Save the Children Fiji (SC Fiji) is facilitating a week-long workshop on Operational Plans and Income Generating Projects (IGP) for a total of 31 Community Education Committee members of its ten supported Early Childhood Education (ECE) Centres.
The workshop commenced on Monday and will conclude on Friday this week at Waterfront Hotel in the Western Division.
SC Fiji Vuli Taumada Shishak Project Manager, Barbara Ratabacaca, said the project has provided the same workshop in the Central and Northern Divisions already to work towards sustainability in the ECE centres.
“We encourage ECE communities to be sustainable to fully operate their own centres independently especially as the Project will facilitate the centres for three years, starting last year. Therefore independent coordination is important,” Ms Ratabacaca said.
A participant at the workshop, Maria Rabici of Vunato ECE centre, said the workshop is very important as she has learnt many things that could be implemented in the centre.
“So far, I have learnt how to draw up a proper budget, cash flow, monitoring and evaluation.
This is very interesting as I have been a Treasurer with Vunato Community Kindergarten for the past four years,” Ms Rabici said.
She added that this is the first time that such activities are discussed in detail and would really help in her work in the centre.
Ms Ratabacaca said the community knows best what resources are available to help in generating income.
“These would include flower arrangement, fishing, wood carving, backyard gardening, screen printing and weaving,” she added.
Vunato ECE centre, through their mother’s group, has been involved in small-scale IGP’s like selling of flowers and curry nights to help with the expenses of the centre.
“From this workshop, we have learnt that while it is important to start small, we should also look at resources around us like land and skills. We should capitalise on these and work towards bigger IGP’s like bee-keeping and handicraft sales to hotels,” Ms Rabici added.
She added that she is very thankful to SC Fiji for providing the communities with a vast knowledge and ideas on how to function independently and to work towards sustainability.