COMMUNITY DRIVEN EARTHQUAKE RESILIENCE FOR KUTUBU KUNDU & DIGASO FESTIVAL LEADING COMMUNITIES

"This year’s festival will be an opportunity for the community to generate income and purchase items needed for survival."

Community leaders from the Kikori basin have decided to host the annual Kutubu Kundu & Digaso Festival to contribute to the rebuilding process of their communities after the 7.5 magnitude earthquake destroyed their homes, gardens and loved ones on February 26, 2018.

“We, the Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival steering committee, are committed to maintain this year’s festival despite the earthquake disaster that has affected most of our families. Although, we have lost 11 lives and most of our homes and gardens destroyed, we will continue to maintain our cultural identity because it reflects who we are as a people. We have suffered together and now we will work together to rebuild our lives. We want to be a model community that’s is resilient despite the tragedy we have faced. This year’s festival will be an opportunity for the community to generate income and purchase items needed for survival. I thank the Advancing PNG: Women Leaders Network Inc (APNG: WLN) for re-donating the Milne Bay Humanitarian Appeal donation of K21, 640.00 in kind towards our festival communities’ restoration efforts. This is the first support to come in kind and we look forward to others who will do likewise. After the festival this year, the Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival with the Kutubu Disaster Relief Committee will work together to do fundraising to rebuild our communities,” says Mr. James Irimaru, Chairman of the Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival.

The Milne Bay Humanitarian Appeal originally donated the K21,640.00 to the NGO Advancing PNG: Women Leaders Network (APNG: WLN) through its PNG Earthquake Disaster Relief Appeal of which the Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival was a key partner. Seeing the communities’ resilience to host the festival despite their challenges prompted APNG: WLN to give the K21,640.00 donation to support this initiative. The Milne Bay Humanitarian Appeal supports this donation by APNG: WLN;

“We are happy that APNG: WLN has taken this approach to utilize our donations to support the communities who are resilient and intact in sustaining their livelihoods despite the earthquake. People need people in times of disaster and partnering like this is rewarding for us. Similar groups and organizations must work together to support this type of initiatives, said Goini Loko Chairperson of the Milne Bay Humanitarian Appeal.

The Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival Committee will host a fundraising dinner in Port Moresby at Holiday Inn on the 17th of August 2018. Tickets are selling at K500.00 per seat and K5, 000.00 for a table of ten seats. All proceedings will go to host the 8th Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival from the 21st - 23rd of September 2018 in Kutubu, Southern Highlands Province.

The Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival Committee is excited to host the 08th annual festival with the theme “Yumi mas kirapim bek yumi yet”. More than 40 earthquake impacted communities located in the

Kikori basin will come together to celebrate their cultural heritage and also share their experiences,

knowledge and ideas for restoration of their own communities after the 7.5 magnitude earthquake. The

immediate action by the local communities to host this year’s festival shows the adaption to recovery

process which can contribute to long term resiliency and this is where it begins, says Saina Jeffrey

Philyara Organizer of the Kutubu Kundu and Digaso Festival.

MEDIA RELEASE
June 18, 2018