Me and my family are running this project since October 2013 in Goroka, located in the Eastern Highlands Province within Papua New Guinea. Goroka is the famous city which hosts the anual "Goroka Show" (normally around our independence day in September) - look it up on Google, you will be amazed.
Our habitat is based in beautiful mountainous surrounding with warm and sometimes chilly temperatures (for us highlanders). Me (Kelly) and my family - we have 4 kids - started developing the land and planted throughout the last 3 years more than 400 trees, flowers and herbs. The mission is to setup the natural habitat the native spiecies with native natural faun and fauna, educational for visitors and students about the png native plants and animal. We want to have the best natural habitat well developed for visitors, students, families and tourist as well as the best attraction for research, educational and pleasure.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help with Eco Projects
You as a volunteer will learn all about the endemic flora and fauna of Papua New Guinea and especially the nature of the Highlands. We will educate and teach you all important knowledge about Goroka and the Highlands.
You will have the opportunity to go to Mt. Hagen, climb the Mt. William (and others) in Chimbu, trek in nearby areas or watch world-famous Asaro Mudman. We will help you with anything you would like to do in here.
Furthermore you will have the chance to visit other villages and teach them how to cultivate honey bees. Learn how to build a traditional house, explore local cuisine and learn from local people's way of living to enrich your own understanding of the world.
We would like you to help us with -
1) The production of signage for certain endemic flowers and trees as well as the animals we are keeping in the habitat.
2) Work along with the local people to understand and utilize certain trees and herbs for further use.
(e.g. herbs against Malaria, certain wood to produce bow and arrow and so forth)
3) Building natural style houses to keep the place as authentic as possible as well as help with fencing, setting up new infrastructure for tourists and designing the land (e.g. paths, electric lines)
4) educating other villagers on how to keep Highland honey bees and hence you will be trained on how to build bee boxes, harvesting/extracting honey, process it and teach others what you have learned about it. Another task could be to teach the staff of the habitat of how to look after the tourist visiting the place and approach of maintaining and looking after the property (watering flowers, feeding animals and so forth).
5) create a catalogue of all the entire flora and fauna on our habitat to make it easier for us and the visitors to understand and learn about our rich environment.
6) update our website and take care of the email communication (English) with our guest/visitors.
7) teach us how to bake GOOD bread and make vegetable soups (check that we have our oven!)
8) any easy recipes for our local vegetables and fruits, kindly note our supermarkets are very basic, no variety in vinegars, sugars or flours here. Cabbage, green beans, (spring) onions, avocado, tree tomato, potato, broccoli, pumpkin, local greens, root type veggies. Banana, sugarfruit, passion fruit, citrus, papaya, pine apple
All these tasks are not mandatory and for sure there plenty of other things we would need help with. This is just an excerpt of the many tasks which have to get done. You are welcome to suggest other activities after your arrival and once you got to know everyone.
Our mini reserve has endemic plants and trees, hill slopes, waterfall, ground well and creek, two small houses, vegetable garden, a number of out buildings and animals (chickens, guinea pigs, pigs, birds and dogs), outdoor bathroom facilities
the project, we train and support +100 honeybee farmers on our minireserve and offsite. With this, we create +7 tons of yearly produce under the name MOUNTAIN HONEY, sourced in PNGs Eastern Highlands in the last decade.
We welcome all.
You can help in the honey project or help us plan (execute) structural water solutions.
STRUCTURAL (WATER) SOLUTIONS
Currently we mostly need a master plan for the site, catering for a hydro engineering design (drainage, irrigation, collection/distribution, plumbing, waste).
- irrigation solutions for dry (pump up/around) and wet season (drain away from walking paths)
- sewerage water natural cleaning after septic tank or other solutions
- collection methods for rainwater during the wet, distribution of rainwater during dry
- kitchen and bathroom solutions
- maximise rain water use for plumbing, irrigation, ...
- drainage solutions for the pathways
- composting for (vegetable) garden
- green house/ plant nursery
- waste handling
- content creation for the website, although internet here is difficult, expensive and medium/low quality (your own local or travel sim))
- bee box carpentry
- flyers and promotion material creation
- funding proposals offline (we have windows laptop)
SOCIAL and CULTURAL EXCHANGE
- juvenile delinquent
- hygiene teaching
- english teaching
- help local NGO
- teach basic computer skills
You will stay in a traditional house right next to the main area. You will have access to fresh water and electricity which is not always a standard in the area we are living in. You will have a western style shower and a proper bed to sleep in (incl. a Mosquito net). Since we are in the highlands there is no need for an AC but if you feel too hot we will give you a table fan.
like local png, bushcamping alike
- shower with rainbow head on the grounds
- toilet on the grounds
- water tank and taps on the grounds
- for your comfort, bring hand gels and babywipes, wash basin (can be bought in local supermarkets); bring shampoo, towel and washing powder
- own room with bed, pillows and cases, matras cover and blanket
- one outlet and ceiling light
- for extraordinary outages and comfort, we have candles and matches, possibly sleeping sheet or bag
- in your room kitchenette alike, water kettle and electric stove plate, no fridge
- for your comfort, bring easy food (self opening tins, easily potatoknife cut items...), wash basin and detergent
- you will receive occasionally in random frequency pumkin, cabbage, beans, avocado, banana, .... from our grounds
- count usd 50 a week complimentary for your own cereals, milk or coffee
- remember there is no fridge
- upon goroka town arrival get the bulk of your dry foods like oatmeal, allbran, nuts, olive oil, dry miso soup or brown grains. The best bread available here is at the birds of paradise hotel and is toastbread alike but at least fresh
- there are no restaurants or cafes to speak of, what there is in hotels. Birds of paradise hotel is acceptable but overpriced
- the frequent markets have banana, lemon, sugarfruit, papaya, pine apple, passionfruit, plenty of vegetables like pumkin, cabbage, onion, potato, long beans, avocado, cucumber, tree tomato, broccoli, carrots, paksoi
First of all we are very interested in your background. Are you a gardener, a plumber, a joiner or did you work already in tourism? Any knowledge you could share with us is highly appreciated.
The easiest way to get here would be a direct flight from Port Moresby to Goroka. Unfortunately, we do not have the funds to support your journey to or from Papua New Guinea.
We will provide you with some food that you can complement and with all the drinking water you need.
The town is only 10 minutes by bus and we are connected with the bus line 2 into the city. Walking will set you back 35-40 minutes and is perfectly safe to do.
We know, Papua New Guinea doesn't have the best reputation but let me tell you, you won't forget this experience.
You shouldn't be the most introverted person because locals like to approach people and are very talkative. Our area is safe and there is nothing to be afraid of, not even snakes or spiders :)
Nowadays, we only have a relatively internet connection up in the mountains. You can expect 3G throughout the day on your SIM. Sometimes Edge (E) is something you have to live with but its still good enough to check emails and chat on WhatsApp.
Please be aware that diseases such as Malaria, Typhoid or Tuberculosis do exist in here but if you take care of the most important vaccination at home you are good to go. Our hospitals aren't the best ones in the world but will provide the basics, even Malaria pills in the worst case but better to bring Malarone from your country.
Remember, we are up in the mountains (1500m above sea level), and hence there is little danger from these notorious bastards.
Walking alone after sunset ain't the best idea no matter how well you are prepared (Karate, Wing-Tsung). Always have some change (20 Kina) in your pocket to give the friendly gentlemen in front of you. That's normally all what could happen in here.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week