The Embassy of the United States of America, Suva Fiji, Pacific Regional Environment Office- Environment, Science, Technology and Health Small Grant programme will fund a one-year Climate project titled: Building Community Resilience to Climate Change through Education and Community-based resource management in the Mamanuca Islands.
Extreme climatic event, ocean acidification, declining marine species, and rising sea levels are evidence of change in the Pacific. According to Marica Vakacola, MES Project Manager, there is a lack of awareness in most communities of how climate change will affect daily life regarding coastal erosion, seawater intrusion, fish stocks and fresh water supplies. The project hopes to raise more awareness on climate change issues with the vulnerable island communities and work in collaboration with various stakeholders in the Mamanuca region and the Department of Forestry in developing adaptive capacity activities in mitigating climate change through replanting coastal areas, native dry forest areas and protecting watershed areas.
MES would like to sincerely thank Mr Mark Mineo, US Embassy Grant officer and the Pacific Regional Environment Office team at the US Embassy Suva Fiji for their financial support towards climate change resilience education
The awareness program targets the four village communities, Solevu, Yaro, Tavua and Yanuya with the inclusion of four community schools, Malolo District School, Namamanuca Primary School, Mana Seventh day Adventist School and Ratu Lalabalavu School and the two registered preschools Yaro Kindergarten and Tavua Kindergarten. The same will be organised with the eleven MES member resorts including Castaway, Malolo, Likuliku, Navini, South Sea Island, Namotu, Tavarua, Vomo, Tokoriki, Mana and Cloud 9 and information also shared during Environment guest presentation at MES member resorts.
The organisation is committed to the promotion of awareness of the need to protect the marine and terrestrial resources of the Mamanuca Region and assist in the environmentally sustainable development of these resources for the benefit of the present and future generations. “The one year program that starts this month hopes to produce gains in local knowledge and better understand climate system that will produce positive behavioural changes regarding the role of the oceans in regulating the global climate and the importance to quality of life of healthy local ecosystems of the coastal margins, mangroves, seagrasses, salt marsh habitats and upland vegetation” says Ms Vakacola
MES would like to sincerely thank Mr Mark Mineo, US Embassy Grant Officer and the Pacific Regional Environment Office team at the US Embassy Suva Fiji for their financial support towards climate change resilience education and their assistance in empowering local community in the region and providing more opportunity to learn about climate change effects in their communities and take actions on ways to better mitigate these climatic changes.