Prior to the bank’s support, the health facility which is located in the Wampar Rural LLG, stood lifeless, colourless and unoccupied. This was the state of Mare Aid Post when first visited by the staff of BSP Commercial Centre in Lae.
Despite its poor condition, it relentlessly serves the 2,000 plus population of Wampar LLG, which includes the Mare villagers, students and teachers of Mare Primary School, and the surrounding communities.
An average of 15 patients visit the post each day, and whilst each patient is attended to, the rest of the sick take shelter under nearby trees waiting for their turn. All because, there were no proper waiting bay for the patients and also due to the unstable building which may collapse at any time if more people climb on. During emergencies at night, the Aid Post Health Worker uses torch, lamps or mobile phone lights to attend to the sick.
Seeing the need of this community, the BSP Commercial Centre in Lae selected the village as part of its 2022 Community project initiative, to restore the aging health facility.
The team gave the structure a complete overhaul that saw the once fractured structure turn into a refreshing look on the exterior with newly painted walls whilst the interior was given a fully furnished job with refurbished floorings, walls, windows, roof and seats for waiting patients and shelves and storage. A new solar powered system was installed to assist the health worker attend to patients at night. Moreover, the lights also provides security for facility.
Wampar LLG Ward 1 Councilor Joe Bingyam, was in joyful tears during the handover saying, “BSP has helped restore the ever-needed facility in the community that the leaders tried so hard to rebuild.”
“It is our cry that this Aid Post should be fixed. The building was in a very bad state and slowly failing as it stood as a blemish in the schoolyard. And BSP has answered our cries to restore something the people of Mare and the Wampar community will treasure,” said Mr Bingyam.
He noted the community’s transport issues and high PMV fees to make one travel into the Lae and back. “The road conditions is also another factor that keeps us from travelling to and from to get better healthcare or services like this.”
“From the local community members, village leaders, teachers and staff of Mare Primary School and the Wampar LLG communities, we are very grateful for BSP to come this far into the community and delivering a much needed project for the community,” he said.
In continuing its support to health in the country, BSP’s Digital Strategic Business Unit (SBU) also assisted Pinu Village in the Gabadi District, Central Province, by providing a fully kitted clinic solar powered lighting and running water supply from a Bore connected to a solar water pump which now enables running water into the clinic building.
Not only does the solar power kit cater for the water pump but also caters for lighting of the building, as it is connected to a 240V inverter, providing power and lighting to the whole building. Power outlets and solar lights were installed throughout the building in both the interior and exterior. The clinic building now has power, lighting and running water for patients to get treatment.
BSP Corporate Banking SBU in Port Moresby on the other end, handed over a completed refurbished building and donation of medical kits to the Port Moresby General Hospital Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic, whilst mothers at Natal Ward now have a better ablution block facility after it was refurbished by three of BSP’s SBUs as a combined project.
According to BSP’s Head of Marketing and Public Relations, Gorethy Semi, “each year, BSP makes a commitment to giving back to the communities that we live and operate in through our annual Community Project initiatives.
“The contribution is simple, the work is voluntary by our staff and each time, we hope to leave lasting changes that make positive impacts in the lives of everyday people,” said Ms Semi.
“This significant community initiative shows our desire to be involved and committed to the communities to not only improve product offering, service levels and access to banking services, but to help build and strengthen our community involvement both in social and economic development in countries that we operate in.”
Each of the BSP Community Project is valued at K30,000 each and each year 40 to 50 plus projects are handed over to a total of about K1.5 million per annum.
Since inception in 2009, the bank has invested over K14million and delivered over 564 community projects in PNG alone, mainly on the much-needed areas of health, education and other special needs of the community.
This year, BSP will be delivering 49 community projects throughout PNG, 43 of which were successfully completed and handed back to the community, whilst 6 are nearing completion and handovers.
“We are more than a bank. We are committed to bringing services to the rural where no other banks go and we are proud of the contribution we make each year to the communities we operate in,” concluded Ms Semi.