Container with computers, books and desks bound for PNG

Grade 8 boy Daniel White and Harry Graepel load the container at St Mary's in Cairns. Daniel's friend Noah Law also helped.

Grade 8 boy Daniel White and Harry Graepel load the container at St Mary’s in Cairns. Daniel’s friend Noah Law also helped.

A container full of educational material has left St Mary’s Catholic College Cairns bound for the Peter O’Connor School at Gerehu, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. The material is being donated by St Mary’s and also the Holy Cross Primary School in Trinity Park.

The freight will be paid for by the Peter O’Connor Foundation which is grateful for the donation.

In PNG, Pastor Mike Field was emailed by Harry Graepel who teaches at St Mary’s and asked would he be able to use 40 to 60 laptop computers which the college is discarding even though they are all working, just because they are four years old.

Pastor Mike replied: “Correct. That is a YES PLEASE, YES PLEASE! These would be fantastic for the School.”

The rest of the donation includes desks, chairs, filing cabinets a metal storage cabinet, shelving and books.

The chair of the Peter O’Connor Foundation, John Bottoms, said that the foundation had now provided freight on several occasions for material no longer need in Australian schools.

“These materials are deeply appreciated in PNG where students often have to sit on the floor and where libraries are scant or non-existent,” he said. “Without the payment of freight, most of the material would otherwise be discarded. The Peter O’Connor Baptist School, in a very disadvantaged area of Port Moresby has been a major beneficiary. The Peter O’Connor Foundation also pays for teachers’ salaries and helps disadvantaged children in PNG in other ways.

“The Peter O’Connor Foundation is pleased that it can deliver directly to the people in need, mainly through the Anglican, Baptist and Catholic Churches in PNG and the Ginigoada Foundation.”

Natalie Miekeljohn, a former student of Harry’s, who was back home on holiday from the University of Queensland, helped load the container and helped collecting the computers from Trinity Park.

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