July 2010

Conservation benefit: Establishment of a 988-acre no-take coastal marine conservation area

Community benefit: Community health clinic

Tavolo is situated in the Pomio District of East New Britain Province in Papua New Guinea. The area has extensive fringing coral reefs on the coast and a pristine forest on the mainland. The primary threats to these two ecosystems are from large-scale logging and overfishing. In 1997, an eight-square-mile Wildlife Management Area was gazetted under PNG’s Flora and Fauna Act. The community, along with local NGO Melkoi Local Environment Foundation, is working to extend the conservation area, to cover a total of 124 square miles.

The community would like to set up a 988-acre no-take reef and lagoon conservation area. The people of Tavolo, with the assistance of another local NGO, Mama Graun Conservation Trust, are committed to protecting their environment and will continue to refuse large-scale development proposals.

Approximately 500 people live around the Tavolo area in small hamlets. It takes about a day’s walk to get the nearest government station for medical care, and the trip requires crossing rivers, making it too difficult for community members to reach. Seacology is providing funding to build a community health clinic. In return, the community will establish a 988-acre no-take coastal marine conservation area.

Project Updates
January 2018
It took years of work from project coordinator Peter Kikele, but the people of Tavolo finally got great news: A nursing officer has been permanently stationed at the Seacology-funded clinic...
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May 2017
Project coordinator Peter Kikele is still doggedly advocating for the provincial government to appoint, and pay, a permanent community health worker. The conservation area is still being respected.
January 2017
Field Representative Sam Moko reports that a local health worker is working at the clinic as a volunteer and hopes to receive a formal appointment during the first half of this year. According to...
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April 2016
Field Representative Sam Moko reports that the clinic, built but standing empty for more than a year, may finally get a health worker from the government. Our project manager in the village says...
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February 2016
Field representative Sam Moko visited Tavolo recently. The Seacology-funded community clinic building was finished long ago, but the government has still not provided anyone to staff it. The...
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May 2015
The formal opening of the clinic was planned for April 2015, but although the clinic has now been registered under the Provincial Health Department system, the government has yet to assign a...
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January 2015
Field Representative Sam Moko reports that the community plans to formally open the clinic in April 2015. At that time, a Memorandum of Understanding regarding the project will be signed,...
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June 2013
The building is near completion, and plans are being made for the opening ceremony.
June 2012
As of the last update in February 2012, the project is in the construction phase. The community organized itself and purchased most of the construction materials, and provided a detailed...
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December 2011
According to Field Representative Sam Moko, the first phase of the project mobilization began on September 29th, 2011 and ended on November 23rd, 2011. After project leaders received the first...
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January 2011
Seacology PNG Field Representative Sam Moko visited the project area in November 2010. A community meeting was called and organized by the clan leaders of Tavolo. Men, women and children from the...
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