PROGRAM PRIORITIES of PTS
April 2021 - June 2022
1. Annual General Meetings of Vaka Valo Association and all-community meetings at Taumako were held in January, 2021. These meetings were meant to happen years earlier. However delays were caused by a tsunami, a volcanic eruption, 2 class 5 cyclones, and lack of travel funding or communications between Honiara-based Taumakoans and Taumako residents. In January Honiara-based directors went to Taumako, and decisions about programs and planning were made. Priority programs are listed below.
2. Construction of an all-season support, transport, and emergency vessel began in Hawai`i in June, 2020. We are now fundraising to outfit it and pass safety inspections in February, 2022. An escort vessel is legally required for student voyages of the TePuke. The 38ʻ vessel under construction is an ocean-going proa design in modern materials and a 14hp diesel auxiliary engine. Pacific Traditions Society (PTS) has engaged the very distinguished and experienced builder, Ocean People, Inc, to build it. The proa will accommodate 3 or 4 crew, and 6 passengers OR freeze a ton of fish OR carry cargo. Selling fish and providing transport and emergency services will support educational programs of the Taumako charitable organization.
3. Fundraise for student sea-training and voyages to extend the inter-island range for training voyages and accommodate more student crew members. Costs include rations for workers and school fees for workers’ children, so that parents can work on the canoe.
4. Build a TeAlo Lili to replace the TePuke damaged by ants and a 2020 cyclone at Vanikoro. Constructing this vessel will take at least 18 months, and will likely involve some collaborations between communities of Taumako and Vanikoro and/or Utupua, where young people want to learn to build a deep sea vaka. A suitable tree for this vaka has been offered at Taumako.
5. Fundraise to build a permanently-roofed canoe house (Halevaka) at Taumako. This structure is urgently needed: to shelter and maintain canoes, to accommodate students and visitors of Lata Cultural Voyaging School, to safely archive voyaging library books, video equipment & editing lab, cultural resource materials, solar and WIFI communications center office equipment, tools and supplies. A suitable site has been offered and selected.
6. Fundraise to install a solar/wind power system and a donated Kacific Sat-dish to support internet communications, laptops, video equipment, and solar lighting. Communications must be established with the outside from the Taumako-based charitable organization so that they can welcome and accommodate voyaging students and visitors interested in ancient voyaging knowledge. 12 MacBook Air laptops have been donated by Fred Ross with matching grants by Microsoft and PTS, and are awaiting renewed approval of duty-free import status by the Internal Revenue committee of Solomon Islands.
7. Complete part 3 of We, the Voyagers: Lata’s Children documentary film series. The first film, We, the Voyagers: Our Vaka, and the second film We, the Voyagers: Our Moana are both available on Vimeo. We seek donor support for costs of making the third film, We, the Voyagers: Our Family. This film focuses of women and children in voyaging and on re-establishing inter-island partnerships and networks, including with new partners internationally.
8. Complete a voyage from Taumako, Solomon Islands to Vanuatu. In recent years the seasonal winds are fluky. But this voyage will be made when the time is right.
9. Complete and publish Sailing with Lata, a book telling the story of the Vaka Taumako Project and explaining a wealth of never before reported voyaging knowledge taught by Kaveia, Jonas, and other women and men masters of Polynesian voyaging arts. Fundraising for completion of diagrams and supplementary video sequences to be included with the book, writeup time for the authors to work together, and for expert work in web publishing and distribution.
10. Fundraise for salaries, office space, and equipment for Honiara administrators of the Taumako charitable organization. They need to pay rental of office space, communications data, laptops, video software, and modest salaries while they write grant applications and create programs and collaborations with international offices and students.
11. Complete digitization and acquire protective storage boxes for all the video footage, photos, books, and voyaging valuables to be safely archived at Taumako. Completion of the canoe house is required to protect the assets (see above).
12. Complete design and registration of a WIX website for VVA. In 2021 the Taumako charitable organization can take control and begin load their own content. Fundraising for $25.USD/month cost to be paid by the Taumako charitable organization.
*PTS aims to meet these goals between April, 2021 and June, 2022 to make the Taumako charitable organization completely self-supporting.
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