ACOM Hosts Workshop on Disaster Preparedness in Honiara

Timothy Mitchell from the DFAT (Left) making a short visit to the workshop

In a proactive effort to enhance community resilience against natural disasters and climate change, the Anglican Church of Melanesia’s Board of Mission (ACOMBM), in partnership with the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO), successfully conducted a three-day workshop in Honiara last week. The Safe Strong Communities project, under ACOMBM, aimed to equip participants from three communities the project supports with essential skills in Community-Based Disaster Risk Management.

The workshop gathered 16 participants, including women, men, and youths from three communities: Koa Hill in the Diocese of Central Melanesia, Dadave in East Guadalcanal, and Maravovo in West Guadalcanal. These village disaster risk committees were selected to spearhead the initiative to build disaster-resilient communities in their respective areas.

Freda Folasi, Coordinator of the Safe Strong Community Project at ACOMBM, emphasized that the Gender and Climate Justice project’s goal is to transform communities through enhanced protection, inclusion, and climate justice in the Solomon Islands. The workshop’s goal was to increase community resilience and promote self-help. “This workshop aims to prepare community members, including women, youth, and people living with disabilities, to adapt to the impacts of climate change and to prepare for and respond to disasters,” Freda stated, highlighting the project’s inclusive approach.

She added, “This initiative underscores the importance of local community involvement in disaster preparedness and climate adaptation strategies, ensuring that vulnerable groups are not left behind. As the Solomon Islands continue to face the impacts of climate change, initiatives like the Safe Strong Communities project play a crucial role in safeguarding the well-being of its citizens. Through education, empowerment, and collective action, communities across the nation are becoming better prepared to withstand and recover from the adversities posed by natural disasters.”

The workshop covered various aspects of disaster risk management, including early warning systems, emergency response strategies, and long-term resilience building. Participants expressed their gratitude for the knowledge and skills acquired, with many highlighting their eagerness to implement these strategies within their communities. The workshop not only served as a learning platform but also as a testament to the power of collaboration among different sectors in addressing the pressing challenges of climate change and natural disasters.

The Safe Strong Communities Project, funded by the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, is implemented by ACOM with support from Anglican Overseas Aid (AOA).


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