Team Bougainville: Meet Emilio

Emilio Billy is the newest member of CUFA’s Bougainville team. He joined us after completing our  Youth Training Program. We had a chat to Emilio to learn more about him and his journey from participant to Project Officer. 



1. How did you come to be working at CUFA?

Through interest and commitment. I am passionate about the work CUFA does and the programs being delivered. For example, I was once a participant of CUFA’s training programmes and my commitment demonstrated to have produced significant result to be where I am. So that interest motivated me to be part of that organisation to learn more and impart the knowledge to the younger generations. When there is opportunity, you grabbed it, and that is where am now as a CUFA project officer, and it’s so wonderful to work with CUFA.


2. Describe your family?

We were four in the family and I am the second among my three sisters. My parents were subsistence farmers. They worked very hard to bring us up to where we are today, where my elder sister and I now now teachers, but I work as a CUFA project officer. My third sister is doing her final year in college studying accounting, and the youngest one is currently in year 12.


3. What do you like to do in your spare time?

Doing self-assessment on week’s activities and making improvements for the coming week’s activities.


4. What do you learn on your CUFA training?

I have learnt so many positive lessons from the CUFA training. One I particularly remember is: in order for the participants to be interested in what you are trying to teach them, you must have the interest in the content of that topic so that the sessions also become engaging and inspiring.


5. What do you hope to do in the future?

I want to spend time with my community and transfer the knowledge I gained from CUFA, which can enable the people to be self-reliant and to improve their livelihoods.


6. What advice do you have for other young people in Bougainville?

Bougainville is known for its abundance; an island floating in the Pacific Ocean containing all the minerals you can name, and yet, we are becoming poorer – why? It is because our leaders have lost focus, and I thank CUFA for stepping in to filling this gap. Therefore, my advice to the young Bougainvillians is to start small but think big in whatever you want to accomplish in life.



7. What do you hope for in your country?

I have hope that my country will one day be like a little heaven on earth, enhanced with determined young people with positive attitudes for the future. It’s time to change our attitudes for a better Bougainville.



Read more of our Boungainville experiences here


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