Manus Island 2013 – my experiences, pt 1

In 2013, myself and 5 other cadets from Catherine Booth College, along with three staff, went to Manus Island, PNG, as part of our training, to work as part of The Salvation Army’s Humanitarian team working in the Manus Island Regional Processing Centre. Four years on, I’ve decided to share my diary from that experience. Names have been changed, and I acknowledge that the centre has changed a lot since then, but it is my hope that this will share a bit of light into how our government is treating Asylum Seekers.

leaving-for-manus6 February 2013. Left today. Flight to Carins, where we’ll stay over night, before an early flight to Port Moresby. When we got to the airport (in Melbourne), we read that there had been a Tsunami alert for PNG after an earthquake in the Solomon Islands. Thankfully cancelled by the time we got off the flight.

God a short call to Liesl in before bed. Annabelle came looking for me after childcare. She was sad I wasn’t there. But she did enjoy the video of me reading her story.

She was also playing Peekaboo with Granny via Facetime.

I’m going to miss so much this month, but I’m going to do so much as well.

Mentally – I’m ok, miss Liesl and Annabelle a bit. Will be tougher when I can’t contact them as readily.

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Author: Ben Clapton

I'm an Officer in The Salvation Army, currently appointed with my wife as Corps Officers at the Rochester Corps in country Victoria (20 minutes out of Echuca). I play violin and guitar, amongst many others, and love golf and running.

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