Andai in Papua New Guinea

Joshua Project has identified the Andai only in Papua New Guinea





Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

The Andai people live in the mountains of the East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea. Their staple food is sago. They process the trunk of the sago palm to make a flour which is subsequently mixed with a little water and cooked over the fire into dry, pancake-shaped loaves. The Andai people also eat green leafy vegetables and occasionally hunt for animals such as tree kangaroo and snake.

The need to collect sago sometimes leads the Andai people to leave their villages for weeks at a time because the sago palms grow far away from their villages. While they are processing sago, Andai families live in temporary shelters in small bush camps. They also cultivate some produce in small gardens, although reportedly gardening is not part of their traditional culture.
The Andai people primarily speak their vernacular language, also called Andai. Although some people also speak Tok Pisin, which is one of the trade languages of Papua New Guinea, proficiency in Tok Pisin is limited. Many women do not speak more than a few basic words of Tok Pisin.

Despite trends of modernization in Papua New Guinea, the Andai people hold on to their traditional way of life. They hunt with bow and arrows, construct their houses from materials derived from the palm tree, travel in dugout canoes, and some, especially men and boys, wear traditional clothing.

What Are Their Beliefs?

In 1982 the first Lutheran church was planted in the Andai area. The Lutheran church has both local leadership and foreign missionaries working amongst the Andai. While most people in the area profess Christianity, there appears to be much nominalism and, although it is not always admitted openly, it seems that traditional spiritual practices are common. Sorcery, divination and magic are still practiced.

There is no Scripture written in the Andai language, and many people cannot understand the Bible well in any other language. There is a need for God's Word to be translated into Andai. Since many Andai people have never been to school, they will need significant outside assistance in translating the Bible.

Profile Source:   Anonymous  

Expanded PDF Profile

People Name General Andai
People Name in Country Andai
Population in Papua New Guinea 500
World Population 500
Countries 1
Progress Scale 2.2
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Meakambut
Affinity Bloc Pacific Islanders
People Cluster New Guinea
People Name General Andai
Ethnic Code AON09b
People ID 10396
Country Papua New Guinea
Region South Pacific
Continent Australia
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country East Sepik Province, Karawari Rural District. Mountain villages Arafundi and Wagupman rivers' head, Kaiyam, Kupini, Awarem, Namata, Andambit, and in Imboin villages.   Source:  Ethnologue 2010
Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Andai (500)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Andai 500
For Primary Language: Andai

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions No
New Testament No
Complete Bible No
Resource Format
None reported  
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 2.00 %)
15.00 %
Ethnic Religions
85.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
20.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
60.0 %
Roman Catholic
20.0 %
Photo Source: Anonymous  
Map Source: Anonymous  
Profile Source: Anonymous  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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