Willeke Jongkind, sympathizer of Hapin, explains:
As a young girl I already read books about missionaries in Papua. And two ladies who lived and worked in Papua regularly visited my neighbors. But at the time, I had no idea that I would ever end up on the island myself. My husband and I always thought we were going to live in Africa. My husband is a mechanical engineer and a general aviation pilot.
When our friends started their own foundation to train Papuans to be mechanics and pilots (Stichting Licht op Papua), it suddenly went very quickly. In January 2014 we left for Wamena with our children. What a beautiful place, what beautiful people! My heart has opened for Papua. Of course, life was not all rosy. Papuans know about suffering like no other. But at the same time they are so resilient, strong and full of life. I have learned a lot from my time in Wamena, both about the Papuans and about myself.
After 1.5 years we made the switch to AMA and after 4.5 years we returned to the Netherlands. This is where I started working for the Papua Solidarity Day foundation. That is also how I came into contact with Hapin. I think it’s great that so many Dutch people are working hard to support projects and people in Papua. That support and encouragement is important. This is how we let the Papuans know: “We stand behind you, you can do so much and are so strong”. It is my wish that there will be peace in Papua. And that the population can live and enjoy their beautiful island in complete safety.