The Institute of Applied Sciences RESCCUE Fiji Project recently completed a training workshop for Ra community members on Biodiversity Conservation and Protected Area Management. The training took place from 27-31 August 2018 at the Forestry Training Centre of the Ministry of Forests in Colo-i-Suva. It was attended by 8 members from the Nababa and Nalawa districts. As part of the Ra Integrated Coastal Management (ICM) plan, this capacity-building and awareness training aimed to capacitate and equip communities in Ra with relevant knowledge and skills in promoting ecosystem based approaches to climate change adaptation.
Participants were taken through topics related to the types of Biodiversity and their significance, to Protected Area Management and Governance, to Traditional Knowledge and Culture and their link to Biodiversity. In his address to the participants, Dr Isoa Korovulavula said that the Province of Ra has shown exceptional response to the works that the RESCCUE project is offering to communities. The fighting spirit in the community post Tropical Cyclone Winston was evident through the daily sharing and reflection by participants in the week-long training.
According to the participants, the overall response to the delivery of the course was good to excellent.
“This training has given me relevant knowledge and a better understanding of protected area management and governance” says Jale Masibalavu, the Burenitu Yaubula Committee Chairman. He added that they were ready to deliver what they have learnt to their respective communities when they return home. Another participant, Nemani Nadamu from Rokovuaka village stated that he was lucky to be part of this important training. “I feel equipped with comprehensive understanding of different biodiversity types and their significance”.
RESCCUE Fiji stands for the Restoration of Ecosystem Services against Climate Change, a project funded by the French Development Agency (AFD) and the French Global Environment Facility (FFEM) and is coordinated by the Institute of Applied Sciences and supported by Landcare Research New Zealand, Wildlife Conservation Society, Conservation International and Fiji Environment Law Association. The overall goal of RESCCUE is to contribute to increasing the resilience of Pacific Island Countries and Territories in the context of global climatic and environmental changes. RESCCUE aims at supporting adaptation to climate change through the development and implementation of Integrated Coastal Management, resorting especially to economic analysis and economic and financial mechanisms.