Australian Rugby League team in Caritas goodwill visit to PNG
The Junior Kangaroos Rugby League Team recently played a two game series against Papua New Guinea in Darwin and Port Moresby.
Following the game in Port Moresby on 19 October, two Junior Kangaroos extended their stay in Papua New Guinea to visit some development projects funded by Caritas Australia. They were captain Greg Bird from Cronulla and Ryan Hoffman from Melbourne Storm.
It distributes around $14 million worth of funds throughout the world for aid and development each year. It raises funds through Project Compassion, the fundraising activity held each year during Lent.
The aim of this trip was to use the immense popularity of rugby league to highlight Caritas Australia's development work with PNG communities.
Ryan and Greg visited schools in Rabaul and Madang where they conducted coaching clinics and had the opportunity to meet excited students.
"Even though the schools had no electricity and very few resources the kids seemed to be really happy," said Greg Bird.
The players also visited St Mary's Hospital in Rabaul where Caritas supports a successful Women's Health Program. They spent the afternoon meeting staff and patients and proved to be a huge hit in the Children's Ward.
"I've never experienced anything like it" said Ryan "I can't fault the PNG people, they can't do enough for you. Everyone we've met has just been so happy to see us".
Junior Kangaroos pip PNG at the death (ABC Sport)
PNG Presidents XIII defeats Junior Kangaroos (Papua New Guinea Rugby League)
Cronulla Sharks | Greg Bird
Melbourne Storm | Ryan Hoffman
4 Nov 2003