Imagine if you, your child or a loved one couldn't finish high school? That’s the reality for many students in Bougainville, Papua New Guinea – a situation that Australian Marist Solidarity is striving to change.
There are just four upper secondary schools in Bougainville, offering around 500 positions for an estimated age cohort of several thousand. That means only 1 in 4 children will reach upper secondary school.
Australian Marist Solidarity has launched its mid-year appeal, Let Children Learn, aiming to fund the expansion of St Joseph’s College in Bougainville.
St Joseph’s, in the town of Mabiri, operates only until Grade 10.
This is a critical time for Bougainville, which is on the path towards independence from Papua New Guinea.
According to AMS CEO Rebecca Bromhead, the urgent expansion of the education sector is crucial to empower today’s youth, who will become tomorrow’s leaders.
“We believe education has the power to change lives and provide bright futures,” she said.
“By expanding St Joseph’s to provide upper secondary education plus boarding for young men in Bougainville will enable them to complete their full education.”
AMS has a strong history of delivering important educational projects in Bougainville. The Marist Brothers first established St Joseph’s College in the village of Rigu in 1949, having been in Bougainville since 1941.
During the Bougainville conflict the school was burned to the ground along with most buildings on the island. In 1999, the Marist Brothers established a new St Joseph’s College in the village of Mabiri.
Details: Let Children Learn campaign
Campaign launched to let children learn in Bougainville (Australian Marist Solidarity)