Life on Chuuk in the Federated States of Micronesia is laid back by day, but potentially dangerous by night.
Micronesians belong to a variety of faiths. Here, Mormon missionaries on Weno, the main island in Chuuk, seek to increase their flock.
The main road on Weno in Chuuk often floods, but most locals take things in stride.
Wilfred Robert, chief of staff for Chuuk’s governor, and Sisinio Willy, special consultant to the governor for the Office of Development Assistance, are looking to East Asia for development interests.
Jennifer Killon heads the Migrant Resource Center in Chuuk, which helps prepare Chuukese to leave for the U.S. and its territories. One concern is to make sure Chuukese migrants are aware of the danger of getting caught up in human trafficking.
It is not uncommon to see drunk men on the streets of Weno, even in daylight. Many are unemployed and have little else to do.
Chuuk has limited retail outlets, with many selling just a few products like rice, canned meats and beverages.
Children play without care on Weno’s main road, calling to passersby from America.
A store along the central road of Weno displays the limited offerings typical of many small shops.
Sunken vessels are a common sight in Chuuk Lagoon, considered the “wreck-diving capital of the world” — but for World War II relics, not this abandoned hauler.
Chuuk Lagoon is home to a world-class dive resort because of its warm, clear waters and the presence of dozens of sunken ships from the Japanese fleet in World War II.
At Blue Lagoon Resort, an employee knows to wave a “shaka” to a visitor from Hawaii. The resort is one of Chuuk’s rare thriving businesses, visited by tourists from Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and North America.
The Blue Lagoon Resort is in a gated compound at the southern tip of Weno, and the most popular dive sites are a short boat ride away.
Gradvin Aisek and his son, Tryfin Aisek, at the Blue Lagoon Resort dive shop museum. They are the son and grandson of the late Kimiou Aisek, the founder of the resort and dive shop.
Pete Mesley, who often leads tours to the Blue Lagoon Resort, operates a company called Lust4Rust. He’d like to see improvements made to Chuuk’s infrastructure to help expand tourism.
The waitresses at the Blue Lagoon Resort will patiently teach visitors Chuukese phrases.
Sunset on Chuuk, a poverty-stricken place with million-dollar views.
Despite its natural beauty, Chuuk has problems, including a poor economy, domestic violence and a population with many health needs.
Chuuk High School Principal Paul Hadik tries to stretch limited financial resources from the government to educate his students. The school recently opened a kindergarten program.
Students at Chuuk High School look like they could easily fit in at many American schools, and if the out-migration continues, they may get their chance.
With the United States as a common destination, learning English is a priority for many students in Chuuk.
A downpour at Chuuk High School. Because of little or no drainage, rain often leads to pooling on the streets.
Along the road to Xavier High School on Chuuk, girls pass the time on a rusted car.
Basketball — typically the outdoor variety — is popular throughout Micronesia.
Vice Principal Martin Carl with students at Xavier High School, a Jesuit institution that produces many leaders.
Xavier sees its mission as forming every student “intellectually, physically, emotionally, culturally, academically and spiritually.”
United Airlines is the only commercial passenger service to much of Micronesia. Here, passengers board a flight at the international airport in Chuuk.
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