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The Butterfly Trust works alongside communities in rural Vanuatu to improve their access to health care and education.

We have been doing this work since 2009 in partnership with many people and organisations. You will see some of them on this website.

We have a Memorandum of Understanding with the Vanuatu Ministries of Health and Education authorising our work in Vanuatu.

We also operate in close collaboration with other NGOs to avoid duplication of resources and programmes.

Our focus has initially been on the south and southeast of the island of Malekula, but, as the Trust grows, the next two years are likely to see us working further afield as well. The Trust currently has projects on Tongoa and Ambae.

We are very grateful to everyone who helps us make this work possible. If you would like to join our community, please get in touch. We would love to hear from you.



On 13 March 2015,  category 5 Cyclone Pam tore through Vanuatu leaving widespread destruction and damage. Since then the Butterfly Trust has been working hard to assist with the relief effort and put in place programmes for longer term recovery.

The Trust’s strategy is to assist in the relief work wherever possible, but also to maintain its focus on the long-term objective of providing access to education and health services.

To achieve this, the Trust has been working very closely with the international relief effort and the Vanuatu government. There is a coordinated effort going on which is overseen by the government. The NGOs gather into groups called “clusters” which work on specific areas of need.  The Trust has been working with separate clusters for food security and agriculture (FSAC), water and sanitation (WASH), shelter, education, health, and infrastructure.

We have had a wonderful response to our call for funds to assist in the relief work. We are  incredibly grateful for all the support and encouragement you have given, form all over the world. It is amazing. Thank you so much for thinking about the small island nation of Vanuatu which has been devastated by the cyclone. The people here are very resilient and are showing great heart in picking up the pieces of their lives, but it makes it a lot easier for them to know that people like you, actually care for them.

Read more in the latest update.





You can donate via


Donate to the Trust’s Bank account

Account number:  ASB 12-3233-0464934-50

Sort Code: ASB BNZ 2A

Address: Ground Floor, Botany Town Centre, 588 Chapel Road, East Tamaki, Auckland, New Zealand


100% of your donations goes into projects.

IMG_5355 Epi - Nalema 22 Mar 15 211c



Supporting small village schools improve facilities are a means to a better education. Namaru Primary School has 6 classrooms. The Trust is working towards supplying solar power for each classroom. Learn more

Jack Kallan is 14 years old and wants to become a doctor one day. He was one of 28 pupils in the Year 8 class of Sangalai Centre School who received a school fee subsidy from the Butterfly Trust. Families in the Maskelynes recognise the value of a good education and struggle to find enough funds to pay the high cost of fees. The Butterfly Trust supports the entire class of primary school leavers each year so they can attend secondary school. Read more





The Trust promotes the acquisition of trade and vocational skills  for adults with little formal qualifications. In 2010, we supplied the Uliveo Workshop in Peskarus village with a range of tools and facilitated a practical workshop in construction skills. Builders who graduated from the Rural Training College in the Maskelynes were able to apply their workshop skills and earn an income from community development projects. Read more


In 2011, the topic was generators and solar power installations. The Trust, with the expertise of volunteer Brian Basura, successfully ran an intensive workshop at the Uliveo Builders’ Workshop in Peskarus. Representatives from each of the villages attended, gaining both theory and practical knowledge which they were able to apply immediately. Learn more



A shortage of trained medical personnel, ageing workforce, poor access to health services in remote villages and the high cost of training courses means that Vanuatu still lags behind in its primary health status. The Trust, with the assistance of volunteer GPs from New Zealand and Australia are looking at long term measures to strengthen health services in the  Maskelynes. Read more

                                                               Our Philosophies



 Pikanini blong Maskelyne

“Children from the Maskelynes”

Visit our Media page for more video footage.


Transport around Vanuatu’s 83 islands is very costly for many ni-Vans. Here, Head teacher Mr Benson Tangou and fellow teacher, Mr Ivan hitch a ride on Rireana to Port Vila to purchase supplies for the school.

We use our yacht as a base for the work of the Butterfly Trust.

Browse our Sailing Log for more.

Help with transporting donated items to the Maskelynes.







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