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Remote Vanuatu island gets helping hand from P&O Australia

Ann Sherry: P&O is committed to giving back to islands in the South Pacific
The ground has been broken on a much-needed health facility being funded by P&O Partnership on the remote Vanuatu island of Aneityum.

The partnership, a joint venture between P&O Cruises Australia and Save the Children, has allocated A$270,000 to replace a pre-1970s building with a new dispensary and treatment and maternity rooms.

P&O Cruises Australia adds one optional dollar to each passenger’s shipboard account and around A$400,000 has already been raised to complete three projects -- two kindergartens and an aid post.

When P&O ships visit, villagers from Aneityum row across to nearby Inyeug Island, renamed Mystery Island because it ‘sounded more romantic’ by Sitmar (later P&O) when its 24,000gt Fairstar became the first cruise ship to call there.

They entertain the passengers and sell their handicrafts and it is one of the company’s most popular South Pacific destinations.

‘We have made a commitment to give back to the communities who make our guests so welcome and our partnership with Save the Children is an excellent way to achieve this,’ Carnival Australia ceo Ann Sherry said.

‘The Pacific islands are among the most beautiful in the world, offering truly unique experiences, but there is also a significant community need when it comes to health and education facilities,’ Sherry said.

‘Our guests welcome the opportunity to join with P&O Cruises and Save the Children in addressing these needs, beginning initially in Vanuatu.’