PNG book to inspire children

Buk bilong Pikinini received a donation of 25 copies of ‘The Tonda’ by author and publisher Glenn Armstrong.

The Tonda. A journey on the Bensbach River, Tonda Wildlife Management Area, Western Province, Papua New Guinea, is a beautiful 112 page hardcover ‘coffee-table book that depicts one of the most remote and pristine environments in PNG.

Located in Western Province, near the Indonesian border, The Tonda Wildlife Management Area covers 590,000 hectares and contains more than half of New Guinea’s bird population plus millions of insects, plants and microorganisms that inhabit ecosystems within the region.

The book includes brilliant photography by acclaimed PNG photographer Rocky Roe, with words and interviews by Glenn Armstrong.

The book donation was received on May 7th by founder and chair of Buk bilong Pikinini, Anne-Sophie Hermann and Leanne Resson, Deputy Executive Officer at Hagara Library Learning Centre, in Hanuabada. 

On receiving the books, Hermann said: “Donations such as this are vital to our cause as we seek to establish more Library Learning Centres and also donate books to schools across PNG so they can restore their depleted school libraries.

“It is vital for PNG children to be able to recognise and appreciate the beautiful and unique flora and fauna, which can be found here. This book is a great addition to our collection books seeking to inspire children to want to learn to read and write.”

On presenting the books, author Glenn Armstrong said: “The book’s initial attraction to children will be in the photographs, which feature the landscape, people, fauna and flora of Western Province. As children mature and learn to read with a hunger for knowledge, they will begin to understand the accompanying words.

“It is a great introduction to reading as pictures inspire the imagination and make us want to learn more.

“What’s unique about The Tonda is that it is exclusively about Papua New Guinea, at a time when we all need to be thinking about conservation in a global context. Children are our future thinkers and leaders - and this book will light the spark and inspire them to learn and do more. I am sure this is exactly in line with the fantastic work being done by Buk bilong Pikinini,” Armstrong said.

In presenting the book, Glenn Armstrong also recognised the contribution of photographer Rocky Roe, whose work is featured in the book; as well as local company JWK Pacific who are distributors of the book in Papua New Guinea.

The Tonda is available through all leading retail outlets in PNG, and within Jacksons International Airport departure terminal. 

About Buk bilong Pikinini

Buk bilong Pikinini is an independent charity based in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea which aims to foster a life-long love of reading and learning, increase literary rates and empower vulnerable children.

Buk bilong Pikinini aims to do this via the establishment of children’s libraries in target communities across PNG and by providing books and literacy materials to communities and schools in need.

Buk bilong Pikinini was established in 2007 with a mission to try to help increase literacy rates in Papua New Guinea by setting up children's libraries in community based localities.

Buk bilong Pikinini seeks to provide learning opportunities for the most vulnerable children in society who miss out on formal education, and also support those who are fortunate enough to go to school but who lack the most essential tools for literacy; books. Each library has more than 2000 high quality children's books as well as educational toys and craft materials.

A literacy based learning programme is conducted in all libraries on a daily basis and a syllabus has been especially created to cater for PNG children. There is a strong focus on early childhood learning in the mornings but children of all ages can attend library sessions after school.

All eighteen libraries have been established where vulnerable children tend to congregate and Buk bilong Pikinini seeks to support both sick, disabled and healthy children alike.

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Press release