Mobilising Youths to Support Government’s Early Recovery Efforts

Mar 4, 2016

The aftermath of Tropical Cyclone Winston in Levuka, Fiji (Photo/Emily Moli)

(Suva, Fiji) – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) working through the Fiji Government’s Ministry of Youth and Sports is providing FJD$100,000 to support the Government’s rehabilitation and recovery efforts following TC Winston. 

The funding, which is being made available through the UNDP-funded Fiji Youth Strengthening Project and the European Union-funded Strengthening Citizen Engagement in Fiji Initiative (SCEFI) Project, is expected to mobilize around 500 youths in hard-hit areas under the guidance of the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) and the use of the “Cash for Work” modality to provide financial assistance for youth workers to support the recovery work. 

The funding is expected to be facilitated in two-phases. The first phase will see around 300 youths being mobilized as soon as possible to assist with the debris-clearance and the Government’s re-construction efforts in devastated communities. The second phase will see 200 youths to be mobilized by the end of the second quarter of this year, to assist in the agricultural recovery work. 

Around FJD$30,000 will be used to procure the necessary equipment and supplies for the debris clearance and the seedlings and equipment’s later for the replanting efforts. 

The Minister for Youth and Sports, the Honourable Laisenia Tuitubou, welcomed the initiative saying “Having just returned from many of the areas devastated by the cyclone, this is a much-needed process to put our youth back to work and to be in a position to support their families.”

“The youths have already been active in cleaning up debris in schools and this needs to continue.  Now their efforts will be acknowledged and we thank our partners - UNDP, for working with us to make it happen,” said the Hon. Minister.

“This re-diversion of funding into immediate relief work is something UNDP is glad to consider at this time of need for Fijian people, particularly the youths who are the strength of the communities. The “Cash for Work” modality has been used by UNDP and government of Fiji after the Cyclone Ian in 2012-2013, and in many countries to provide immediate relief to providing some level of livelihood to devastated communities and at the same time assisting communities in their early recovery efforts”, indicated Ms. Akiko Fujii, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative.  

UNDP has been supporting building capacities of Fiji Youth through its partnership with the Ministry of Youths and Sports since 2012. This year in addition to the support being diverted towards the recovery efforts, other capacity building support will be provided to the youth-population in the areas of entrepreneurship, leadership and effective democratic participation. 

Contact information

Emily Moli, UNDP Knowledge Communications Analyst, tel: (679) 3227 504; email: emily.moli@undp.org  

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