As the former Coordinator of Pacific Island Contingents, Naua Vanuawaru has a keen understanding of the contribution Pacific Island nations make to RAMSI’s Participating Police Force.
His objective for RAMSI is to continue to build relationships based on trust and confidence with all Pacific Islanders, and to use RAMSI’s cultural diversity to produce better outcomes for Solomon Islanders.
“With a group involvement the effects are so huge, and I am pleased to be involved in this time of challenge in recovering as a community”, he says.
And it is this idea of ‘effective cooperation’ that drives Naua’s work with RAMSI. He has taken a team-based approach to build confidence within the RAMSI Participating Police Force and Royal Solomon Islands Police Force, establishing new networks and opportunities for dialogue since his deployment to Honiara.
“Seeing the growth in confidence in the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force is very satisfying,” Naua says. “As their confidence builds, so does their ability to deliver a stronger police service to the people of Solomon Islands.”
As one of the many Papua New Guineans working with RAMSI, he is proud to represent both his country and his region. From Lalaura Village in Abai, Central Province, Naua has more than 15 years of policing experience, and describes his deployment in Honiara as Coordinator as a “unique and transforming time”.
Beyond his work duties, Naua uses his spare time to teach and promote cricket and rugby to communities in and around Honiara.
“It has been a great honour to make a personal difference and see the changes in a person’s life, enjoying their life at their best,” he says.
Bougainville Police Force officer Emmart Tsimes made a significant contribution to community policing in Solomon Islands.
In addition to many Papua New Guinean civilians and military serving with RAMSI, Solomon’s closest neighbour provides members of its police force to work as advisers as part of the RAMSI Participating Police Force.
One of these officers, Bougainville Police Force officer Emmart Tsimes, made a significant contribution to community policing in Solomon Islands during his deployment in 2010.
A police officer for more than 15 years, Emmart spent his time in Solomon Islands mentoring Royal Solomon Islands Police Force members who work in police posts in three local communities in the Honiara area. His daily work included education within schools and the community, joint patrols with local officers, and promoting crime prevention.
Becoming a police officer was a childhood dream for Emmart, which became reality when the Bougainville crisis hit Papua New Guinea in 1992. He finished school, trained, and served as a police officer for the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary for five years.
“It was my intention to return to my home province where I could uphold law and order there – so I returned to Bougainville,” he said. “I believe that RAMSI has bought back peace and stability to Solomon Islands,” he says.
Forty-year-old Emmart is a father of six, and especially enjoyed the interaction he had with the small children of the local Honiara communities.
“Being with the children reminds me so much of my kids back home,” he says, with a smile.
Emmart says Christmas Carols in the Islands event in 2009 has been a highlight of his time with RAMSI, and he will always remember the togetherness of kids of all ages, and the fun they had at the major event.
When not working Emmart likes to relax by visiting the beach, reading some good books and attending the local Kingdom Harvest Church.
“It’s been a great experience being here in Solomon Islands. I have also learnt a great deal from my Royal Solomon Islands Police Force colleagues. The way they communicate with their communities is great to see and shows me that the local police really know how to engage with their countrymen and women.”
Working together with police from all 15 countries of the Pacific Islands Forum, Emmart believes that he has made a valuable contribution to the Solomon Islands and says he has learnt more about the region he is a part of and passed on his skills and expertise to people coming from very similar backgrounds.