In response to the recently confirmed polio outbreak in Papua New Guinea, the YWAM Training and Medical Ship, MV YWAM PNG, will begin her next deployment with a large vaccine drive in collaboration with Morobe Provincial Government Health authorities.
YWAM Medical Ships volunteers and Morobe Provincial Health workers will form teams to do a large vaccine drive throughout the Finschhafen district. Teams will be deployed via small boats, 4WD vehicles, and a helicopter.
The MV YWAM PNG has been in her home-port of Townsville for the last two months undergoing maintenance and re-stocking, and is now en-route to Papua New Guinea. After the vaccine drive in Morobe Province, the ship will go on to six provinces throughout Papua New Guinea.
YWAM Medical Ships Managing Director, Mr Ken Mulligan, said that they were grateful to have the ability to join the provincial health authorities in responding to the outbreak.
“Our desire has always been for local health authorities to utilise the ship as a means to reach isolated areas. Our combined strengths and coordination will help us cover a large area in a short space of time.
“We are grateful for our many supporters that have enabled a patrol of this nature to be possible. The investment is building capacity and providing strength as we work together to achieve a shared vision; healthy villages and a healthy nation,” said Mr Mulligan.
In addition to the polio vaccine drive, teams will work in collaboration with provincial health authorities and a range of local health providers to deliver child and maternal health services, dentistry procedures, eye care (including sight-restoring eye surgeries), health education, water and sanitation projects, and collegial support and mentoring for local health workers.
YWAM Medical Ships Patron for Papua New Guinea, Sir Rabbie Namaliu, said he is looking forward to the YWAM Medical Ship returning to PNG’s waters.
“Every year YWAM Medical Ships’ operations go from strength to strength as we continue to build on partnerships and actively work toward better outcomes for the villages we engage.
“I’m grateful for the city of Townsville who have provided wonderful financial and logistical support over the last two months to help get the vessel ready for this deployment,” said Sir Rabbie.
Hundreds of volunteers from all over the world will join the MV YWAM PNG throughout the deployment. Around 25% of the volunteers will be from PNG, including deck and engine cadets, University of Papua New Guinea Medical students, and a range of health professionals.
To give a tax-deductible donation toward the deployment, visit this link.
Supporters of YWAM Medical Ships work in PNG include: PNG National Government, Puma Energy, Australian Aid, Henry Schein Halas, Steamships Trading Company, Network Communications, Morobe, Gulf, Western, Central, Oro and Milne Bay Provincial Governments, Lions Recycle for Sight, Port of Townsville, New Britain Palm Oil, Manolos Aviation, AkzoNobel, Gearbox Solutions, National Fisheries Authority PNG, PNG Ports Corporation, Sohe District Development Authority, Kiriwina-Goodenough District Development Authority, 1300SMILES, Honeycombes Property Development Group, Parkside Group, Haymans, Townsville City Council, Ela Motors, Ports North, Luminell, Northern Management Group, Lancini Property & Development, Mitsubishi Electric, Coutts Redington, Medical Dental Solutions, Pacific Islands International, Stanley Hotel and Suites, Pro-Ma Systems, Pacific Marine Group, Universal Cranes, Rotarians Against Malaria, Townsville Bulletin, Alcon, Mun Global, Sentry Medical, Hu-Friedy, Climatrol Air Conditioning, Mylan, GE Healthcare, BuzzOff, NQ Cowboys, Wilson Ryan Grose Lawyers, PwC, Trukai, Days for Girls, Septodont, Mocom Australia, Air Niugini, and FileMaker.