Lisa Rosenthal: October 2007 Archives
This week we heard from Seacology's field representative in Fiji, Mr. Saula Vodonaivalu Jr. He has just visited Nukubalavu Village at Savusavu, Vanua Levu Island. In exchange for the village establishing a 25,600 acre marine reserve for twenty years, Seacology is providing funds to build a kindergarten building (below). The building is now almost complete with installation of fixtures and fencing still to be completed as soon as the building supervisor can return to the village.
Also, we received a brief report from our field representative for Micronesia, Mr. Simon Ellis. While Seacology's project with Palau Conservation Society (PCS) at
Lake Ngardok (right) has experienced some delays due to the building permitting process, all permits were granted last month and PCS is ready to begin purchasing materials and finalizing plans to begin construction of a solar-powered eco-friendly visitor and education center at the lake. Seacology is providing the funds for this construction in support of the 1,236-acre Lake Ngardok Nature Reserve.
Seacology receives updates from our island projects weekly. Here are a few from the last couple of weeks. In Kosrae, Federated States of Micronesia, Seacology funded the installation of a solar power energy system for the Utwe Walung Marine Park community center in 2000. The solar system had not been working for some time due to the lack of current community member training on the system's maintenance and the harsh weather conditions on the system's batteries. A cement building has been built to house the batteries and Seacology is providing a second grant to repair the system and provide a training session. Work is scheduled to begin in late October.
On Atiu Island, Cook Islands, an opening ceremony was held on September 21st for the brand new geriatric house for community members. This housing was built with Seacology funds in support of the community's decision to establish a 297-acre wildlife sanctuary and five mile restricted fishing zone on Takutea Island for twenty years. Two hundred members of the community attended the event as well as a member of Parliament, the Atiu Mayor and the Atiu Secretary. Field representative Allan Tuara spoke on behalf of Seacology and had the honor of turning the key to declare the building open.
Seacology receives news and updates from our island projects around the world regularly. Here are a few recent updates from September. The newly constructed geriatric ward at Atiu Village, Cook Islands, is complete and an opening ceremony is planned for the end of September. Allan Tuara, Seacology's field contact in the area, will be attending the opening ceremony acting as Seacology's representative at the ceremony and festivities. The construction of the geriatric ward was Seacology's grant to the Atiu Community for their decision to establish a 20 year 297-acre wildlife sanctuary and restricted fishing zone on and around Takutea Island, Cook Islands.
From North Sulawesi, Indonesia, Seacology's project contact sent us a detailed set of photos and descriptions of the completion of the infrastructure portion of the projects at Tulap, Tulaun and Ranawangko Villages. Included were scenes of villagers working together to finish their access road. This was the last task to complete after having already completed a series of infrastructure improvements earlier in the year using Seacology funding. In exchange for the grant for infrastructure improvements the three villages have established a permanently protected sea turtle beach area totaling 97 acres. Photos of the protected areas were also included.