Canadian Pilot lands at MUI airstrip in rural PNG for the first time in 25 years

GUELPH, Ontario, Jan. 14, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Humanitarian organization Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) supports many rural communities in remote Papua New Guinea.

In late 2021, there were many happy faces when Alberta native, MAF pilot Ryan Cole, did a test landing at the Mui airstrip in Papua New Guinea. Due to the serious repairs needed, it had been almost 25 years since the airstrip has been used. The surrounding communities combined efforts on this immense undertaking, working to restore it and get it up to standards. It is now officially open and will once again serve as a lifeline to the 14 surrounding villages, and the 10,000 people living there.

Airstrips in remote locations like Mui provide access to medical evacuations for sick or injured people who may otherwise not survive their injury or illness. MAF aircraft, with the help of pilots like Ryan, also deliver vaccinations, building materials, educational supports, medical staff and so much more.

It is special to land in a place where MAF has not been in such a long time. People are extremely grateful, and our staff enjoy taking extra time to interact. In the past few years, there has been so much that has separated us, pushing those living in isolation further away from help. This airstrip, and MAFs flights, are just one way we hope to bring connection back into the world.

Mission Aviation Fellowship has been serving in Papua New Guinea since 1951. With dense jungle, mountainous highlands, and hazardous roads, the need for aircraft as a means for transportation in Papua New Guinea is great. Isolated communities rely on MAF to fly in medical staff, teachers, humanitarian aid, as well as materials to build and equip schools and hospitals.

Canadian pilot Ryan Cole has served with MAF since 2008. He has lived in Papua New Guinea with his wife Siobhan since 2016.

For more than 75 years, Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) has been bringing help, hope and healing through aviation to some of the most isolated places on earth. Today, we partner with over 1,500 organizations to deliver support, hope, healing, spiritual care, and community development to thousands of communities where flying is not a luxury but a lifeline.

CONTACT: Brad Bell, CEO | 1-877-351-9344 |

Photos accompanying this announcement are available at

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