AusPNG Health Diplomacy and Educational Transformation

Australia’s Global Health Ambassador Dr. Lucas de Toca, delved into Papua New Guinea's health initiatives, witnessing firsthand how the nation tackles its health challenges while building on its successes.

He took a journey last week across Morobe and the National Capital District, where he engaged with community members, frontline health workers, and political leaders, discussing shared health challenges and the commitment to address them collaboratively.

During his visit, Dr. de Toca met with the PNG Health Minister Dr. Lino Tom to understand the country's health priorities and its vision for the future. The discussions centred on strengthening the #PNGAusPartnership to foster a healthier PNG and Pacific region.

In Morobe, Dr. de Toca visited key health facilities including the Mutzing Health Clinic and the ANGAU Memorial Hospital, emblematic of Australia's substantial infrastructure investment in PNG since its independence. In Port Moresby, he engaged with dedicated staff from various health institutions and the School of Medical and Health Sciences.

Meantime, in Tapini, Central Province, the Sacred Heart Secondary School is preparing for a significant transformation following the inauguration of yet another Australian government-funded project to upgrade the school’s facilities.

The initiative seeks to enhance the quality of education, increase enrollment in grades 11 and 12, and provide skills training for youth, particularly empowering girls in the Goilala District.

Through Australia's Incentive Fund grant, the Sacred Heart Secondary School upgrade will encompass renovations and extensions of administration buildings, female dormitories, staff residences, and a rural technology centre. The project also includes the construction of two teachers’ houses and additional female student dormitories.

Past Australian support has already made significant strides in improving infrastructure, leading to the school's first-ever graduation of year 12 students in 2019 and attracting enrolments from across the country.

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