West Sarmi is a larger village with a population of approximately 20 000. Rita has taught here since the BPEC began back in January 2017, there are 70 students, including 12 adults.
Although Sarmi is just over 300 km west of Jayapura road conditions mean that it takes approximately 6-7 hours by road. Heavy rainfall in Papua causes constant degradation of the road and its 100+ water crossings/bridges. The result is a road with many potholes and wash outs, and a very long, slow journey.
The Klasis Sarmi (the local church) has been very supportive of the BPEC supplying a classroom and accommodation for the teachers, and photocopying facilities for class work. The parents of the students have also recently formed a committee to support Rita and the classes.
Nabire is a larger city with a population of approximately 80 000. Located to the west of Jayapura, access is limited to air travel due to Papua’s mountainous landscape.
"Two of the BPN teachers, Ryon and Fred are located here. Fred, who is needed more and more in a managerial role, has a smaller class load to enable him time to do this.
Waibu Moy is located a half an hour from Sentani to the west of Jayapura.
Classes were started stared here in August 2018 by Yanti. She has 38 primary school students, 14 high school students, and five adults in her classes.
On the road from the capital Jayapura, approximately 10-15 minutes by car/motor bike before Sarmi, lies the village of Sawar. This village showed a great deal of interest in the BPN English course.
Due to the distance from West Sarmi Klasis students wanting to attend classes needed to go by ojek (motor bike taxi) and pay $2 for the trip. This modest amount of money was a lot for the parents to pay on a regular basis, so the parents joined forces and asked Rita to come to them, and offered to pay for her transport.
The students in this village are keen to attend classes and their parents are very supportive. Rita teaches twice a week at this location, on a Thursday and Friday, and the classes are held outdoors at the GKI Peniel Sawar Church.
Napan is a small coastal village with a population of approximately 1000. Within the village is a boarding school for children from surrounding remote coastal and island communities.
The children boarding at the school come to Napan from Monday to Friday and are dropped off and picked up by boat. It is at this school that the BPN classes are run by our teacher Willy.
The classes cater for 60 children who come of their own accord when they could be out playing soccer, fishing or a number of other things that children love to do.
Conditions in Napan are challenging. Like many small villages in Papua electricity, supplied via generator, is only available in the evening. This means technology such as projectors and computers are not an option, and even photocopying or printing of resources needs to be carefully planned.
Martewar & Arbais are two small villages in the Apawer district which are approximately 45 minutes apart and an hour’s drive from Sarmi.
Although the district is only home to approximately 3000 people there are 120 students signed up to start as soon as a teacher can be found.