The Rotary Club of Brisbane (RCOB) has been supporting the Kyeema Foundation, a Brisbane-based not-for-profit organization, in the breeding and conservation of indigenous village chickens in Papua New Guinea (PNG) since 2018. The project involves the upskilling of local farmers, providing support for the growing of indigenous chickens by way of peer training activities. Five breeding and training centers  (two funded by RCoB, one of which was also supported by a District Grant from The Rotary Foundation and District 9600) and two coral gardening trials have been established in Central and Morobe provinces as part of the overall program to ensure sustainable village poultry keeping techniques and conservation of indigenous chickens.
The club has engaged in this project with the goal of helping to improve living standards in Papua New Guinea. More than 80% of Papua New Guineans live a rural subsistence existence, collecting food grown from their gardens. Estimates of childhood stunting in PNG are the fourth highest in the world at an estimated 49.5% (Global Nutrition Report, 2016), with a key contributor being lack of protein and essential micronutrients in the diet. With these statistics in mind, it was decided that the club would work towards the fulfillment of the objectives of the project.
Initial RCOB support was provided in 2018 to Haus Pikinini in Wau, Morobe Province, to set up a village chicken farm. Additional funds were provided in 2020 to support the set-up of another breeding and training center, with attached local feed gardens, in Gabagaba village, located in Rigo district, Central province.
The RCOB funds are part of a larger project being supported with funds from the Australian government’s NGO Cooperation Program, which results in every dollar provided by RCOB being matched by an additional five dollars from the Australian government. This project also includes support of community-led no fish zones and coral reef gardening activities, with village chickens as an alternative food and livelihood activity for the coastal communities of the area.