7.5 magnitude earthquake on 26 February 2018


Your action through ALWS 


Update: 6 April 2018

This earthquake response is supported by the Australian Government in partnership with the Government of Papua New Guinea.


$1.5 million Australian Government Grant

In Week 1 of April, ALWS received news from the Australian Government of a $1.5 million aid grant to help survivors of the 26 February earthquake in PNG.

The grant is implemented through the CAN-DO network of Australian churches of many denominations.

3 Phase Action Plan


Churches already delivering food, kitchen kits, shelter supplies and hygiene resources

PHASE 1: EMERGENCY 1 – 4 months

Distribute food and non-food items. Support protection, conflict resolution and psychosocial care (ongoing). NB: items procured locally wherever possible.

PHASE 2: EARLY RECOVERY 4 – 8 months

Semi-permanent reconstruction – houses, latrines, schools, infrastructure. Community engaged in identifying type of shelter most appropriate.

PHASE 3: RECOVERY 8 – 12 months

Permanent reconstruction.


NB: The Australian Government is funding Phase 1 with $1.5 million. We need to work together to raise the money for Phases 2 & 3.  DONATE NOW


Who we will help together

  • 37,500 people in 7,500 hardest hit households
  • Target most vulnerable, including elderly, children, people with disabilities, female-headed households

Our targeted action

  • 3 x 15 litre water containers per Household
  • 2 x Hygiene Kits per Household
  • Hygiene and sanitation training
  • 392 Households (1,960 people) receive Shelter Kits

Where people will be helped

  • Hela Province
  • Southern Highlands Province



Why this action is highest priority

The 7.5 magnitude earthquake on 26 February, and aftershocks, is estimated to have affected 544,000 people. 270,000 people are in immediate need.

Shelter – people are living in damaged homes / makeshift shelters / with clan members. Many temporary shelters are at risk of collapse if there are more after-shocks.

Water – water-tanks destroyed, and creeks, wells and rivers polluted. In some areas, water is oily.

Sanitation – toilets destroyed. People resorting to open defecation, with consequent severe risk of disease.


Who delivers our earthquake aid

Churches are recognised for their ability to deliver aid to remote communities in PNG.

Our ALWS team is working with churches of other denominations from the CAN-DO network here in Australia, and with churches in PNG. Churches include:

  • Lutheran
  • Catholic
  • Anglican
  • Baptist
  • Adventist
  • Uniting
  • The Salvation Army





Updated: 14 March 2018




 The UN reports 150,000 people have been impacted, with nearly half of those ‘extremely vulnerable’.

 Media reports fear up to 100 people have been killed.

Assessments from ALWS partners report 40% of houses damaged or destroyed in Mendi.  


The ALWS team has been working on our emergency response since immediately after the earthquake happened.

At this stage, we have committed $20,000 in emergency aid.


It is likely the most urgent needs will include:

  • Clean water: rainwater tanks destroyed, fresh water supplies muddied by landslides
  •  Shelter: repair and rebuild damaged houses
  •  Sanitation: always a critical need in disasters like earthquakes
  •  Food: emergency supplies now, plus replace any damaged crops
  •  Psycho-social support: people may need support recovering from trauma

An ALWS-supported Rapid Assessment Team has responsibility to visit the Mendi region to assess impact on households (including 500 Lutheran).



In PNG, the Government (and also the Australian Government) recognise churches as one of the most effective ways to reach communities.

Therefore, your ALWS emergency aid will be delivered through a coordinated response from church agencies including:

* Lutheran (ELC-PNG)

* Catholic

* Baptist

* United

* The Salvation Army

* Anglican

* Adventist


IMPORTANT: ALWS already partners with ELC-PNG, through the Church Partnership Program, to deliver development support worth more than $700,000 each year.


Australian church agencies action is co-ordinated through the CAN-DO network. ALWS is a member. Other churches include Catholic, Anglican, Baptist, Uniting and Adventist.

In this spirit of working together comes a message from the PNG Council of Churches:


“Natural disasters deeply impact us.


People often feel helpless or overwhelmed

in the wake of their destruction.


It can be tough to know how to cope,

or how to help someone who has experienced devastating loss.


We must come together and support each other.”






In PNG, learning to read and write is an answer to prayer!

Generously supported by the Australian Government through DFAT, our Church partnership Program in PNG strengthens the Lutheran Church capacity to improve the livelihoods of local people. Like Nakusa Andrew, aged 34 years.

In remote and isolated PNG villages , children are not sent to schools due to long distances from home and school. Another factor is the non-availability of marketing avenue to earn revenue to pay school fees, especially when parents having more than 4 children attending school at the same time.  Nakusa is one of the many who had no experience in any form of education until 2009 when she was rescued through Adult Literacy Class funded by CPP.

Here Nakusa shares her story ...

"Before Adult Literacy Class, I was in a total darkness. Fear, shame and sorrow were my life. I don’t attend youth and women meetings because of my illiteracy. Furthermore, I hardly participate in any form of small income earning activities except the house keeping jobs.

"Flower gardening, arranging and selling were part of my job under my employer’s supervision. It was during that period of time, I carefully learnt and mastered all flower production skills.

"After graduating from the Literacy class in 2009 at the age of 32 with 2 children. I felt light entering whole of me and enlightening my soul. I knew for sure, there’s more to life than housekeeping jobs. After discovering my skills and abilities, I left the housekeeping job and I began to grow and sell flowers and also sell cooked fresh garden foods to employees of companies along the Highlands highway.

"Because I am able to read and write, I confidently do my marketing and began to pay for household food and clothes and school accessories for my child. Health expenses were also taken care of by me. My husband was unemployed that time so I was the bread winner for 2 solid years.

"If CPP was not here, I would have been out there in the darkness of illiteracy. I thank God for the great help he has given through Lutheran Church both PNG and Australia and currently ADRA PNG."

Action Idea:
Help kids in South Sudan learn to read and write. Your Learning Kit can provide writing books and pens. Learning Pack - just $6 

Country: PNG

Where: Throughout PNG

What: Institutional Strengthening Program


Through ALWS, you continue to work with the Evangelical Lutheran Church of PNG to improve its capacity to deliver effective education, health and development services in a number of provinces. Assistance includes workshops and trainings on capacity building in areas such as governance, general and financial management, and health education.

This work is funded by DFAT under the Church Partnership Program involving seven PNG denominations and their Australian partners.