Thank you DFAT and the Friendship Grants team Lorraine, Kate, Gus and Helen … and now to start organising our VBA training for 2019. Yay!

Thanks Shea and Doug for joining me for the two day intensive workshops.@dfat.gov.au #FriendshipGrant#AustralianAid#AusSDGs @AusHumanitarian

We have been desperate to find a solution to the damaged water pump that serviced approx 5,000 people from the main Kiriwinan Village of Kavataria and have spoken to many organisations about possible solutions. At last we have managed to manufacture the missing part and we are now sending a Kiriwinan from the mainland, with the necessary skills, over the Kiriwina to fix the pump. Yeah!

Water pump in better times, CFK’s Mary Jonmundsson at the pump in 2017.

In an attempt to combat the rubbish issues on the Island we have started to include washable, reusable menstrual pads into the birthing kits (disposable pads only add to the rubbish problems on the Island).

One of the most effective ways we have to protect ourselves and others from illness is good personal hygiene and CFK focuses on training the VBA’s in these techniques.

Our intrepid CFK Team met this morning to discuss our years training options. (Midwife Jacqui there in spirit and rearing to go.) Go team CFK!

CFK VBA training co-director Vanessa Palfreeman, her ever supportive husband Andrew Sweeney, CFK co-director Doug Lawton and CFK Midwife trainer Shea Caplice.

This box contains birthing kits, lanterns, batteries for lanterns and headlamps, muslin wraps, acupuncture needles (for the experienced acupuncturist on the Island), Panamax and infant Panadol handed personally from CFK to the medical staff at Losuia Health Care Centre. Still no medicines on the Island 🙁 .


Another box of VBA supplies on their way to Kiriwina thanks to our wonderful Birthing Kit packers, Diana and Kylie Adams and all our fabulous donors. Thank you from the Caring for Kiriwina Team.

Photos of our head VBA’s, representing each circuit on Kiriwina, meeting on Saturday 22 Dec 2018 at Kavataria Village.

We have just been informed that the headlamps have finally been released by Customs without extra fees being charged and will shortly be winging their way to Kiriwina. Yay!

Sadly the internet connection is down again and the Losuia Health Centre, and the entire Island is still without a doctor and also now without of basic drugs with the sick people being told to return to their villages.

Check out our latest e-news, click on link below or scroll down.


December 2018


e-NEWS and Merry Christmas to all!!

Caring for Kiriwina Village Birth Attendant Training in October 2018: Intrepid CFK midwives; Jacqui Andrews and Shea Caplice in action with Midwife Bokowau translating.


It takes a lot of good hearted people to allow Caring for Kiriwina to achieve the great successes it has so far in it’s 6 years of existence. We would like to thank our wonderful CFK Team from Australia, intrepid Midwife Educators Shea Caplice and Jacqui Andrews; intrepid Deputy VBA Programme Head Vanessa Palfreeman; our in-country Head Toks Bwaina; our on-Island Head Lepani Ahab; our in-country training partners Ridley and Meisy Mwaisiga, Bokawau and Leness; our head VBA’s on the Island Ruth Boaz and Dulcie (and husband Nelson) Toposana and our hundreds of CFK members on Island.

With their help and the support of all our of our wonderful sponsors and donors we have managed to:

  • complete a successful Village Birth Attendants (VBA’s) training program this year which included 210 participants, all done in partnership with the Losuia Health Centre.
  • supply over 3,500 birthing kits Island wide.
  • review and adjust the contents of our birthing kits to include muslin wraps and washable menstrual pads.
  • supply over 100 torches and lanterns (some currently awaiting clearance in Moresby) to the VBA’s as well as thongs, uniforms and jumpers.
  • start to organise our next training trip scheduled for June 2019
  • investigate options for additional training of birth attendants as a result of the successful Friendship Grant application.

As a side note, we have been recently informed that there are currently no medicines at the Losuia Health Centre.  As the only medical facility on the Island of 55,000 people, this highlights the lack of basic essential services available to some of our closest neighbours who feel very remote and neglected.  On a brighter note, some power has been reinstated which has resulted in some SMS communication possible between us and the Island.Learn more

At Losuia Health Centre Office in October pictured from left: Health Officer Ridley Mwaisiga, CFK Midwife Jacqui Andrews, Front: Midwife Bokawa, behind Raymond. CFK Midwife Shea Caplice, Losuia Health Centre Nurse Meisy Mwaisiga and Jodi Lawton.

We are so thrilled that Caring for Kiriwina has been successful in our recent application to DFAT for an Australian Aid Friendship Grant! 

The core basis for the awarding of this grant is to train village birth attendants to safely deliver babies in remote areas of Papua New Guinea.  For more information go to this link. https://foreignminister.gov.au/releases/Pages/2018/mp_mr_181130.aspx

See screen grab below from the DFAT Friendship Grants announcement and CFK is first in line.

Thank you so much to the Australian Government! We will not let you down.

The Village Birth Attendant Training Project is supported by the Australian Government and implemented by Caring for Kiriwina.

Caring For Kiriwina
Please help the women & children of Kiriwina

Thanks again to all our donors for your ongoing support!