NIPS and Babanga School on climate change


BABANGA Primary School in Western Province is less than five meters from the shoreline and during extreme weather waves reached the walk way which is less than 2 meters from the classrooms.

On Tuesday this week, Network for the Indigenous People Solomon (NIPS) met with children, parents and teachers of Babanga Primary School and deliberate on climate change and its effects on children.

The program is part of Climate Parent Fellowship, a new global movement which aimed at supporting vulnerable children to know climate change risk and at the same time champions of climate change advocacy in their respective countries and communities.

Children took part is an activity to know more about effects of climate change.

Children aged four to seven were introduced to common risk and challenges caused by climate change to children’s welfare and also taking part in role play to understand risk associated with climate change.

Coordinator and Vice President of NIPS Aydah Akao said the session was aimed at educating children about the effects of climate change at an early age to lessen stress and trauma on children when they experience extreme situation caused by climate change.

She said children are at the receiving end of climate change and that they must be informed about climate change and its effects to communities.

Akao said the program was interesting and at the same time emotional as children who are innocent to global failure expressed what they love living on an Island that is at risk of climate change.

“I’m very pleased with the short session and the interest shown by students and parents towards session.

“It was heartwarming to see the children expressed what they love about their home which is now at risk of sea level rise through their drawings.

“I can see their interest and love for their home.

“Most of the children draw their parent and village life such as paddling a canoe, playing soccer with their friends and swimming in the sea.

“A little girl draw a flower and a girl playing next to a school.

“These drawing shows somehow depicts how vulnerable our children are amidst effects of climate change.

“They love their homes and schools but climate change will soon robe these children from what they love,” Akao said.

She said children’s voices must be heard as the impact of climate change to children is three times more than adults.

Mrs Akao talking to the children and parent during the program.

Chairperson of Babanga Primary School, Riakai Waituti Euta expressed his gratitude towards the program saying that Babanga School and community as a whole do feel the effect of climate change.

He said the program opened the eyes of his community about the risks related event that caused by climate change.

“This island is getting smaller as the ocean continues to gulp the coastline. Sea level is also getting closer to our homes.

“I see it fitting for NIPS to come down not only to educate our children but also adults who called this place their homes.

“On behalf of Babanga Primary School, I acknowledge NIPS for choosing our school to be part of their program.

“I’m looking forward to working with NIPS in any future programs,” Euta said.

A teacher at Babanga Primary School, Partina Pitakaka shared similar sentiment saying that the program was very helpful and important not only for the children but also parents, teachers and children.

“Babanga community suffers the effect of climate change but there is no proper information or access to information to help the school and community make informed decision has been lacking.

“I like to say, our community is not exposed to proper information. I understand that there are lots of NGOs that deals with climate change in Solomon Islands but only few came to educate us on the risks associated with climate change.

Pitakaka spent two years teaching at Babanga School and she said sea level rise an ongoing issue that continues to threaten the school and also Babanga community.

She also acknowledge NIPS for the effort put together to bring the information to Babanga Primary School.

NIPS Coordinator met one of the teachers upon arrival at Babanga Primary School

Network for the Indigenous People Solomons, NIPS for short is a local CSO established in 2007 with a passion to work with people in local communities in areas like climate change, biodiversity, conservation, women empowerment and climate resilience focusing on food security.

The organization holds one primary goal and that is to give voices to local people in Solomon Islands.

Since its establishment NIPS has projects across Solomon Islands including Isabel Province, Malaita Province and Temotu Province. One of NIPS premium project is the protection of special tree species known locally as tubi tree which can be found in Isabel

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