Introduction / History
The Marind primarily live by hunting (deer and pig), fishing, gardening and raising coconut and sago trees. With their land at an altitude of less than 100 meters above sea level, the Marind, Bian people can best be accessed by boat (especially the Bian River villages). There is also a road to Muting.
Generally the people wear modern clothing. The people eat roasted sago with fish, fruits and vegetables. Rural houses are generally made from tree trunks and leaves. There is a SSB radio in Pahas and PLN electricity in Muting. The people identify themselves as Marind but different from the coastal Marind. The people get their drinking water mostly from rivers or wells, but 1 village uses rainwater. Some villages have clinics and health workers but some do not. Many villages also lack toilet facilities. Malaria and respiratory diseases are some of the more common diseases faced by the people. To improve their economic conditions, the Marind, Bian speakers need markets for the fruit and coffee they grow. The Marind, Bian people have no gospel cassettes, films or videos in their language. "Wati" drink is frequently served at birthday, marriage and adult initiation ceremonies.
The Marind, Bian are sometimes known as the Boven-Mbian, Bian, Northwest Marind, Boven Tor, or Boven Bian people. The people speak Marind, Bian at home and use Indonesian for trade communication.
What are their beliefs?
It is estimated that less than half of the Marind speakers have understood the gospel but there are at least 9 Protestant and Catholic churches in the area.
Text source: GMI Papua