SUVA, 26 October 2016 – Pacific countries have pledged to step up efforts to deal with the challenge posed by climate change and the threat of disasters, in order to ensure that their development is sustainable.
In a joint declaration wrapping up the three-day Pacific Platform for Disaster Risk Management, hosted by Fiji, the 17 countries reaffirmed their commitment to build a stronger and more resilient region in the face of rising climate impacts.
Recurrent earthquakes, floods, typhoons, and volcanoes present significant challenges to vulnerable populations in the East Asia and the Pacific (EAP) region. Some countries also face civil unrest and associated humanitarian impacts, as well as limited government capacity to respond to disasters. Between FY 2007 and FY 2016, USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/ OFDA) and USAID’s Office of Food for Peace (USAID/ FFP) provided humanitarian assistance in response to a diverse range of natural and complex emergencies in the region.
The use of Cash Transfer Programming (CTP) to provide humanitarian assistance so that people may access the goods and services they need before, during and following a crisis has been gaining momentum over the past decade.
Despite the considerable use of cash and vouchers by government and non-state actors in major emergencies in Asia, the use of CTP in humanitarian response in the South Pacific islands has been relatively small-scale, and limited to only a few countries.
The latest Caritas State of the Environment Report for Oceania has found widespread hunger and thirst across the Pacific in 2015/2016. The report Hungry for justice, thirsty for change shows extreme weather events, combined with ongoing climatic changes, are contributing to a severe loss of food and water supplies in the region.
The executive director of the Catholic aid agency Caritas, Julianne Hickey, who is on Tarawa, says the country is currently very dry as conditions oscillate towards a possible La Niña.
Read the story at Radio New Zealand.
27SM Niue News: 2015 SPREP Annual Report is now launched
The SPREP Annual Report for 2015 is now available online having been presented at the 27th SPREP Meeting in Niue on Day one. The Report, available in both English and French outlines the activities and project implemented with members and partners in 2015 as the region strives to achieve the SPREP vision - a Pacific environment that sustains our livelihoods and natural heritage in harmony with our cultures.
TC Winston Highlights
The Fiji Government held a series of lessons learned workshops for the overall response that culminated in a national workshop attended by partners involved in the humanitarian response. The Education and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) clusters also held their separate lessons learned review workshops.
UNICEF completed its internal After Action Review.
A school-feeding programme is running in 38 schools in worstaffected areas, benefitting nearly 6,000 students.
Pacific island countries are working hard to address the escalating realities of climate change, including the impact on land, livelihoods, and on the food and water security of their most vulnerable communities. The need for accessible, predictable, adequate and appropriate financial support to meet the climate crisis is urgent and growing.
Pacific syndromic surveillance report
Week 31, ending 7 August 2016
The following syndromes have been flagged:
Climate Change Matters.
The month of July has brought new and expanding partnerships for SPREP as you will read between SPREP and the Australian Government’s key research institution: the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) and a second with German Government’s international aid agency (GIZ). We are working together to strengthen support to Pacific island countries’ national efforts to tackle climate change and ultimately improve their overall resilience.
Over 20 health professionals from all six provinces of Vanuatu are in Port-Vila this week to scale up public health surveillance with the Pacific Data for Decision-Making (DDM) training programme.
The week-long training is jointly organised by Vanuatu Ministry of Health and the Pacific Community (SPC) as part of the recovery activities in response to Cyclone Pam project funded by the German Development Bank (KfW).