Vanuatu’s Tanna communities benefit from Climate Change, Climate and Geo-hazards awareness

Two government departments have combined to conduct awareness programmes on climate change and natural disasters in remote communities on Tanna in Vanuatu.

The training was offered by the Department of Climate Change (DoCC) and Vanuatu Meteorology & Geo-hazards Department (VMGD) in schools as well.

The aim was to inform and build community resilience through information on Climate, Climate Change and Natural Disasters.

Another aim was to educate the vulnerable communities to ensure resilience building occurs and to inform people that Climate Change is an urgent environmental matter that needs to be addressed using practical solutions that will assist them to address its impacts in future.

A total of 679 people from 16 communities and 7 schools attended the awareness programmes.

Most of people have experienced drought or shortage of water in the past months due to the location of their communities, which are prone to experiencing the effects of meteorological hazards in Vanuatu.

The communities often have access to very limited or no information on what they are experiencing, thus a lack of proper preparations and adaptation measures are in place.

Being at the remote sites, smaller islands and isolated communities in Vanuatu also contribute to having lack of knowledge about the impacts of climate change, the changing weather conditions and the possible disasters that may have brought about by natural events like Volcano, Earthquake and Tsunami.

Some of the communities in these areas commended the team that this is a first time that an awareness as this reached their community; a local from Lopangnuo Village, North Tanna.

Nelson Kalo, Climate Change Mitigation Officer at DOCC stressed the importance of reaching out to those vulnerable communities is paramount as people need the right knowledge in order for them to take any action to prepare and adapt to the impacts of climate change and natural disasters. “Information through awareness is a means to build the knowledge and understanding of people so this may influence their decisions to address impacts of climate change,” he said.

Similar program will be implemented in other remote and isolated islands around the country in future with the aim to build people’s understanding on Climate Change adaptation and mitigation practices and risk mitigation practices to natural disasters to enable people in vulnerable areas to ensure building up community resilience.

Photo supplied Caption: Climate change awareness


Tensly Sumbe