Bougainville Education Futures: Kindle ereaders open up world of possibilities for kids on Bougainville

James

An Australian scheme to get more children on Bougainville PNG  reading, using kindles, is hoping to expand its aid project.

Colin Cowell is an Australian with links to Bougainville PNG going back to 1970 where he worked in many training and management roles

Over his life he’s been involved in a number of aid projects, both in Papua New Guinea and Australia, and one current project he wants to ramp up is Bookgainville.

Picture above; Colin and  James Tanis launching Bookgainville May 2014:  School founder and Ex-President of Bougainville James stated that after two weeks of the school using Kindles ” The donation of 5 kindles to our school will change the lives of our students and teachers forever

SEE James Tanis interview on You TUBE

Full Name of School: Nariana Elementary School: Metonasi Class B Region: Nagovisi, Via Panguna ,Central Bougainville No of Students: 50

Under this scheme donates kindles to schools on Bougainville.

Mr Cowell told Don Wiseman RADIO NZ Bookgainville came about when he was approached by the former president of Bougainville, James Tanis, who was studying at the ANU in Canberra, to help get books to children in the region.

COLIN COWELL: And I said ‘Oh James the shipping rates to Bougainville are huge’. I have a background in technology. I said there has to be an easier way, and that is when I came across kindles. Each of the small kindles – they can hold up to 1400 books, for an Australian value of $99. So it is very very good value.

DON WISEMAN: You started raising money to provide these kindles and you were providing just a number for schools and kids were handing them around?

CC: Yes I have made a number of trips – I am semi-retired so I made a number of trips to PNG. And we set up a base in Arawa and we have a large database there. We use the idea that was developed here in Australia by the indigenous communities to encourage reading and literacy. They are very effective. Because young people they really like reading off an i-pad and it really encourages them to read. On my first trip up there I tried the kindles and we had kids reading 24 hours a day, just to get that knowledge and so forth, because they have very limited access to books. And so it has been very successful in improving their literacy.

DW: There are many schools on Bougainville aren’t there. Just how many?

CC: About 350. The population of Bougainville is about 300,000 and obviously they are very small schools. On my first trip up there we actually established some schools. They can build a school for about a $1000 New Zealand dollars. So we actually built a few schools as well. They had nowhere to actually learn, so we have facilitated the schools and teachers and so forth.

DW: So how many of these kindles have you provided so far?

CC: We have put out about five kindles per school and there are about 11 schools we have completed so far, in the early stages. We have got some educationalists assisting us in assessing literacy levels and so forth and that will probably occur over the next couple of months and then we can take it to the next level.

When you consider that if you bought the Harry Potter book it might cost you $NZ30, if you get a thousand books, that is $30,000 worth of books on one kindle – you know what I mean. So there are a lot of repositories around the world where we can get free books. So it is very cheap to get the books into the schools.

DW: Do you load the books on before they go up?

CC: We do. We have a database, and it is open access, books that we use. We have a database in Arawa, like a library system and people can top up from that particular library system.

DW: As you say, you are planning this – how big do you think you can go?

CC: I think we could do 100 schools. We are looking at new technologies at the moment. In Africa there is a world-wide organisation, called World Reader, that is actually recycling old phones, and putting the technology on old phones and then loading up the books onto old phones. So there is a lot of modern technology we are looking at at the moment.

World Reader is concentrating on Africa but we are negotiating with them to say that ‘Papua New Guinea we really need some educational levels raised’, so there are all sort of opportunities.

We have done this out of the kindness of our hearts. I have had friends in Australia, teachers, friends throughout Australia who have donated these kindles.

Another thing, we have got to do the feasibility study now to evaluate the project, and I think when people see the results of the evaluation, the cost efficiencies of developing the system, I think we will get some good international aid support.

Pok-Pok1

September 2014

Ms Lillian Ahai, Former Principal of Sogeri National High School, a core member of E Reader Leadership group presents kindles to Uruna Primary, Pokpok Island on behalf of Bookgainville, witnessed by James Tanis the Founder.

Project contact

Colin Cowell (Project manager) Email: colincowellredcent@hotmail.com 

Tel Australia 0401 331 251

International: +61401 331 251

Follow us on TWITTER @bookgainville

Bougainville community support and vision puts Bougainville tourism on the world’s stage

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International tourism Buyers (travel agents and wholesalers) interested in sending visitors to Bougainville PNG have given the recent South Pacific Tourism Exchange (SPTE) 2015 and especially Bougainville as a future growing tourism destination the ‘thumbs-up’ after two-days of successful business-to-business meetings at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre .

Tour operators, hotel and accommodation providers as well as National Tourism Offices from 16 Pacific Island Countries converged into Melbourne with over 60 international buyers from the traditional source markets of Australia and New Zealand to the emerging long haul markets of the United States, China and Europe to conduct business and networking.

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Zhon Bosco Miriona, Managing Director of Bougainville Experience Tours for second time in the past year was able to represent Bougainville on the world stage supported by Colin Cowell an International media and tourism consultant with over 25 years’ experience marketing Indigenous tourism.

Top Photo Social media  : Online tour bookings site , Facebook ,@YesBougainville on Twitter and Bougainville Tourism INSTAGRAM are playing an important role in Bougainville Experience Tours  International Marketing

Second Photo Above : Developing partnerships with Wako Napusu Inbound operator Country Tour PNG and Asian operators above to bring in small groups for a 7 day Bougainville Tour Experience

Mr. Miriona said without the help of Bougainville small business and other sponsors and supporters  (see list below) I would not have been able to attend this important but expensive international marketing opportunity for Bougainville.

“Our fundraising in Arawa raised 5,270 kina and it really proved that a wide range of organisations and individuals understand the economic, cultural and social benefits  that international tourism can bring to Bougainville. Hopefully this new Government can also see that they need to develop a Bougainville Tourism Plan 2015-2025 to strategically invest in tourism infrastructure training and marketing “Mr. Miriona said

Mr Miriona stated SPTE 2015 was bigger than initially anticipated and the large number of buyers and sellers at this year’s event is indicative of the growing interest in the Pacific region’s only tourism exchange.

“The overwhelming response to SPTE 2015 from both the buyers and sellers has contributed to its success! Our PNG team worked especially hard to ensure that the quality of buyers from our international markets would add value to the exchange, especially for our regional member areas like Bougainville. The PNG Tourism Promotion Authority and Colin Cowell have been a fantastic support developing Bougainville tourism over the past few years. I am pleased to say that with all this support Bougainville does have a bright future” Mr. Miriona added.

Mr Miriona went on to say that the major problem that Bougainville cultural tourism has is that the Bougainville Government cannot guarantee funding or dates for the many festivals or events that occur each year throughout the island such as Mona and the Reeds Festival .

“Like other major cultural festivals throughout Papua New Guinea we need to lock in dates and funding five years ahead so that International buyers and cruise ships can plan and sell tours”

Mr Miriona went on to highlight some of the other international marketing that he and Mr Cowell did whilst in Melbourne

“This year SPTE 2015 extended an invitation to the international media that were in Melbourne for the Australian Tourism Exchange and I was able to do a number of radio interviews promoting Bougainville tourism

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Radio Australia Interview with Bruce Hill

Bougainville open and ready for tourism

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 Bougainville igat bikpela potensal long turis bisnis

Turis bisnis opereta long Bougainville Zhon Bosco Miriora i tok Bougainville wantaim olgeta hap blong Papua New Guinea igat bikpela potensal oa samting long divelopim sait long turis.

 With  pictured above with Zhon and Wako
Mr Miriona papa blong  Bougainville Experience Tours i tok ol klinpla environment, pasin tumbuna na ol pisin long ol bikbus inap pulim planti turis igo long Auttonomous rijan blong Bougainville.
Mr Miriona ibin stap long South Pacific Tourism Exchange sho emi bin kamap hia long Melbourne long wik igo pinis.
Planti turisam laen blong olgeta hap blong Pacific ibin stap long despla bung em Australia Tourism na South Pacific Tourism Organisation ibin ronim.
Mr Miriona itok gutpla environment emi nap helpim ol pipal i kisim moni nau na long bihaen taem.
Bisnis blong Mr Miriona i save stretim rot blong ol turis i go long ol ship na balus long go wokabaut long Bougainville.

Check out the website

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A BIG THANK YOU TO THE SPONSORS

List of Lodges, corporates and individuals who attended and donated for the fundraising for BET rep to attend the 2nd South Pacific Tourism Exchanges in Melbourne Australia.

NO. Names Amount
1 Poonang Nava Inn K600.00
2 Arawa Transit Lodge K300.00
3 Rising Sun K300.00
4 Gasa Lodge K300.00
5 Urunaa Island Lodge K300.00
6 Riverside Lodge K300.00
7 National Airport Corporation K100.00
8 PNG Ports Limited K300.00
9 Gold Dust Ltd K300.00
10 Eastrac K300.00
11 3 Rocks K300.00
12 Hon Member Nick Darku K300.00
13 Bougainville Earth Works K300.00
14 Kompaini Plant Hire K300.00
15 Jayberth K150.00
16 Lucy Sagoro K30.00
17 Vincent Simon Bus Service K200.00
18 Raymond Marai K300.00
19 Nigana Bus Service K100.00
20 Danny James K50.00
21 Lawrence Mattau K30.00
22 Joe Mennou K30.00
23 Gerard Tagussy K30.00
24 Tuvoro Service Station K50.00
Total 5,270.00

 

 

 

Bougainville Education News: Fundraising sports day in Panguna raises education funds for kindles

 

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“There are strong indications that the benefits of mobile reading like kindles are long-lasting and far-reaching, with the potential to improve literacy, increase education opportunities and change people’s lives for the better.

A revolution in reading is upon us…”

For now BookGainVille cannot afford to buy a kindle for every child but what we do afford to give every child here and now is the dream to have access to one

 James Tanis co-founder Bookgainville Education Revolution

The BookGainVille Cup Children’s Soccer kicked off last week at Kamex Children’s Field, Okangsira VA, Panguna District in Bougainville PNG

No uniforms, no boots and one soccer ball for both boys and girls.

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A humble beginning to a big dream to self-raise funds to buy kindles for every child in Bougainville schools.

Using e-readers (like the Amazon Kindle) and potentially recycled phones the BookGainVille project wants to provide Bougainville children and families access to hundreds of thousands of books, giving them an opportunity to change their lives.

In May 2014 the Kindle project was launched in Bougainville and 11 schools now have donated kindles ,the latest this month being the Guava School near Panguna (see picture below)

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The increasing ubiquity and diminishing costs of digital technology enabled BookGainville  to solve these problems in a simple and straight-forward way. Wherever possible, they will be building on digital platforms and mobile connectivity to make our books available to children and families who need them the most. To date they have been providing e-readers to schools in need through both sponsorships and sales.

In the first stage BookGainville has utilized Amazon Kindles that cost originally Aus$99.00 and can hold up to 1,400 books each. If you consider 1 hard copy of a book could cost say 35 Kina , that’s potentially 50,000 kina worth of books potentially on just one Kindle. Each school 250,000 kina of books

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BookGainVille will be actively curate books by Bougainville authors for our library. The more relevant and engaging a student’s first reads are, the more likely they are to continue learning and reading throughout their life

James Tanis continues to negotiate to ensure ABG adopts the kindle project for all Bougainville Schools . Recently Minister Michael Oni committed to funding kindles

The Bookgainville Cup and Kindles were donated by Colin Cowell, Simon Pentanu, Zhon Bosco and donors from PNG, Bougainville and International

Background to Bookgainville Education Project

In 2013 James Tanis the ex-President of Bougainville was studying at the Australian National  University and teamed up with Canberra based Colin Cowell a communications consultant (who had a 44 year  association with Bougainville)  to find a solution to the problem “that most Bougainville school children not have any books to read.”

James from the Nariana community (via Panguna) and his friend Simon Pentanu from Pokpok Island believed there were strong indications that the benefits of mobile reading technology could be long-lasting and far-reaching, with the potential to improve literacy, increase education opportunities  and change Bougainville students lives for the better

The need to improve literacy in Bougainville schools

According to UNESCO “Literacy is transformative: it increases earning potential, decreases inequality, improves health outcomes and breaks the cycle of poverty “.Yet there are still 740 million illiterate  people in this world and  in Bougainville there are many children of primary school age who lack basic reading and writing skills.

Books are necessary for the development of these skills, and still many schools in Bougainville have few or no books at all.

 The BookGainville education vision

BookGainVille Education project Leadership group will be the voice for

1.Students to do their best and achieve their best;

2.Parents to make education the first priority in the family;

3.Demand those in possession of arms to replace their guns with pens and papers;

4.Tell landowners to negotiate for educational scholarships instead of cash payouts as  compensation;

5.The political leaders to allocate the highest budget to education;

6.Reserve some resources now and leave some to our own children so that they will harvest when they acquire the technology,

7.Donors to advocate that education must form the highest portion of aid to   Papua New Guinea (Bougainville) and

8.Advocate for all groups that contribute to education and knowledge.

How can you donate a few dollars or kina ?

DONATE HERE

Bookgainville  Project on Bougainville PNG

 

Bougainville Tourism News : Does Bougainville have a 5 year tourism plan ?

 

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Above: Bougainville’s  tourism future ( 2015-2019 ) was recently represented for the first time at an International Tourism Expo in  Port Moresby (September 2014) by Zhon Bosco from Bougainville Experience Tours (website ) and his international support team Colin Cowell, Simon Pentanu and James Tanis.

But does Bougainville have a plan to take advantage of the South Pacific tourism  opportunities that may occur over the next 5 years ?

In this report from Radio New Zealand opportunities are explored that will effect Bougainville ?

The South Pacific Tourism Organisation is seeking donor and development partnerships to help it implement a five year regional tourism strategy.

Download the strategy and more information

The plan which was approved at the Pacific Tourism Ministers Council meeting last week in Nuku’alofa aims to guide the promotion and development of the industry in the 16 member countries of the SPTO.

Its Chief Executive, Ilisoni Vuidreketi, spoke with Koroi Hawkins about the contents of the new strategy.

ILISONI VUIDREKETI:  We are looking at how we can improve air access and route development, another issue is the cruise ship sector development and we are looking at also, how we can strengthen our marketing program to create more of that Pacific Island visibility in the long haul markets. The other areas that we have looked at is investment in Tourism and product development, research and statistics and of course sustainable tourism planning.

KOROI HAWKINS: In terms of the Cruise Shipping in the Pacific, why is this emerging now? What are the trends that we are seeing?

IV: Yea, we are seeing at the global level, the number of ships that are coming out of the docks, new ships, new cruise vessels, its increasing every year and the ships are getting bigger and bigger. We have cruise liners coming into the Pacific that carry up to 2,000 passengers or 500, 300 for the smaller vessels. No we are looking at ships that are having capacity of up to 4,000 passengers. Now that is certainly something that we cannot accommodate here in the Pacific. But we are looking at the redeployment of the middle sized ships to the other parts of the world and also the trend that we have seen for cruise liners to be looking for new destinations.

boat Of Arawa

Cruise ship of Pok Pok Island recently

KH: In terms of funding the Pacific Tourism Strategy, where is the money coming from and how much is it?

IV: Sorry I don’t have that figure right now with me. But the programme sets out it is very clear we will certainly be needing the support of development partners. And so the funding that we are looking for is firstly from the contribution of our member governments, which is quite limited when we come to think about this, this big plans for the Pacific. So we are looking at other development partners. That is why we spoke with New Zealand as one of the best options. Also we will be looking at other countries like, perhaps Australia, China and others who may want to be part of this. We are also looking at other donor agencies like the European Union to also pitch in. So it is a collective effort with those, key stakeholders that we have identified.

Bougainville Education News :Book-Gain-Ville boosts access to books with e-reader project

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“The kindles has changed the lives of our teachers and students forever “

James Tanis Ex-President of Bougainville and founder of Narinai Elementary School in the Panguna District.

Book-Gain-Ville boosts access to literature with e-reader project

Originally published http://www.bougainville24.com/

Our thanks to Leonard Fong Roka for support and promotion of Bookgainville

An Australian man, so affected by a trip to bring e-readers to students in a remote Panguna village, has launched an initiative to improve literacy throughout Bougainville.

Colin Cowell started the Book-Gain-Ville project in Australia with the support and guidance of the Indigenous Reading Project.

Cowell’s original visit with 20 kindles was to the Narinai Elementary School in the Panguna District, the home of former Bougainville president Mr. James Tanis. Here the Book-Gain-Ville project was launched and welcomed to the community with dancing, singing, speeches and slaughtering of two pigs to mark the importance of the occasion.

“Travelling around I saw broader need across the whole island, so we have added ten more sites for trial of the Book-Gain-Ville initiative,” Mr Cowell said.

“By the end of June 2014 we hope to have over fifty kindles in ten pilot schools and over the next few years I would like to see over one thousand kindles in Bougainville schools with the support of all the local level governments.”

Cowell, who hails from Canberra, Australia, has 24 years of experience working with and training Aboriginal communities across Australia and stated that the key to the Book-Gain-Ville project is sustainability.

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“We now have in place at the Arawa Women’s Training Centre the support technology and trained staff to take this project forward in years to come,” Cowell said.

“Guiding this project on the ground is a leadership group lead by James Tanis and group of teachers and IT volunteers.”

“The Kindles with up to 1400 books inside cost $99.00 and a lot of communities including the pilot sites have already begun fundraising to buy extra kindle on top of our donations.”

Update 11 July 2014

We are packing another 40 Kindles in Canberra to send to Bougainville on Monday 14 July

kindles

Colin Cowell is no stranger to Bougainville having lived there some 40 years ago and return he spent the whole month of May travelling the length and breadth of the island.

He met his old friends like Linus kunokong from Buin and visited cultural shows in Siwai, South Bougainville; visited tourism development sites across the island and even participated in the Bougainville Remembrance Day, May 17, in Arawa.

He will be returning soon to Bougainville with more kindles In September after shipping in July (see above)

More information about the project is available at www.bookgainville.com

 

 

Bookgainville  Project on Bougainville PNG