PWDSI represented at the Pacific Disability Forum

BY JOHN HOUANIHAU

The people with disabilities in the Solomon Islands were represented at the Pacific Disability Forum which runs from 8th – 10th July at Tanao Waterfront Hotel, Lautoka in Fiji.

Casper Fa’asala Chief Executive Officer of People with Disabilities Solomon Islands (PWDSI), told Island Sun in an exclusive interview on Wednesday this week.

“The Meeting happened here in Lautoka, Fiji at the Tanoa Waterfront Hotel. It Starts on Monday 8 July and concludes on Wednesday 10 July,’’ he said.

He said that the Pacific Disability Forum (PDF) has a vision for achieving disability inclusion and equity within climate and disaster resilience.

According to Fa’asala, this vision is fixed in its draft strategy for Disability Inclusive Resilience (Pacific Disability Inclusive Resilient Development Strategy (the Strategy) which covers ten years from 2023-2033.

“PDF acknowledges that this vision cannot be achieved without the help of partners to realize its vision in the Pacific, which is one of the most disaster-prone regions in the world,’’ he said. 

He stated that the ten-year draft Strategy is an extensive and detailed document that strives to outline strategic actions in pursuit of its working vision for achieving disability inclusion within climate and disaster resilience

“The draft strategy also offers opportunities to review and include regional gender commitments made by Pacific leaders through the Revitalized Pacific Leaders Gender Equality Declaration and the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific continent.

“The review of the draft strategy importantly also offers opportunities for self-assessments using the Pacific Resilience Standards (PRS), a practical tool that aims to strengthen the effectiveness, quality, and integrity of resilience-building efforts and interventions such as the formulation of a regional disability inclusive resilience development strategy.

“The regional convening is supported through UN Women Fiji MCO, and one of its programs, the Women’s Resilience to Disasters (WRD) program. In bringing a collective and resilient pathway to the PDF vision, UN Women is supporting PDF to convene the regional event of partners, stakeholders, and Organisations of Persons with Disabilities (OPDs),’’ he said

Mr Fa’asala said that it is proposed that this convening will ensure that this vision and the accompanying strategy are inclusive, equitable, gender-responsive, and resilient through the ten years of implementation.

He stated that the key objectives of the workshop of the three-day regional convening will have these specific objectives: 

1. To create a space that facilitates a direct and trusted conversation between stakeholders and partners with ODPs and the Pacific Disability Forum (PDF), that will provide insights into strategic thinking for a ten-year disability-inclusive resilience strategy.

2. To ensure a review and strengthening of the draft Disability Inclusive Resilience Development Strategy, which considers women’s resilience to disasters and is gender-responsive. 

3. To convene a capacity support dialogue and learning on resource mobilization for Pacific ODPs that will contribute to the resilience of their work. 

“The event is expected to deliver the following results,(a) Support the PDF and regional ODPs to have a resilient and trusted space with partners and stakeholders that will be in place throughout the ten-year implementation of the disability-inclusive resilience development strategy. (b). The formulation of a gender-responsive, disability-inclusive resilient development strategy.  (c). The sharing of learnings and contextual ideas and best practices for resource mobilization.  (d). Improved understanding of WRD by partners and stakeholders across PDF and the regional ODPs,’’ said Mr Fa’asala.

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