The Australian Government through the Direct Aid Programme (DAP) has funded a new permanent pigpen project, led by Mathew Nare, to assist the Nola community in the Reef islands, Temotu province, generate income by selling their pigs.
Australian High Commission First Secretary Political Jessica Carpenter handed over the pigpen on October 19 during a wonderful cultural celebration at Nola.
The communities of Nola thanked the Australian Government for funding the project, which will encourage small sustainable economic growth and increase food security for the local community.
Father Arthur Amble and Chief John Mark Paso, the community representatives of Nola Village, expressed their gratitude for Australia’s support during the handover ceremony.
“This is the first visit from the Australian High Commission and the first Australian funded project we received in our community,” said Chief Paso. “Australia has not forgotten us.”
Ms Carpenter thanked the people of Nola for their warm and friendly welcome, proudly demonstrating their culture. Congratulating the local community for successfully completing the project, she said:
“The Australian Government is proud to be working with the people of Nola to ensure that men and women in the communities learn and acquire new skills on modern livestock and farming methods. We look forward to seeing this farm up and running soon, providing a lasting benefit for the community into the future.”
As part of the trip to the Reef Islands, on October 20 the DAP team travelled to Matema Island where the Australian Government through DAP funded four 5,000 litre water tanks. Facing the impacts of climate change, including salination of ground water, these tanks are crucial for the water security of the community going forward. The Matema community welcomed the DAP team upon arrival with song, dance, entertainment and feasting.
The High Commission looks forward to visiting Matema again in the future, once the project is complete. As a remote island, transportation of materials has been a challenge. We applaud the community for its resilience and commitment in the face of hardship.
The Direct Aid Program is a small grants fund managed by the Australian High Commission in Solomon Islands, which supports community-led projects and seeks to improve living standards.
–AUSTRALIAN HIGH COMMISSION