11 Feb 2012

Kids eco-camp builds a brighter future for Fijian IBA

By BirdLife Pacific
A bunch of 40 energetic kids from Nabukelevu, on the Fijian island of Kadavu, recently completed a two day eco-camp organized by the BirdLife International Fiji Programme with kind support from the Pacific Development Conservation Trust (PDCT) of New Zealand. Mt Nabukelevu is one of Fiji’s 14 Important Bird Areas and is the largest area of montane forest in west Kadavu. It is also the only known nesting site in Fiji for the Polynesian Storm-petrel and hosts the four birds that are only found on the Fijian island of Kadavu. The camp was the second one held in Nabukelevu, and was an opportunity for the kids to exchange ideas on environmental practices and increase their commitment and passion for conserving their surroundings. “The camp was a great success, the kids thoroughly enjoyed themselves and learnt a lot from the activities organized”, said Miliana Ravuso, Senior Conservation Officer for the BirdLife Fiji Programme. Activities for the camp included puppet making, composting, recycling, tree planting and bird watching. The children were from the four schools of Nabukelevuira Primary School, Nabukelevu District School, Ratu Eliki Memorial School and Levuka Primary School. Teachers, parents and the wider communities came out in full support during the camp. The BirdLife International Fiji Programme established the Nabukelevu Site Support Group (SSG) to support the work at Mt Nabukelevu. However, working with children in Fiji is a new area of their work at the site. “These children are our future, and it’s what they believe now that can change our tomorrow”, said Ms. Ravuso The camp signaled the close of a successful PDCT project in Nabukelevu. PDCT also funded the production of a pocket friendly Kadavu bird guide and bird stickers and children were issued with environmental library books and gardening materials. The camp was officially closed by the Tui Ra, the Turaga ni Yavusa Nabukelevuira (Chief of Ra Province, and Spokesperson of Nabukelevuira village), who encouraged the children to take lessons learnt from the camp and use them in their respective schools and communities. He encouraged them to protect their environment and keep Kadavu as beautiful as it is now. Subscribe to The BirdLife Pacific Quarterly E-Newsletter