Posted inStory / Kiribati

Training builds capacity of Kiribati protected area practitioners

Ministry and stakeholders can now make full use of the Pacific Islands Protected Area Portal to assist internal planning processes for protected and conserved areas

Protected area practitioners and government stakeholders of Kiribati are now equipped with the hands-on, practical knowledge of finding relevant up-to-date data, information resources and technical guidance on protected and conserved area management.

It follows a virtual training on the tools and features of the Pacific Islands Protected Area Portal (PIPAP), co-organised by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the Kiribati Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agriculture Development (MELAD), through its Environment and Conservation Division (ECD). In addition to ECD staff, the training engaged staff of the Phoenix Island Protected Area Office and the Kiribati Ministry of Fisheries & Marine Resource Development (MFMRD).

“The skills gained through this training will enable our ministry and stakeholders to make full use of the Pacific Islands Protected Area Portal to assist our internal planning processes for protected and conserved areas,” said the Director, ECD-MELAD, Nenenteiti Teariki Ruatu.

“The training has been very productive, especially for those who were able to participate today. My sincere gratitude to our stakeholders who participated from outside the MELAD-ECD, this is important considering that Protected Areas are a cross cutting issue affecting all facets of society, especially in small island governments in the Pacific region like Kiribati. This training addresses a key priority for Kiribati, and we are very thankful to SPREP and the BIOPAMA Programme for the timely assistance provided.”

PIPAP training in session. Photo credit: V.Jungblut/SPREP

During the training, a demonstration of the portal, followed by practical exercises provided the participants with a good understanding of its use and value as a preferred information source for assisting various aspects of their daily work related to protected and conserved areas. 

Participants learnt how to view, familiarise and conduct simple interpretation of their national protected area data, carry out basic and advanced searches for information resources using categories and tags, and to locate and access technical guidance and tools on different aspects of protected and conserved area management available through the portal. 

‘’The virtual training went very well today and received positive feedback.  we have been able to address this priority capacity need for Kiribati, which is a very good outcome. Furthermore, the active enthusiasm of the participants added to the success of the day” said Vainuupo Jungblut, Protected Areas Officer, SPREP.

“We’ll be providing follow up technical support to the ECD-MELAD and other stakeholders in the coming months in accordance with next steps identified from the training.” 

The Virtual Training, held on October 06 was funded through the BIOPAMA Programme, an initiative of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific (OACPS) Group of States financed by the European Union 11th European Development Fund. 

In the Pacific, the project is implemented by IUCN Oceania in partnership with SPREP and the European Commission Joint Research Centre. This partnership has assisted the SPREP Regional Programme of Support for Protected Areas to become a decision-making support hub, including delivering capacity building activities and training in the use of BIOPAMA support tools and services. It has also seen significant enhancements of the Pacific Islands Protected Area Portal, the region’s one-stop resource for protected area information.

This story was produced by Leanne, published at SPREP on 18 October 2021, reposted via PACNEWS.

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