13 Dec 2017

Conservationist in PNG urges NGOs to listen to communities

From , 4:02 pm on 13 December 2017

A conservationist working to save tree kangaroos in Papua New Guinea's Torricelli mountain range is urging NGOs working in the Pacific to take more time to listen to people in the communities they work in.

Jim Thomas and his wife Jane have spent most of the last 15 years living and working with communities in Sandaun province to set up the Tenkile Conservation Alliance, named after the endangered marsupials.

The Alliance now protects about 200,000 hectares of rainforest.

Koroi Hawkins spoke to Mr Thomas about his grassroots approach.

A Tree Kangaroo in Papua New Guinea.

A Tree Kangaroo in Papua New Guinea. Photo: Tenkile Conservation Alliance - From the film page "Into The Jungle"

A film documenting the Thomas's journey Into The Jungle premiered in Port Moresby last month. The feature length film also boasts appearances by Sir David Attenborough and Dame Jane Goodall. The filmmakers aim to have it screening next in Australia and eventually around the world.