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INTER-REGIONAL

Pacific/Caribbean Youth Cultural Exchange - 2007

During the inter-regional meeting in Bequia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, July 2005, Small Islands Voice partners put forward a proposal for an inter-regional cultural exchange among young islanders from the Caribbean region and the Pacific. Previous exchanges, such as between the Maldives and Seychelles, have shown that island to island exchange activities have multiple benefits including the sharing of sustainable island lifestyles, education for sustainable development, and culture (drama, art, music, language).

The Pacific/Caribbean exchange, for which funding is presently being sought, will involve a minimum of ten young people and their chaperone who will visit the Cook Islands from 23 July to 4 August 2007. The dates have been selected to coincide with the Cook Islands Constitution celebrations.

The young people will be selected by their countries based on their proactive involvement in Small Islands Voice activities and their interest and knowledge in exploring different island cultures. Local competitions may be held to select the youth participants. It is anticipated that they will be aged between 15 and 18 years.

During their time in Cook Islands, the Pacific and Caribbean youth will:

  • Meet with youth from schools and other youth groups to exchange experiences about sustainable island living
  • Design and plan a joint activity that they and Cook Islands youth can implement jointly in their different countries in the 12-months after the visit
  • Keep daily illustrated diaries of the visit to share with their peers back home and put on the Small Islands Voice website
  • Visit sites of interest in Rarotonga and Aitutaki, e.g. the landfill site in Aitutaki, the recycling site in Rarotonga, Takitumu Conservation area, Aitutaki lagoon
  • Perform on International Night as part of the annual Mairenui Celebration of self-government
  • Develop a programme to share their experiences with their peers when they return home

As a follow-up to the exchange the youth from the Caribbean and Cook Islands will implement projects in their respective countries.

It is anticipated that through this exchange:

  • Youth from the Caribbean and Pacific islands will form strong links of friendship based on the sharing of lifestyles, cultures and traditions
  • Youth in the Pacific and Caribbean will learn first hand about the similarities and linkages between small islands in different parts of the world
  • The Caribbean youth will benefit by experiencing life in a different small island in another region of the world
  • The project will benefit a much wider group than the youth taking part in the exchange through a programmed sharing of experiences after the visit
  • The experiences gained from the exchange can be shared with other Small Islands Voice partners and this will also widen the benefits of the experience
  • The youth participating in the exchange will benefit by implementing follow-up projects in their respective islands and sharing their experiences with each other

This exchange is being organized by Imogen Ingram of the Island Sustainability Alliance C.I. Inc., Rarotonga, Cook Islands

 

To get involved, contact :

 

Coastal Regions and Small Islands Platform
UNESCO, Paris, France
csi1@unesco.org
fax: +33 1 45 68 58 08
 

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