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PACIFIC - Fiji Activities

Community Outreach

Community 'Open Day' Consultations

The Pacific Centre for Sustainable Development at the University of the South Pacific has been working in the field of community outreach and awareness building for some time. Through the Chemistry Outreach to Schools (COTS) programme, university students are trained to give public seminars and discussions in schools on a variety of contemporary environmental issues. This work is carried out in Fiji as well as in the students' home countries, e.g. Solomon Islands, Samoa and Kiribati. What makes COTS very special is the fact that it is designed to be a programme of the students for the students and by the students.

The Ocean Futures Society is also working in the field of awareness and education particularly as regards sustainable management of coral reefs and their associated fisheries. In 2002, the Ocean Futures Society and COTS linked up to work together to popularise sustainable development ideas in the Pacific.

During the second half of 2003, the Pacific Centre for Sustainable Development used the foundation laid by these initiatives to develop a new partnership with Small Islands Voice to listen to the voices of communities of the Pacific islands, to understand their concerns about sustainable development at the local level, and to encourage natural resource conservation activities.

As a first step, three major 'Open Days' were held on Saturdays in August/September 2003 in Suva, Lautoka and Labasa involving schools, their neighbouring village communities and youth groups active in the area. The results of the Open Days and the issues emerging are available in a report. During the 'open days', discussions were directed towards specific activities that could be undertaken by the communities at the local level. One of the major ideas to emerge is the "Clean X" concept. This has already borne fruit with two villages outside Suva participating in the "Clean Village" programme.

 

To get involved, contact :

 
 

Dr. Kanayathu C. Koshy
Director
Pacific Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development,
University of the South Pacific, Suva, Fiji.
T 679 321 2184
F 679 330 9176
koshy_k@usp.ac.fj

 

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