An Australian volunteer who was doing whatever volunteers do in PNG.
I was there for 2 years until Dec 2005 .. I hope I made the most of it.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

International Radio Star, Moi?

So far this week has been full of pleasant surprises. Apart from the slight worry about the weekend, in other news that has come my way this has been one of best weeks I have had been since being here (it would take a lot to top the Manus week though).

On Tuesday I received an e-mail from a guy I met while at the Brisbane conference in December. He tells me he is coming to PNG in a few weeks and wants to meet me to see what we are up to. He is a bit of a wealthy philanthropists and interestingly an ex-kiap (patrol officer) from the old days of PNG. So part of his trip is to return to old stomping grounds and the other is to look into suitable ventures to start up. His vision is of creating an ICT Managers School (ICT is Information Communication Technologies - a big part of what I do), and that would slot in nicely in what I am currently working on - Telecentres (Internet café and some) set up in a few centres.

So my philanthropic mate will be here and will get to chat to me and my boss and hopefully we can nut something out, a collaborative effort. In looking at his previous ventures it could be a huge boon - check out and

The positive e-mails flowing back and forth between me and him were making my day and then yesterday I got asked "Do you want to go to Rabaul next week, leaving on Tuesday, coming back on Saturday?". Pause for desired effect "ummm ... yeah that sounds good", break into grin.

Of course it is for 'work', though my work will be basically observing and looking at the facilities of our study centre there, which I would like to say is tough, but it ain't. I still think these type of trips are a rort, especially when you get paid a per-de-em, but how can I say no to this. I haven't been Rabaul before and it was always on the must do's. Perhaps I will even get time to climb one of the volcanos.

Then on top of that I get an e-mail yesterday afternoon from AVI asking me if I would like to appear on Radio Australia on their In The Loop program, which gets broadcast to the Pacific Islands, PNG and Timor. They would like me to appear infrequently in 10 minute segments discussing what I do, why am I here, plug my organisation, talk about what it means to be a volunteer, and give AVI a plug. I replied this morning, "sure why not" he says nonchalantly.

So there you go not such a bad week all round and it is not even finished yet.