You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.
Skip to content

Santos is pleased to have supported a community-led initiative to walk through the North Whagi district of Jiwaka province to commemorate the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (EVAW).

Santos Team handing over the EVAW walk banners and shirts to the Monrose group witnessed by the K-N-K community.

Kongambil village in Banz, Jiwaka province came alive as the community joined the rest of the country and the world in commemorating the EVAW day, observed November 25th each year. The community participated in a four-kilometre walk from Kongambil village to the main Banz-Kerowagi highway. This stretch of road on the highway was a vibrant sea of orange, with an estimated 300 people, both young and old, proudly taking part in the walk. This event was regarded as something new and unique for their community.

The walk was organized by Monrose, an informal local women’s group that was established earlier this year after a Santos Foundation’s Small Grants team’s grant monitoring visit to the area. During the visit, the team distributed ten Bel isi PNG t-shirts and information brochures. The Santos Foundation’s Small Grants initiative was instrumental in the creation of the Monrose women’s group, which has since been at the forefront of efforts to combat violence against women in Kongambil. The Foundation further made it possible through the donations of shirts and banners to the Monrose executives for this year’s EVAW walk.

Start of the walk at Kongambil village.

During the handover of the Monrose EVAW walk shirts and banners on Friday, 24th November, Brigitte Onguglo, Santos Foundation Small Grants Lead, said the Small Grants team was happy to learn that the ten shirts initially distributed in February had led to the formation of a group dedicated to addressing the daily challenges faced by women in their homes and communities. She emphasized that Monrose’s initiative aligns with the Foundation’s Small Grants program, which aims to protect, promote, and empower women and girls in Papua New Guinea.

According to the Papua New Guinea Demographic and Health Survey 2016–2018, women in PNG have experienced some form of violence since the age of 15 and more commonly between the ages of 30-39. Most of these women live in rural areas (4,237) compared to (636) in urban areas. The Highlands region was the highest recorded, with 1,794 cases indicated on the survey. The survey further indicated Jiwaka province had 218 women experiencing physical violence, while Morobe province had the highest number of 497 women experiencing violence.

Crowd walking along the Banz-Kerowagi highway.

The Monrose group distributed the shirts throughout the community, and the participants proudly wore them, carried placards, and chanted slogans to raise awareness and put an end to violence against women and girls in their community. They passionately shouted “noken paitim meri!” which translates to ‘do not hit women!’ in the Tok Pisin language.

Gabriel Kubul, a community leader of Kongambil, urged his people to take ownership of the shirts and banners and emphasized the strong partnership that the community and Santos Foundation Small Grants team have established in their joint efforts to combat violence against women. He emphasized that the conversation on violence against women should not be limited to a calendar event but rather a continuous conversation promoting peace, love, and harmony within families.

Nancy Pius, a representative of the Monrose group, expressed gratitude to Santos Foundation for their support with t-shirts and banners, which brought more significance and value to the walk. She urged the community to utilize this event as a platform to demonstrate that physical, emotional, and sexual violence is not tolerated in their community.

Crowd walking out of the K-N-K gate.

Meanwhile, Jean Martin, the Head of Santos Foundation in PNG, expressed satisfaction in seeing women taking the lead in addressing issues that affect them. She said Santos Foundation in PNG adopts a holistic approach to the fight against violence against women, contributing to the creation of safer and more inclusive communities.

The first ever Monrose EVAW walk at Kongambil was a groundbreaking event, serving as an eye-opener for the people of Kongambil and neighbouring villages, and the North Whagi district in Jiwaka.

The Monrose EVAW walk concluded with a small awareness program, during which members of the community were invited to share their perspectives on what EVAW means to them. Victims of violence were encouraged to share their experiences, while some individuals came forward (mostly male community members) to acknowledge their past actions as perpetrators and publicly pledged to refrain from engaging in any form of violence.

Santos Team handing over the EVAW walk banners and shirts to the Monrose group witnessed by the K-N-K community.


Each year, the Santos Foundation invites staff and contractors to apply for a Small Grant up to K5000.

The overall goal of the OSF Small Grants Scheme is to enable Santos staff and contractors to play leadership roles in their respective communities by contributing to improving:

  • The livelihoods of people in their community by addressing issues affecting them, especially those relating to women and girls
  • Address development issues and promote behavioural change, and.
  • Promote and extend the work of the Santos Foundation

In February, Santos Foundation Small Grants team conducted a monitoring and evaluation activity to assess a bore water project at the Kulak elementary school implemented by Santos Business Analyst, Francis Kubul in 2022. Kubul further applied for two additional Small Grants projects in 2023 firstly the installation of a water tank and later an ablution block for the school. The school serves over a hundred children and people of Kongambil and surrounding villages who use the water for drinking, handwashing, and cooking.

It was through Kubul’s Small Grants projects that led to the birth of Monrose, now a driving force for campaign against GBV in Kongambil.

Kongambil is part of the Kumuka, Nanzkup, Kapangkup (KNK) tribe which comprises of three independent tribes. The three tribes are represented by two LLG Ward Councillors. The KNK tribe has one voice in politics, economics, and community-related social issues. The tribe is highly integrated, which is rare in the Highlands region. Together, KNK has an estimated population of over 5,000 people.

Reference: Papua New Guinea Demographic and Health Survey