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First two weeks of the AidOcean Mission 2023 in collaboration with Olgeta.

The night of the 17th of October, Golden Dawn arrived in Kavieng from Port Moresby a journey of nearly 900 nm and was warmly welcomed in a traditional manner by the Malagan People of New Ireland. The region of the expedition would be to the north of Kavieng and concentrate on the circumference of New Hanover, also know as Lovengai.

The first two weeks of the AidOcean 2023 Expedition concentrated in the region of Puas to Taskul as shown on the image.

One of the main purposes of the program was to carry out the routine immunization of children under 5, for most of the first two weeks many of the vaccines were not supplied to the New Ireland Provincial Health Authority, we hope future programs better organization will mean more efficient use of our services.

The vaccines include:

• PENTA ( Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenzae type b)

• M/R Measles & Rubella

• Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV)

• Inactivated Poliovirus Vaccine (IPV)

• Pneumococcal conjugate Vaccine (PCV)

• BCG (Bacillus Calmette-Guérin) against tuberculosis

• Tetanus

The routine medecine includes :

• Vitamin A

• Albendazole

While AidOcean could not perform 100% with the lack of vaccines much work was carried out, checking heath records was one of them. What was noticed… many more children than recorded in dire need of Immunization, Puas region alone over 1000?

AidOcean made some exploratory expeditions up some river systems and found there were a number of hamlets where there were children 3 years of age and under, which are not even recorded in health records.

Other health services carried out by the volenteers

3 Women Obstetric consultations, 20 control pregnancy consultations, 37 Birth control implants and 10 removals

50 Medical Consultations and 2 emergency surgeries carried out. Two of which were carried out at night in banana boats alongside Golden Dawn.

400 eye tests and 270 pairs of glasses given out

187 Dental consultations by the local dentist from NIPHA and 55 tooth extractions

19 villages covered in Puas Region of New Hanover.

20 Schools visited and 100 books given out supplied from Buks Bilong Pikinini

Four Agroforestry projects were worked on, it’s likely we will do more of these educational sessions in years to come as it will help the villages to maintain gardens and not continue slash and burn techniques and hence preserve the natural habitat and environment.

What has been abundantly evident to the AidOcean team is toilets and where villages are toileting is a major health issue and contributing to health issues and possible spread of diseases such as polio. Either too close to water ways or in some cases using the waterways as toilets.

The team have decided that here too a major change and education is needed to make pit toilets and this too will be a priority moving forward. Bambooloo has become the famous catch phrase.

Water quality checks have been carried out and educational’s on making filters to adjust the ph as well as how to make filters with charcol to improve drinking water quality.

The Golden Dawn returned to Kavieng to change out the Volunteers from AidOcean as well as the Health Workers from New Ireland Provincial Health Authority.

The mission will continue over the next month with more updates to follow.

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