Australia helps churches to be ready to respond


Churches have been further prepped on how to respond to disasters and help save lives.
This is made possible with the help of Australia under its sponsored programme CANDO [Church agencies network disaster operations].

Church leaders attending a day-long retreat meeting on October 11 at Honiara Hotel were given a comprehensive overview of CANDO operations and programmes in Solomon Islands.

CANDO Programme Coordinator Lionel Dau presented a summary on the key focus areas CANDO has been implementing, and principles and core values CANDO has abided with.

Mr Dau touched on the activities and responses CANDO has been doing in phase-1 over the last five years and the current activities the organisation will continue to implement in phase-2 for the next five years.

Attending the meeting were United Church of Solomon Islands (UCSI), Moderator Rev Armstrong Pitakaji, Catholic Archbishop Chris Cardon, ACoM Archbishop, the Most Rev Leonard Dawea, ACoM General Secretary Dr Abraham Haruiasi, UCSI General Secretary Mr Braena Bird, SSEC General Secretary Mr Thomas Weape and the SICA General Secretary Dr Edward Kolohai.

Speaking to Island Sun, SICA General Secretary Mr Kolohai said, “we come together to meet and to discuss disaster resilience in Solomon Islands.

“The project on disaster is funded by CANDO Australia where it helps us in the Solomon Islands especially with what the churches can do in face of disasters and how they can work together as partners.”
Kolohai said apart from the presentation the leaders also used the meeting to discuss other internal issues of the association.

Chairman of SICA, Rev Armstrong Pitakaji said, “as Chair of SICA, I would like to acknowledge our SICA General Secretary Rev Dr Edward Kolohai for arranging this one-day SICA Executive Meeting.

“It was a successful meeting for us as we reflected on the mission entrusted to us. And thank you to you all our Church General Secretaries who attended this meeting.

“Finally thank you CANDO officer Mr Lionel Dau for supporting the meeting.”

In Solomon Islands, CANDO is supported by the Australian Government and is an Australian Government initiative through Disaster READY program under the Australian Humanitarian Partnership (AHP).

Disaster READY is focused on ensuring disaster preparedness is localised and led by relevant local and national stakeholders by working to ensure that disaster preparedness and management is inclusive of all within a community, including women, children and people living with disabilities, involving them in preparedness activities so their specific needs are understood and accounted for.

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