AVI launches North Pacific program
14 June 2012
June marks an important month for Australian Volunteers International (AVI) as they open the doors to a new office in Pohnpei in the North Pacific and welcome the first of many international volunteers to begin working with local communities in this region.
The AVI expansion, supported by the Australian Government – AusAID, will see volunteers working with communities in the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and Palau. This aims to address the issues of local skills shortages in priority areas identified in the Partnership for Development between the Australian Government and the Governments of these North Pacific countries.
The first AVID volunteers to arrive in June will consist of three South Australian residents; Wally Stewart who will soon begin his plumber trainer assignment at the Majuro Water Sewer Company, Soe Myint who will work as an electrician on Ebeye Island at Kwajalein Atoll Joint Utility Resource, and Elissa McKenzie who will begin working as an administrator for the Ministry of Health in Palau.
In September AVI will also welcome Queensland residents Sian and her partner Dougal Nivison and their three children, to Kosrae in FSM. During their two year assignment Sian will volunteer for the Office of Overseas Development Assistance in Tofol.
AVI’s In-country Manager, Annie Himmelsteib, said the new office in the FSM is an exciting development for AVI and the countries of the North Pacific.
“We are thrilled to open AVI’s North Pacific office. This expansion highlights the Australian Government’s commitment to the Pacific Partnerships for Development and AVI’s pledge to support the Governments of RMI, FSM and Palau to respond to the Millennium Development Goal targets,” she said.
“We are looking forward to meeting each of the volunteers and know their contributions will be well received by the local communities. Their efforts will promote increased ‘know how’, reciprocal learning and contribute to the sustainability of small Pacific nations.
“In the near future we will also be looking to fill a number of positions in the North Pacific region including a vocational education course development mentor in agriculture and animal husbandry, a distribution and renewable energy technician, a water operations and maintenance technician, and a power distribution technician trainer.”
Through the AVID program, an Australian Government AusAID initiative, all volunteers receive financial support, including airfares, visas, accommodation, a living allowance, insurance, and pre-departure training, in-country and post-assignment support.
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For further information on the North Pacific see vist the RMI, Palau or FSM country pages.
For information on the AVID program see www.ausaid.gov.au/volunteer
For all other information please contact:
Annie Himmelsteib AVI North Pacific Manager
Phone: +691 320 -3890