number of philanthropic programs to assist PNG students in Port Moresby and villages along the track.  These include:

.  a Kokoda Bursary Program to assist PNG students at Port Moresby Grammar School and beyond;
.  a ‘Bring-a-Buk’ program to assist in the stocking of the school library;
.  a ‘Yumi Helpim Pikinnini Program to support village schools along the Kokdoa trail: and
.  a ‘Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel Trekking Program’ which involves sponsoring senior students and teachers from the Sogeri High School on our Kokoda Youth Leaderhip Challenge treks. (more…)