Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

#PacificMission: New Zealand announces Climate Change, youth and Pacific Games support for the Solomon Islands

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air
Deputy Prime Minister Carmel Sepuloni and the NZ Delegation received a warm reception from representatives of the Solomon Islands. Photo: Gladys Hartson
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Gladys Hartson | Senior Journalist

The New Zealand Government has made a series of announcements providing financial support during Deputy Prime Minister Carmel Sepuloni’s three-country Pacific Mission.

The six day mission kicked off in Honiara, Solomon Islands this week and will then head to Fiji and Tonga.

The year’s theme is, ‘Reconnection, Resilience and Partnership’, focusing on climate change adaptation, education and support for Youth.

$15 million dollars is set aside for climate finance and will go directly to the Solomon Islands Provincial Capacity Fund.

Green MP’s Teanau Tuiono (left) and James Shaw (right) with Rodrick Rollands from the Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change. Photo: James Shaw Facebook

Deputy Prime Minister Carmel Sepuloni alongside Minister for Climate Change James Shaw reinforced New Zealand’s commitment to tackle the threat of climate change together in the Pacific.

Minister Sepuloni says, “At the heart of this Mission and our shared focus as a Pacific region, is the importance of supporting local and indigenous-led solutions to support effective climate action.”

Minister Shaw says there is a lot that New Zealand can learn from our Pacific neighbours when it comes to resilience and dealing with the impact of climate change. He says, New Zealand had first hand experience of this dealing with the on-going devastation from Cyclone Gabrielle.

Minister Sepuloni and other delegates visited the St Vincent’s Early Childhood Education Centre earlier this week. Photo: Gladys Hartson

Support for Young People

New Zealand has also committed $2.4 million to support young people in the Solomon Islands not in education, employment or training. Funding will support the development and delivery of programmes and courses in Solomon Islands and Tonga.

A new partnership between New Zealand and the Pacific Community (SPC) will include a multi-country youth empowerment programme.

Minister for Pacific Peoples Barbara Edmonds, who is on the mission, says the initiative with the SPC will see a youth empowerment programme delivered, beginning in the Solomon Islands, providing opportunities for youth to unskilled and access decent work.

Minister for Pacific Peoples Barbara Edmonds shared the proud heritage of her great grandfather who hails from the Malaika province in Solomon Islands. Photo: Barbara Edmonds FB

During a visit to the Honiara Youth Hub, Minister Edmonds says,” Aotearoa New Zealand is committed to supporting our Pacific whanau to develop pathways for young people to thrive and participate meaningfully in their communities.”

The Minister also shared the proud heritage of her great grandfather who hails from the Malaika province in Solomon Islands.

Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare with Deputy Prime Minister Carmel Sepuloni. Photo: Supplied
In a seperate joint stand-up, Foreign Affairs Minister Jeremiah Manele said the country is looking forward to hosting to 2023 Pacific Games. Photo: Alice Lolohea

Support for more accessible Pacific Games

With the 17th Pacific Games scheduled for Honiara in November, New Zealand has committed $3 million to go towards making the games more accessible and disability inclusive.

The Pacific games will be the first since the global Covid-19 pandemic and Minister Sepuloni says she is excited not only for the Solomon Islands but also for Pacific sport.

Addressing media during a joint stand up alongside Minister Sepuloni, Solomon Islands Foreign Affairs Minister Jeremiah Manele says they will be ready come November to welcome the more than five thousand athletes expected to take part in the games.

The stadium is still under construction with donor support provided by countries such as China, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

The Pacific Games will be the largest sporting event to be held in the Solomon Islands.

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