When it comes to the science of tropical annual crop production and various types of agriculture surveys in Papua New Guinea, Sharryl Ivahupa is an expert.
Sharryl made her acquaintance with ExxonMobil PNG (EMPNG) in 2009 when the Australian National University conducted survey and census for the Project. She was a Geography Assistant with 16 years of experience in Papua New Guinea's agriculture industry.
Due to her hard work, Sharryl's skills were immediately recognised by the company. Under her new role as Public and Government Affair's Resettlement Advisor, she assisted the development of necessary resettlement manual and instructions that are still being used today.
Early last year Sharryl had the opportunity to represent EMPNG at the International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA) Conference in Brisbane, Australia, where she presented on her experiences and lessons learned on resettlement and livelihood restoration for PNG LNG, alongside environmental practitioners and academics from around the world.
"Resettlement is a very sensitive subject, so training is a big must for anyone who wants to be involved. It's not just as simple as going into communities and telling them the steps to resettlement. You do the first step and then review the process. My advice for anyone in resettlement is always to ensure you go through the process correctly," Sharryl said.
The conference saw experts from around the world come together to discuss best practice when it comes to environmental impact assessment, biodiversity surveys and resettlement.
"What I found is universal is that you cannot learn environmental best practice from sitting in a classroom. You need to see and hear and know what is happening on the ground," she added.
Sharryl is excited to be able to share the knowledge she gained with her colleagues, to help further educate them on resettlement and the work she does.
"I want to share my experience so wherever there may be another resettlement project, people can do it correctly. Not only following the guidelines they have but also having the heart for the community, which is empathy," she concluded.
EMPNG proudly drives local employment and invests in training members of the team like Sharryl to provide them with opportunities to expand their skillset and progress their careers in Papua New Guinea.