Documentary Raises Hope for PNG Orphans
8 June 2012 at 7:06 pm
A documentary has been launched in Melbourne to raise funds and awareness for orphans affected by HIV/AIDS in Papua New Guinea.
Directed by Australian filmmaker Kasimir Burgess, the 12-minute documentary Hope for Life is a project of the Asia Pacific Business Coalition on Aids (APBCA).
APBCA chief executive Stephen Grant said “in the Asia Pacific region nearly five million people are living with HIV.” In Papua New Guinea, he added, over 60,000 people have HIV.
The funds raised from the documentary and ensuing campaign will go towards tackling the “HIV epidemic threatening to wind back economic and social development in the Asia Pacific,” Grant said.
“The traditional structures in PNG that cared for orphans are struggling to support the growing number of children left behind."
APBCA Program Manager, Amanda Allen-Toland, said the documentary aims to raise awareness and resources for the Serendipity Education Endowment Fund – which channels money to the Serendipity program on the ground in Papua New Guinea.
The business community has thrown its support behind the project.
ANZ and Ansell each pledged $10,000 after the documentary launch and pharmaceuticals company Janssen has pledged $3,000, according to Allen-Toland.
The Serendipity program assists approximately 200 Papua New Guinean children affected by HIV/AIDS to complete their education.
The Parliamentary Secretary for Pacific Island Affairs, Richard Marles, launched the documentary and fundraising campaign on Wednesday 6 June at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne.
APBCA, a network of business coalitions, is hoping to turn the documentary Hope for Life into a longer ‘feature length’ version that might attract a wider audience.
Allen-Toland said the next stage of the campaign will be held later this year in PNG's capital Port Moresby, where APBCA has teamed up with Nasfund – a large PNG superannnuation fund.
APBCA is supported by AusAID and partners in the business community.