News

Crackers sets sail to help tribe

Former Lismore resident Craig “Crackers” Hand will sail from Darwin in a 15-foot boat with basic supplies to help an isolated tribe in Papua New Guinea.
Former Lismore resident Craig “Crackers” Hand will sail from Darwin in a 15-foot boat with basic supplies to help an isolated tribe in Papua New Guinea.

IN AN effort to provide an isolated Papua New Guinea tribe with basic supplies, former Lismore resident Craig "Crackers" Hand will have to navigate danger in a 15-foot boat.

This week, Crackers will sail from Darwin to Papua New Guinea to provide the secluded Sibidiri tribe with 200kg of medical supplies, educational materials and construction tools.

"I'm expecting to run into problems on this trip because I'm going into waters I've never been in, but they're just challenges I'll have to work through myself," he said.

It will be Crackers' third trip to the region and he will be alone for the best part of six to eight months.

However, a "Cracker tracker" device, created by mapping company Esri Australia, will monitor his journey and allow him to upload content to the internet.

"Every four hours a signal is sent to the server to show everyone where I am," Crackers explained.

"When I'm within range of a Telstra tower I'll be able to upload pictures, youtube clips and diary entries.

"The whole idea is people will be drawn to the project; it will raise awareness and at the end of the day, it will help this tribe."

In 2008, Crackers set a record by sailing the smallest boat from Australia to another country, which was Papua New Guinea. When he arrived there, he stumbled across the secluded Sibidiri tribe.

"I came across this tribe in PNG and they had nothing; no electricity, no roads, no anything," he said.

"The tribal king's brother had to paddle for two days to get his son, who had a badly broken arm, to medical care."

When Crackers returned, he founded Friends of Papua New Guinea, a non-profit organisation which aims to develop basic health care and educational facilities in remote parts of the country.

He said isolated citizens of Papua New Guinea endured particularly bad living conditions because there was little to no government support.

"The only government person I've ever seen in Papua New Guinea is a customs person," he said.

"There is no real government over there."

In past months, media and people from around the world have been fascinated by Crackers' projects and he has received many donations. He hoped the interest would increase and draw more attention to disadvantaged Papua New Guineans.

You can keep up to date with Crackers' journey at esriaustralia.com.au/crackertracker.

Topics:  papua new guinea


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Patti Smith confirmed for Bluesfest 2017

CONFIRMED: US singer Patti Smith performing in Switzerland last year.

Find out who else in the first line up announcement

Together at last in one place

BUNNIES: Shearwater Class 4 students Mallee and Stan, sneak in a cuddle of their class spring bunnies.

SHEARWATER Steiner School open new Early Childhood Centre.

You are going to Falls for this music line-up

CONFIRMED: Local artist Bernard Fanning is part of the line up for Falls Festival Byron Bay.

The line-up and ticket purchase details have been announced.

Latest deals and offers

Single-day tickets on sale for each date of Falls Festival

FIND out when is every artist playing this year in Byron Bay.

Patti Smith confirmed for Bluesfest 2017

CONFIRMED: US singer Patti Smith performing in Switzerland last year.

Find out who else in the first line up announcement

Together at last in one place

BUNNIES: Shearwater Class 4 students Mallee and Stan, sneak in a cuddle of their class spring bunnies.

SHEARWATER Steiner School open new Early Childhood Centre.

You are going to Falls for this music line-up

CONFIRMED: Local artist Bernard Fanning is part of the line up for Falls Festival Byron Bay.

The line-up and ticket purchase details have been announced.

BALI MURDER: Sara Connor's family cancels press conference

A supplied image obtained Sunday, Aug. 21, 2016 of Australian woman Sara Connor. The Byron Bay mother-of-two and her British boyfriend David James Taylor have been named as suspects in the death of Bali police officer Wayan Sudarsa, whose bloodied body was found on a Kuta beach early on Wednesday. (AAP Image/Sherpa Relations) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY

The Australian Government has warned the family not to address media

Coorabell digs up its time capsule

TIME CAPSULE: All the kids from Coorabell Public School ready to open up the time capsule.

COORABELL digs up its past this Friday

Photographer returns to showcase history of work

Renowned Australian photographer, John Elliott, has visited Crows Nest several times over the past twelve months collecting portraits of residents for his exhibition The Crows Nest Portrait Project. Photo Contributed

For Mr Elliott, photography is about capturing the moment

Blac Chyna sued after car injured 2 women

Blac Chyna is being sued after her friend crashed into another car

Bachelor Richie gives bacon-loving Noni the boot

Noni Janur features on this season of The Bachelor.

TOOWOOMBA swimwear designer still single but focusing on her career.

Chris Hemsworth surprises kids at hospital as Thor

Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston surprised children at hospital

Single-day tickets on sale for each date of Falls Festival

LAUNCH: The Avalanches' Robbie Chater and Tony Diblasi were the official DJs at the Byron Bay launch of Falls Festival 2016/17.

Find out when is each artist playing this year in Byron Bay

MOVIE REVIEW: War Dogs tells a fascinating true story

Miles Teller and Jonah Hill in a scene from the movie War Dogs.

DARKLY funny film examines the business side of the war on terror.

Folk singer looking forward to her Gympie Muster debut

Alternative country folk singer Fanny Lumsden will perform at the Gympie Muster.

FANNY Lumsden to serenade new fans with her country hall-style show.

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m

Guess which Sunshine Coast suburb cracked the million dollar list?

This four-bedroom home at 26 McAnally Dr, Sunshine Beach was for sale for $7 million.

List of Australia's five most-expensive suburbs

Does it get any better than this? Check out this $2M home

LUXURY LIVING: The Coral Cove home built by Steve Coates Constructions that took out the best home over $2 million and the Wide Bay Burnett House of the Year at the Master Builders Wide Bay Burnett Housing and Construction Awards.

Wide Bay's best home is right on our doorstep