Pacific FAQs

The people of Melanesia live in isolated and dispersed communities that makes access to resources and services incredibly difficult. Papua New Guinea ranks 158 on the Human Development index, the Solomon Islands 156, while New Zealand ranks 9. Vanuatu was ranked as the most at risk country to natural disaster in the world. Many communities have alarming health indicators similar to countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Other key problems include:
  • Low levels of health and nutritional knowledge leading to significant child malnutrition
  • High levels of chronic diseases
  • Limited access to health services in rural areas
  • Gender based violence and discrimination
  • Lack of hygienic sanitation and reliable water supplies
  • Geographic challenges and limited infrastructure
  • Barriers to education, particularly for women
  • Urbanisation
  • Natural disasters and climate change.
Climate change is a social problem, not just an environmental one. Many of the countries the most exposed to extreme weather events and a changing climate are also those facing the most significant barriers to adapting to its impacts - and these are countries where World Vision works.

  In these regions, climate change is threatening food security, agriculture, water supplies, economic stability and health, especially among children. For example, extreme weather events can spread diseases including diarrhoea, leptospirosis, cholera, and typhoid through exposure to contaminated water or decreased hygiene due to water shortages. These diseases have the potential to kill children.

On top of this, climate change is causing large scale displacement of people within countries and sometimes across country borders. This climate-related migration poses major health risks to those on the move. Without proper planning, migration can place people in dangerous and precarious living situations. Migrating also threatens communities’ connections with their lands, livelihoods, and cultural heritage.

These overlapping issues can be addressed directly through World Vision’s work. World Vision is working alongside communities, including in the Pacific, to strengthen their resilience to climate impacts so that they can remain in their homelands. The organisation is also partnering with women, children, and people with disabilities to strengthen their participation in decision-making and boost their disaster preparedness. At the same time, World Vision is taking actions that reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions to avoid climate change’s most severe effects.
World Vision works in Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste. This is where the needs are most urgent with alarming health indicators similar to countries in sub-Saharan Africa.

Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands fall into the UN’s category of the poorest countries in the world. Vanuatu is consistently ranked as the most at risk country in the world to natural disaster - in 2015 it was devastated by tropical cyclone Pam, and months later severely affected by drought from the El Nino weather pattern. Timor Leste has the highest rate of child malnutrition in the world.

In these four countries we have vast experience and programming expertise.