Youth groups receive grants for environmental projects

Dec 18, 2015

Recipients of the grants. Photo credit: UNDP/F.Mondello/2015

Today two environmental youth organisations, the Youth Climate Action Network and the Tokelau National Youth Group, have received grants from the UNDP Global Environment Facility Small Grants Programme (SGP) to implement climate actions in households and communities. 

The Youth Climate Action Network (YCAN) with representatives from 12 villages in Upolu and Savaii received a grant of USD 47,500.  The Network will implement environmental projects focused on four main areas: waste management, rehabilitation of ecosystems, replanting and conservation of forests to protect watersheds and birdlife, and agricultural activities based upon sound ecological principles to support livelihoods generation for unemployed youth.  

YCAN was established in September 2015 in response to the need to have more young people leading environmental and climate adaptation actions in Samoa.  Its mission is to demonstrate that youth, given a chance to lead such initiatives and with good support from partners and communities, can make a difference at community level and for the society at large.

With the grant received, the Youth Climate Action Network will also promote solutions for clean energy - such as biogas - advocate for policy changes in support of improved environments and livelihoods and, finally, assist community leaders and the government in environmental monitoring.

The Tokelau National Youth Group (TNYG) is a network of  60 young people from the three atolls,  supported by their respective local governments called “Taupulega” as well as the Government of Tokelau. The group received an SGP grant for USD 47,400 to implement a soil-less garden technique for households which uses minimal water as both soil and water are very limited in Tokelau.  

The project of the TNYG will initially focus on 30 households and schools on each atoll and aims at building capacities among youth teams to extend expertise and assistance to other households in order to strengthen climate change resilience nationally.

GEF Small Grants Programme Co-Chair and SUNGO CEO, Faafetai Alisi said: “We are so pleased to be providing young people - who already very active in the environment - the opportunity to do more for their communities and, at the same time, create awareness and jobs. We want to especially thank the Australian Government for the funds provided to these youth initiatives under the Mekong Asia Pacific/SIDS-Climate Based Adaptation fund.  We are very appreciative of the wonderful connections youth are making with government agencies, UNDP and all others partners assisting them.  Faafetai tele lava!”

Jovilisi Suveinakama, Consultant and Advisor to the Ulu of Tokelau, added:  “The commencement of this initiative will provide a platform for Tokelau Youth and an opportunity to build local capacity not only to further understand climate change and its adverse effects but to also to adapt and be able to mitigate these effects through sustainable and practical actions that are crucial to preserve and protect our fragile environment”.  

At youth awards ceremony were also present Sefo Vulu, General Manager for the Office of Taupulega Atafu, members of the Tokelauan community, Samoa government representatives, UNDP and SGP staff and fifteen representatives of the Youth Climate Action network.

 

Contact information

·         Ms. Ofusina Ieremia, SGP Programme Associate

E-mail: ofusina.ieremia@undp.org - Phone: (685) 23670 ext. 38 

·         Francesca Mondello, UN Communication Specialist

E-mail: Francesca.mondello@one.un.org - Phone: (685) 23670 ext. 66 

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