Wed 31 Jan 2007
In 2006, Oxfam started working with some local health, women’s and youth groups in Tari who were concerned to try and reduce violence in and around their town. After a State of Emergency was declared in September, there was a fear that police would enter communities to seize weapons by force. So the civil society groups worked together with the community police in Tari to encourage the peaceful surrender of weapons and no police raids took place. Since the emergency, security in Tari has improved markedly; a road project is now underway and services are being restored (banking, post office). Still basic education and healthcare are apparently abysmal and Tari is pushing for the establishment of a separate Hela province to try and improve access to services. I went to PNG to meet with these and other groups to plan Oxfam’s research and advocacy into gun violence prevention. This photo shows James Palona from Tari Urban Youth Group (left) and Joseph Worai, who runs Community Based Health Care from Tari.