A report released at the end of May on the impact of the multibillion dollar Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) project in Papua New Guinea (PNG) highlights the value of bringing diverse interest groups together to address social challenges, said Dr Kerry Enright, National Director of UnitingWorld.
The LNG project offers the prospect of substantial economic growth to PNG's Hela region.
But with that promise has come significant social upheaval.
The report, "The Community Good – Examining the Influence of the PNG LNG Project in the Hela Region of Papua New Guinea", recognises the industry's contribution to the community and also, Dr Enright said, "does not shrink from naming key issues the community, church, government and industry need to face up to.
"It also shows the various parties' willingness to work together for the community good.
The challenge is to act on the report in the crucial next two years."
United Church in Papua New Guinea Development Secretary Uvenama Rova echoed Dr Enright's hope.
"The research project enabled people with a range of views – the community, government and industry – to talk together about the issues we face," he said.
"We're especially grateful to our partner, UnitingWorld, for recognising the need and the value of this project and for supporting the production of the report.
"As a result we now have the chance to work together on the challenges identified in the report for the good of the community."
UnitingWorld will continue to work alongside the United Church of Papua New Guinea to communicate the report's findings and empower communities in the Hela Region.