No Roads Expeditions Foundations (Aust) Ltd (NREF) charter - "To work in a spirit of collaboration and undertake projects in remote areas that improve the lives of disadvantaged people by building community".
Our primary work has been to inject into remote areas of PNG health and education professionals to support local health / education workers and, where appropriate, provide resources in a sustainable manner to ensure that we are building capacity and not replacing it.
At all times NREF partner with local authorities, DFAT and other NGOs in an effort to collaborate and ensure the effective use of all resources.
Many smaller projects have been delivered such as delivering basic targeted First Aid Training to Village Birth Assistants and Village Health Volunteers in remote areas. NREF has also partnered with PNG Eye-care to deliver refractionist services and worked with The Children First Foundation to identify children in urgent need of surgical intervention and facilitate their travel to Australia.
No Roads Health was formed in 2012 when Stewart Kreltszheim, an Australian experienced No Roads Expeditions Kokoda Track Guide, identified a desperate need for improved health care for the people living on the Kokoda track.
Stewarts passion to help our closest neighbours who assisted our diggers during the Kokoda campaign occured with the support and logistical backing of the No Roads Expeditions company. Stewart sought the help of a nurse clinician, Jo Bergman, to assist with co-ordinating and developing a program based on the following mission - To work in a spirit of collaboration and undertake projects in remote areas that improve the lives of disadvantaged people by building community capacity.
The project initially began delivering mentoring and training to the Health Care Workers along the Kokoda Track, and moved onto the Northern Beaches region around Tufi. The project continues to grow in strength, delivering training, and infrastructure projects to build strength in the communitites that we visit.
The No Roads Health program delivers health expeditions to the Tufi Region each year, and has been instrumental in building the capacity of Health Care Workers and Village Health Volunteers through ongoing training programs.
Recognising the importance of partnerships, No Roads Health continues to work in partnership with other NGOs to ensure that the communities receive much needed support.
The idea of an education specific trek to assist the teachers in the schools along the Kokoda Track arose from No Roads Expedition guide Dan Hogarth. In 2012, after witnessing an emergency in a remote village, Dan realised just how isolated these communities were and started to think about what could be done to assist them. He thought about how he could utilise his strengths and his education background to assist those living in the remote communities and give them a better opportunity in life.
Dan witnessed first hand the urgent need for support in schools, where there were minimal teachers, poor facilities, and growing numbers of enrollments. This is a region that’s a far cry from what we know in Australia. PNG has educational statistics ranked amongst the worst in the world
● Less than 2% of students that begin Grade 1 go on to complete Year 12
● 29% of children in PNG are not enrolled in primary school
● Only 23% of the rural population enrol in secondary education
● 38% of PNG’s population over the age of 8 cannot read or write
No Roads Education are working with teachers in remote communities to improve the standard of education by delivering teams of volunteer teachers to assist with professional development, mentoring and support of teachers working in remote schools, as well as assisting with the supply of resources and other projects to improve education facilities. We believe that by assisting with professional development programs, the standard of teaching can be enhanced and further sustained, benefiting the people in remote communities by developing pathways for an improved future for those really in need of it.
Professional development is focused on Literacy, Numeracy, and other key learning areas specific to identified needs. Our teams provide targeted professional development to local teachers and work with students in schools at the same time. Ongoing support of qualified teachers posted in remote areas is important to ensure teachers are up to date with best practice, and are well equipped to provide high level outcomes for their students.
No Roads Education also develop projects to improve the supply of resources to remote areas so that the teachers are well equiped to continue educating students in facilities that are more conducive to learning.
Chin state is home to around 500,000 indigenous Chins in the remote mountain ranges of north western Myanmar (formerly Burma). Myanmar is one of the least developed countries in the world and the Chin state is the poorest region in the country, with minimal infrastructure, natural resources and limited economic opportunities.
Those living in the targeted area of Chin State are primarily subsistence farmers and do not have the necessary finances and means to travel to the main cities to access health services. There is also a high level of illiteracy, which results in the inability to remotely address and diagnose required care. Famine is a constant problem, as farms no longer produce adequate food due to climate change, soil exhaustion and the lack of viable farmland. Subsistent farmers, the Chin people rely on rotational, slash-and-burn farming for livelihood.
In November, 2018, Andrew and Sue Grasby travelled to Myanmar with the assistance of the Hakha Chin Community based in Yangon, and carried out a sanctioned health research project in the Sentung mountain region of Chin State. They quickly realised that the villagers in the target regions were in urgent need of assistance.
Following this trip, Sue travelled back to Chin State in April 2019 to continue the good will established, and focused on setting up the foundations for our health model of training health volunteers and birth assistants in the villages. This was with a view for health teams to attend in the future to continue the training, and also provide clinical assistance as per the PNG East Coast model.
The primary objective over time is to train and assist local Village Health Volunteers and Birth Assistants, and supply basic first aid supplies and medicines. It is intended that eventually the villages will have trained local health resources to attend to their community health issues at a local level.
A further expedition in November 2019 also investigated measures that could be implemented to assist with installing water pumps and irrigation systems to assist with crop management. This project will revolutionise the current primitive farming practices and will be pioneering technology into these remote and isolated communities for the first time. Upon completion, this blueprint can be rolled out to other agricultural areas in Myanmar experiencing similar water shortage challenges.
It's always great to hear from people who have good quality education and health supplies that they would like to donate for use in PNG or other countries that we visit. While we love everyones generosity and enthusiasm, it's often a costly process for us to transfer donated goods. For this reason, much consideration goes into resources that we do deliver.
One important thing to consider when donating items to assist others is how useful is the item being donated?
If your school or business has bulk items that they would like to donate, we'd love to hear from you. Our education team collect items for schools which include good quality
For those who have items to donate, we're happy to hear from you. We do ask that you consider raising the funds to assist with freight charges, so that the money we raise continues to be used for the projects we are currently working on. Contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our team will be in touch.
The easiest way to help is to donate to one of our projects by following the links on our home page.
NREF are working on many projects that assist the local communities in which we visit. Any amount raised is used on the ground to invest in local communities and build capacity. Your one-off donation provides communities in PNG with access to healthcare, education and infrastructure improvements.
All donations in Australia are tax-deductible. You will receive a tax receipt once your donation is complete.
There have been some amazing people who have raised funds to help with specific projects in the areas where we work. These funds have been used for infrastructure projects, and for the supply of resources.
While we normally encourage people to donate directly to our projects, we appreciate the generosity of friends who like to raise funds at events they are hosting. There are some rules around fundraising and the use of our brand, but don't let that stop you from achieving your wish of raising funds to help others. Drop us a line with your ideas and we will support you wherever we can.
Absolutely! While we appreciate the generosity of people who donate directly to our projects, we also understand that some people like to receive something for their donation. We have come up with a few ways that you can support our projects without making a direct donation. Links to place orders are attached.
Chin Life-Changing Candles: All proceeds from the purchase of Chin Life-Changing Candles go directly to NREF projects in Chin State, Myanmar. These candles make a wonderful gift for yourself or for others, and smell even better when you know that the profits are assisting the remote communities in Myanmar.
Buller Wines: Our Education team are currently raising funds to provide professional development to the teachers in Tufi in PNG. $40 from every box of wine ordered will be donated to this project. What better way to enjoy a bottle of wine with friends, than knowing you have contributed to a project with your purchase. When ordering wine, enter the promo code NREF to receive a discount.
Student Packs: You can also help by purchasing a student pack with much needed school supplies for children living in remote areas of PNG. Our Student Pack project has seen the delivery of over 400 student packs to the students in remote schools along the Kokoda Track. For $30, we'll deliver the pack with much needed school supplies for you, and you can sit back and smile and know that you contributed to a childs education. What better gift to give.
No Roads Foundation are continuing to develop sustainable professional development programs that will benefit those in the regions we visit.
We are looking for education and health professionals with specific skills sets that will enable us to deliver high quality training programs that embed knowledge through professional development and mentoring.
Interested in participating? Why don't you contact us at email@example.com or follow the links on our expeditions page.
When considering joining any overseas expedition as a volunteer, a common question that people ask themselves is "do I have the right skills to be of any help?" The majority of our volunteers are professionals with health or education qualifications, who all share our goal - to work in a spirit of collaboration and undertake projects in remote areas that improve the lives of disadvantaged people by building community capacity. But they are not the only qualifications that are needed.
NREF have many projects where we require the expertise of others to help see our projects to completion. We like to think that everyone has something to give to help us achieve our objectives, as long as you keep a few things in mind. Regardless of your qualifications, if you have a desire to help, an open mind, and the ability to adapt to any situation, we'd love to hear from you. Why not contact us firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our team can answer the questions you have.
We know that the areas in which we work are a safe and rewarding experience. But traveling to foreign countries and remote areas always raises the question of how safe we really are. Regardless of reports, there are no head hunters, wild natives in grass skirts, dangerous animals or poison ivy. However, with the remote environment, there will always be a risk to safety and potential for injury.
NREF have developed and implemented a range of innovative risk mitigation procedures that address every eventuality that we believe could occur while working in remote areas. Our operations team monitor the security level within PNG and other countries we visit, ensuring that alerts are monitored closely, along with essential on the ground knowledge from our teams. These situations are however very rare.
The remote areas that NREF visit are very different to what we know in Australia. Many of the regions have limited facilities and minimal resources, a far cry from what we know, with no electricity, limited resources, minimal opportunities and educational and health statistics ranked amongst the worst in the world
Due to the inaccessible terrain, modern conveniences are likely to never reach these areas, but that's all part of the amazing life changing adventure that our teams experience. After all, if it was like home, we wouldn't be there helping to build community capacity would we?
Our expeditions visit small villages in remote regions, traveling by plane, boat or foot to reach our destination. There are no luxurious five star hotels, but there are pristine, isolated villages that you back in time to a simple life of self subsistence.
Imagine having time with others without modern technology to interrupt your conversations. No television, internet or mobile phones to distract you. People coming together to achieve a goal, work together as a close team, encourage and learn from each other.
Our expeditions allows you to see first-hand how these tightly knit communities function. Why not come and see for yourself. You'll be amazed at what you discover.