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One million dollar grant to SOPAC

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SOPAC has received a grant from The Asia Foundation of US$1,059,696, over three years, in support of the SOPAC’s Disaster Reduction Programme.

At the signing of the Letter of Agreement and Project Document, SOPAC Director, Dr Russell Howorth, said that the grant would enable SOPAC to further develop its leadership role in disaster risk management training for Pacific island countries, as well as strengthen SOPAC’s support to its island Members in disaster risk reduction capacity building.
“It is expected that the SOPAC Disaster Reduction Programme will assist countries to implement national level disaster risk management training to boost capacity at national level,” said Dr Howorth. “The three year programme will also assist at-risk communities to establish and maintain low-cost early warning and alert systems for disaster risk reduction.”

Ms Kathryn Hawley, Director Pacific Program, The Asia Foundation, said that the grant to SOPAC had been made possible through the generous support of the US Agency for International Development (USAID) Office of the US Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), under the Pacific Disaster Risk Management Programme, as implemented by The Asia Foundation.

Mrs Kathryn Hawley, Director, Pacific Programme, the Asia Foundation and Dr Russell Howorth, Director, SOPAC, signing the Letter of Agreement and Project Document.



Pitcairn Islanders are experiencing longer, more severe periods of drought, as illustrated below. The effects can be devastating on many fronts, from crop production to drinking water consumption or fighting fires. Highly dependent on local water resources, the 48-strong population is fighting back, with the support of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

The objectives of this partnership are three-fold: (1) closely monitor the climate, the weather and water resources on the island; (2) utilise this knowledge to bolster the island’s water catchment, storage, treatment and distribution capacity; and (3) enhance the island’s water and meteorology governance arrangements.