Children's story to create interest in Papua New Guinea
Horsfield Bay resident Mr Peter Comerford has recently a children's adventure and survival story, suitable for 10-14 year olds, published in the United Kingdom.
"It is a story about Michael who travels to Papua New Guinea for a holiday on his uncle's copra plantation on an offshore island," he said.
"He is befriended by Natlik, his uncles house servant who teaches him how to spearfish and recognise stinging corals, poisonous plants and how to make a fire without matches.
"When Michael and his uncle fail to return home from a fishing trip, Natlik goes in search of them hoping to being them back safely."
Mr Comerford said he was trained as a teacher specifically to teach in Papua New Guinea when it was an Australian territory.
"My wife and I ended up spending a total of 15 years in Papua New Guinea and three of our children were born in Popondetta," he said.
"Although Papua New Guinea is our closest neighbour people generally know very little about the people and the culture.
"We spent our final six years on the island of Bougainville until we were forced to leave in 1990 due to the Bougainville crisis and my school was taken over by the defence force.
"After returning to Australia I continued teaching but also began writing about our experiences.
"I turned to writing stories geared towards upper primary and early secondary aged students.
"I hoped that my stories would create some interest in this fascinating country as well as providing some entertaining adventure and survival reading material for children.
"My aim is also to get some of these books into schools in Papua New Guinea."
Mr Comerford's book is entitled A Survival Story of Michael and Natlik, and is published by Austin Macauley in the UK.
It is available at The Book Shop Umina and online.
Mr Comerford said both he and his wife fell in love with the country, culture, jungle and the picturesque islands of Papua New Guinea.
"My wife and I and some of the children have made trips back to Bougainville, New Ireland and Popondetta with us.
"I will have another adventure story published towards the end of the year."
Media release, 14 Mar 2022
Peter Comeford, Horsfield Bay