Tutuwe Women’s President (right) officially handing over the bus to the school principal (left)

A primary school in the North Fly District of Western Province was the proud recipient of a new school bus thanks to a local women and children association.

The St. Leo Matkomnai Primary School, located a few kilometers from Kiunga, received the new 25-seater bus on 18 June from the Tutuwe Ara Women and Children Association.

The association is one of 8 Women and Children Associations in the CMCA region including the Ok Tedi Mine Village Women and Children’s Association in the Star Mountains.

The bus, which cost K173, 256, will assist transport students, some of whom walk about 10 kilometers every day to attend classes.

Headmistress Mrs. Winnie Iwik in thanking the association and Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF), said the bus will also help the school with its administrative purposes and school excursions.

“When I travel on public PMV, I see children walking. I feel very sad for them. My heart cries for them but how can I help, so thank you Tutuwe Ara Women Children Association for donating the bus,’’ she said.

The primary school is centrally located in Matkomnai village, with elementary schools in nearby villages and surrounding communities, with increasing student enrollment each year.

The school has 310 students and 12 staff members, teaching classes from Grade 3 to Grade 8 respectively. Mrs. Iwik said the school is expecting increased student numbers next year due to more students attending the elementary schools in the surrounding communities.

OTDF assisted the association to purchase and the transport the bus from Port Moresby.