at the Navosai Community
Islands Voice Open Days, held in 2003, had been very well attended
and participating communities had been invited to draft work plans
and request assistance for follow-up action to carry them out.
The Navosai community is the first to receive follow-up assistance.
community is a subdivision in suburban Suva and is composed of
about 200 households, of which 64 belong to the Methodist Church.
The remaining households belong to other denominations. This community
is not a traditional village as such, but is composed of migrant
families from various parts of Fiji settled in Suva on a semi-permanent
basis for job opportunities and children's education.
was held in August 2004 with the Methodist Church Community group
and the COTS (Chemistry Outreach to Schools) team led by Dr. K.
Koshy, and UNESCO representatives, Mr. Hans Thulstrup and Dr.
Gillian Cambers. After a traditional kava welcome by community
elders, a group of elders discussed their efforts at cleaning
up their community and maintaining a healthy environment. Government
services in this rapidly growing migrant settlement are irregular
at best, and as a result the community has taken responsibility
for a number of services normally handled by government, such
as roadside clearing, planting, beautification and occasionally
Photo caption: Community leaders and
Mr. Hans Thulstrup (second from left) at entrance to church/community
centre, August 2004
identified their main problem as excessive kava (grog) intake,
in particular among males. They stressed that while respect between
community members from different places of origin as well as between
generations was still maintained, 'city' influences made this
less so than in more traditional villages.
and assorted garden implements were presented to the community
by the COTS team at the end of the ceremony in response to interests
expressed by the community in developing composting pits as part
of their clean-up efforts. The community responded by promising
to put them to good use, such as the digging of composting pits
and provided assurance that the equipment provided would be considered
part of the church inventory, thereby securing it against theft.
Photo caption: Presenting a Wheelbarrow and other implements
to a Community Elder at Navosai, August 2004
Photo caption: community planting and beautification at Navosai,