Ukarumpa is a small town located in the eastern highlands of Papua New Guinea. With a population of 500-800 people, primarily missionaries who have come as translators or support personnel, Ukarumpa is the main centre for most of Papua New Guinea’s Bible translation work.
Although it is very near the equator, the high altitude (5,100 feet about sea level) allows for year-round pleasant temperatures and few mosquitoes.
Papua New Guineans live and work “on Centre,” but for the most part, the Ukarumpa population is made up of translators and support workers from Australia, Finland, Germany, South Korea, the US, the UK, and other countries throughout the world.
The on-centre store has a surprisingly wide selection of food. The store managers even order food products from Australia and the United States, with shipments arriving several times per year. In addition, locals come to sell fresh fruits and vegetables at the market three times per week.
Ukarumpa also has tennis courts, a weight room, frisbee golf courses, a horse paddock, and a river nearby where students often swim or go inner tubing on the weekends. Several large fields on Centre allow for frequent community activities such as volleyball and Ultimate frisbee games. The area also offers opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, and visiting local villages. The nearest good-sized town, Kainantu, is about a twenty minute drive away and has additional stores, a large market, and second-hand clothes stores.