Nadave, Fiji – Disaster preparedness and a well assessed risk reduction plan will save lives-These were the words of Taina Naivalu from the St. John organization as she addressed participants at a Training of the Trainers workshop organized by the Partners in Community Development Fiji’s Child Centred Climate Change Adaptation (4CA) project.
Naivalu and her counterpart, Principal Officer, Sunia Navatu informed the participants heard that from 1951 to date, there were 103 hazardous events and of this figure, 56% were tropical cyclones 23% were earthquakes and 17% floods with over $USD360, 000, 000 used in recovery efforts so far.
The NDMO officers also informed those in attendance that everyone from the elderly to the young, from the Turaga-ni-koro (village headman) to the schoolchildren needed to be involved in reducing the risks of disasters and in their evacuation plans.
This is in-line with the work of the 4CA project as well as its outcomes which are to increase the capacity of children, youth and communities to facilitate the process of climate change adaptation, use locally designed climate smart solutions to address climate change and ensure that good practices and learning from the 4CA model is incorporated into local, district and national Government process.
4CA Project officer, Peni Seru in opening the workshop yesterday stressed to participants the importance of 303 which stands for 30 minutes every 3 months when villages and communities should carry out a mock up of their evacuation plan.
The participants are from the villages of Veidrala, Nasau, Nayavuira and Navuniivi from the Navitilevu as well as from Narikoso and Nakorovou villages from the Mataso district as they are working with PCDF and the 4CA Project. It is the aim of the workshop to come up with the climate change impacts or hazards they are facing, how they think the problem should be addressed and how they as a community can work together to minimize the impacts of the hazard.
The weeklong workshop focuses on ensuring that climate change adaptations are child centred. Some speakers on Day 1 were the Pacific Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development or PACE-SD from the University of the South Pacific(USP) as well as the Climate Change Unit and the Fiji Meteorological Centre. The Climate Change Unit also handed out the translated version of the climate change terms which is known as the “Vosaqali ni Draki Veisau” and the Climate Change Policy.
The weeklong workshop which is being held at the Centre for Appropriate Technology Development (CATD) in Nadave, Tailevu and will end this Thursday afternoon.
PCDF is funded by the Australian Agency for International Development (Australian Aid) and PLAN International Australia (PIA) to implement the 4CA Project in Ra.