A project to help people recovering from floods in Fiji
A project has started to help people complete their recovery from the floods that hit Fiji's Western districts in March.
It will provide a temporary source of cash income in exchange for work.
The people eligible for the support were identified in a survey by UN Women and it will be run by the UNDP.
Sainimili Nabou, the governance Team Leader, for the UNDP, says the project is funded by Ausaid and UNDP.
She explained how it will work to Steve Rice.
Speaker:Sainimili Nabou, the governance Team Leader, for the UNDP in Fiji
NABOU: This is basically an upscale project that had begun in March this year in response to the floods that hit the Western Division. This is the second implementation where Nadi is now the new location to replicate the program. Basically short-term recovery, livelihood recovery program, about 850 women and men will be employed for the next two weeks. The program is aimed to really meet the women's needs, especially the farmers, the market vendors and their families living in these flood-affected areas in the Nadi community.
RICE: What happened to them? Why do they need the help?
NABOU: A survey was conducted to determine people who would be beneficiaries to this program. What was determined was their livelihoods were seriously affected, especially the agricultural sector. It was identified that vulnerable groups is this group of women to be helped in the Western Division.
RICE: So do they grow their own food and then sell it at the market, or are there some people who grow and other people who sell?
NABOU: The beneficiaries are basically identified in different types in different locations. So the actual activity that will happen is the rural communities who are the growers, the farmers, will basically plant crops and they'll be provided cash. While the market vendors they will work to clean up the markets in consultation with the municipal council to clean the market area and then in exchange for cash.
RICE: And what did the floods do to the farms?
NABOU: What was revealed from the findings their crops were mainly affected, the crops that had to be sold in the market, basically vegetables, root crops, fruit that they will sell in the market.
RICE: Ok so have they started to replant the farms now?
NABOU: Yes, exactly, that's correct.
RICE: But it must take some time for the new crop to come on I guess?
NABOU: Yes of course for the three months time, that was the turnaround time for the harvest of the crops that were identified. And because this is the second location, the first location which was conducted in Raki Raki a few kilometres away from the Nadi Town where 300 Fijian market vendors and farmers were helped in the same program, the same methodology.
RICE: Ok and what happened to Nadi market, what did the flood do to it?
NABOU: Ok the whole market was underwater, which meant that at the end of the floods there was debris to be cleared. So that has been taken care of by the government officials and the municipal council. So three months down the line there are still areas that need to be cleaned up, like the mud and the soil that needed to be cleaned from the market area.
RICE: And so how have the people been surviving, the market vendors and the farmers?
NABOU: Well they probably have other alternative ... the very main reason for providing this assistance was just to help them over this time period, to give them immediate cash because of the excessive floods. to buy things for their children, to replace existing books and those kind of materials that were lost in the flood, just to help them for this short term.
RICE: And when do you expect the market to get up to full operations again?
NABOU: Well about 80 per cent of a lot of the activities, it is in full operation, but what is happening is the phased approach that the municipal council plus the market vendors will start the program from this week. So hopefully in the next two weeks we should have a clean market with a better conducive environment for selling and of course the plants, the cash crops and vegetables that will be planted in the rural areas will be up and running.