Foirobo Tribal Biodiversity Conservation Association Celebrates Handing over of Milestone Project

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BY JOHN HOUANIHAU

FOIROBO Tribal Biodiversity Conservation Association in North East Malaita, Malaita province has recently welcomed and celebrated a milestone project aimed to protect their forest as a solution to the effects of Climate Change.

In a ceremony to mark the handing over of a small grant project funded under the partnership between the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Global Environment Facility Programme (GEF), the founder and initiator of Foirobo Tribal Biodiversity Conservation Association (FTBCA), Franklin Fiuta described the arrival of the milestone funded project as an unbelievable with a challenging and tough road experience for them to finally receiving it.

“I am overwhelmed with gratitude to everyone sitting here looking at me today, plus those who are not able to make it today who are back in Honiara and Auki, who have contributed one way or the other towards the successful completion of the project.

“FTBCA continues to strive to meet its vision which is creating change for a better tomorrow. Our environment gives us the source for our sustenance, the land, the air, the rivers, and the sea.

“It is our responsibility to take good care of it and preserve it for now and the future generation. Climate change is affecting our islands and our weather patterns, it is our responsibility to mitigate its effect. Enough of logging, it is time to preserve our forest,’’ Franklin said.

He said: “I am overwhelmed with gratitude to everyone sitting here looking at me today, plus those who are not able to make it today who are back in Honiara and Auki, who have contributed one way or the other towards the successful completion of the project.

“FTBCA continues to strive to meet its vision which is creating change for a better tomorrow. Our environment gives us the source for our sustenance, the land, the air, the rivers, and the sea.

“It is our responsibility to take good care of it and preserve it for now and the future generation. Climate change is affecting our islands and our weather patterns, it is our responsibility to mitigate its effect. Enough of logging, it is time to preserve our forest,’’ he said.

Franklin said that Foirobo’s neighboring and sister sub-tribes like Liufimanu and Aikobu tribes in Baegu’u will benefit from the project.

Founder and initiator of Foirobo Tribal Biodiversity Conservation Association (FTBCA), Franklin Fiuta showing Tiba Mamu the conservation site.

“The five main communities and sub-tribes that will benefit from the project are Anosikaoere, Fafurongo, Canaan, Tasisi, and Watitiu Communities and including neighboring communities like Abuiruri, Kalifasia, Patmos, Lalade, and Usu’usue, Aenanono, Ote, Funiere, Takao and Wa’a,” he said.

Fiuta also highlighted that through the training, awareness activities, forest conservation, and livelihood plans, FTBCA aims to be a model of change for sons and daughters of the Foirobo tribe and also for Malaita province.

He thanked UNDP-SGP National Coordinator Teiba Manu and GEF Small Grants Programme officer, Ms. Lorain Bambu for assisting him throughout the project initiation stages.

“I would like to acknowledge your great help in assisting me throughout the project, replying to my emails, and answering my queries. You have been of great assistance towards this project.

Founder and initiator of Foirobo Tribal Biodiversity Conservation Association (FTBCA), Franklin Fiuta.

“I would like to acknowledge the communities and the tribes that have worked so hard and participated in the project activities and completed the tasks assigned to them, men, women, youths, and children involved, thank you for your time and contribution, for the team effort, it is much appreciated,’ he said.  

According to Fiuta, the Foirobo Tribe Biodiversity Conservation Association became a legally recognized NGO on 12 April 2021 and received its first funding from UNDP small grants program in August of 2021.

He said that the Conservation of Forest, Marine, or Water is a very special project for the Solomon Islands.

“This forest conservation project is special for the Solomon Islands because these are the last remaining tropical island forests we have. It brings a platform for all matter to be discussed and settled and it’s unique because it’s a first of its kind North East Malaita and the whole of North Malaita Region in Malaita Province,’’ he said.

“It brings back the unity of the people that lost along the way in many ways in our Modern Society. The moment we destroy those doing man-made activities like logging, excessive farming/gardening, and other related crisis, we spoil them,” Fiuta said.

He said that to prevent it we have to take extra measures by controlling and preventing the damages, we conserve our forest.

“We know that the main problem causing our nature and environment is climate change. So this conservation project helps to solve the climate change effects. As stated in one of our signboards, ‘Protecting our Forest a solution to Climate Change Effects’, this is a powerful statement.”


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