The biggest family in Port Moresby

Imagine having 37 children.

That is the number of children in Colin Pake’s home.

But, only two are his own - the eldest (seven) and the youngest (five).

What about the other 35 children?

They are the unfortunate and under privilege children that Pake and wife accommodates.

The couple opened up their home to children in this situation at least 10 years ago.

Based at Gerehu stage 4, Port Moresby, the couple aim to provide basic human necessities such as food and nutrition for healthy bodies, clean water and access to medicine, shelter and love and education.

“We live, they go, they grow in the same house. The children age from 8 years old to 20 years,” said Pake.

“We don’t call ourselves an orphanage or institutional care or social care. We call ourselves a family, our home is called family home care.

“These residential kids lived with me for 10 years now. Some came when they were 10 years old and are 19/20 now.

“Our children see all these kids as brothers and sisters – they also call me teacher Collin in the house and my wife – Aunty Freda.”

The eldest girl completed her Grade 12 at Marianville Secondary School in 2016 and is currently at Port Moresby Technical School.

“If we hadn’t given her such an opportunity seven years ago, where would she be now?” he asks.

Pake is the national director of local charity Life Care PNG, under which his accommodation program falls.

There are also non-residential children the charity looks after, through various programs such as the Strongim Pikinini Education.

“We sustain our programs by fundraisings. But I need more support.

“These are the future generations. I don’t like seeing them standing on the streets and beg if they say PNG is full of resources.

“It’s time to invest in our key resource, humans,” he said.

Gloria Bauai