The people of Navala Village in the Ba Highlands will for the first time be able to eat freshly baked bread. In a joint project between The Beckenham Baptist Church (BBC) of Christchurch, Moffat and Fiji Gas, a bakery and a small shop has been built and equipped to service the 500 residents of the Village.
Navala Village is famous in Fiji for having over 200 traditional bures with thatched roofs. It has become a major tourist attraction with daily tours from Nadi. Despite this it has been without many modern conveniences including a bakery.
The Beckenham Baptist Church of Christchurch in New Zealand first became associated with the village in 2006. The Pastor from Navala’s church approached Pastor Tony Blackie of the BBC and the relationship has flourished ever since.
In 2012 the BBC built a church community centre in Navala village. There were a number of further discussions about other ways in which the church could help the village. The plan to build the bakery was formed and in a partnership with Moffat and Fiji Gas it will soon be complete.
Pastor Tony Blackie with the help of Christchurch Youth Groups and the local Rotary Club has risen over $25,000 FJD. Moffat have designed and built 3 bespoke ovens for the project and Fiji Gas have installed the ovens in the new bakery and shop and have also donated 4 x 50kg cylinders to the bakery. In future the empty cylinders will be exchanged with full cylinders in Ba Town.
Ravin Kumar, S&I Supervisor with Fiji Gas said, “This was my first visit to Navala Village. It is a truly magical spot with traditional bures, mountains and the Navala River. It was a privilege to work with the BBC and Moffat on this project and spend time here. Everyone I’ve talked to is excited and looking forward to getting fresh bread for breakfast.”