MORE than three hundred pathfinders from Vanuatu have been denied the opportunity to celebrate this Christmas with their families due to flight disruptions.
Most of them are still in Honiara following the conclusion of the 2019 Trans Pacific Union Mission (TPUM) pathfinder camporee over the weekend.
Vanuatu has the second highest number of pathfinders attending last week’s camporee at the new Betikama camp ground with a total of more than 600 pathfinders.
Majority of them came in three separate chartered flights operated by Air Vanuatu while others came by normal scheduled flights.
Last week the Air Vanuatu jet experienced mechanical fault which resulted in flight disruptions to its international routes.
Most of thee proposed three charter flights scheduled for Saturday and Sunday over the weekend were canceled.
As a result the pathfinders are currently being accommodated at the Betikama Adventist College (BAC) while waiting for their flights. Air Vanuatu has also supported their stay.
Only one charter was able to operate on Monday.
Based on the revised scheduled released by Air Vanuatu on Wednesday the two remaining charters will now take place early tomorrow morning arriving in Honiara 3am and Sunday morning arriving in Honiara 1.40am.
Meanwhile, for some of the Vanuatu pathfinders it was a day well spent on Wednesday during the Christmas day to take time out with their sister clubs and friends to celebrate the day at the beach.
Despite missing out of celebrating this christmas back at their home country, for the first time they were able to celebrate it in Solomon Islands.
Members of the Lelepa club in Vanuatu was one of the clubs that got out to enjoy their time on Wednesday with their sister club at Lela beach, West of the Honiara.
The members got time to play volleyball and water ball, interact with their local counterparts, have a swim and have lunch with their sister clubs.
One of the pathfinder members Shane said he really enjoyed his time at the beach with other local pathfinders.
He said having an extra week in Honiara offered him the opportunity to better experience Honiara and more so spend this christmas in Solomon Islands.
Lelepa is a pathfinder club based on an island just off Port Vila city.
Despite the disruption in the charter, they are pleased with the support from their sister club and others who are supporting all the pathfinder clubs from Vanuatu.
Most of them are looking forward to returning home this weekend and celebrating their New Year with their families.
Definitely, they will have more stories to tell and share with their families about their two weeks experience in Honiara.