Disaster preparedness and response

ILO starts joint implementation of Cyclone Winston recovery programmes in Fiji

Four months after the category 5 tropical cyclone (TC) Winston struck Fiji, the ILO through its joint programme with government has kick started implementation in two of the top five most effected provinces.

News | 30 June 2016
Entrepreneurs in the Ra Province, Fiji
Funded through the ILO-Japan Social Safety Net Fund (SSN), a partnership was established with government’s Integrated Human Resource Development Programme (IHRDP) and start planned training programmes in the provinces of Ra on the main island of Vitilevu and Bua on the island of Vanualevu.

Established by the ILO in 2000, the IHRDP is institutionalised within the Ministry of Strategic Planning and funded through government core budget with its officers based in the four national divisions. The IHRDP was a key partner in the Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) and provided exclusive data on damages and losses sustained by micro enterprises due to cyclone Winston. The micro enterprises identified for support under the joint programme were identified through the PDNA.

The micro enterprises supported are, one fishing micro enterprise in Ra (Tikina Bureiwai) and two enterprises in Bua, one honey micro enterprise called Tikina Bubulau and seaweed micro enterprise called Tikina Dama. These micro enterprises involving a total of 16 villages collectively and directly employed 70 persons, indirectly employed 17 people and 800 people depended on the income of the micro enterprises.

Identifying micro enterprises in Ra Province, Fiji
According to the PDNA and in terms of livelihoods affected, 57 per cent relate to the agricultural sector [inclusive of livestock (23 per cent) and fisheries (51 per cent), 17 per cent to commerce, ten per cent to manufacturing, and eight per cent to tourism and transportation equally. The total accumulated damages and losses to informal Small & Micro Enterprises (SME) is F$14.6 million. Therefore, people’s incomes will decline significantly in the affected sectors/areas, due to their linkages through the food production chain. The two year Disaster Recovery Framework (DRF), explicitly states that “Prioritization of programmes activities will be guided by the geographical analysis conducted for the PDNA.”

According to the quality of life index, the top five affected provinces, including reduction in personal income are: 
  1. Ra  -  10 per cent
  2. Lomaiviti – 33 per cent
  3. Cakaudrove – 26 per cent
  4. Bua – 22 per cent
  5. Ba – 8 per cent
The value adding training support for the above three micro enterprises include Skills training,  Start & Improve Your Business (SIYB), Value Chain Analysis (VCA) and Diversification. The support also links the direct beneficiaries to micro insurance and superannuation schemes as a form of social safety net for the next disaster.

On 24th June, the ILO under took a joint field mission with IHRDP, Fiji Commerce & Employers Federation (FCEF) and National Youth Council (NYC) to 3 youth micro enterprises affected by TC Winston. This included Tikina Bureiwai micro enterprise.

Mr Satoshi Sasaki, the OIC for the ILO Office for Pacific Island countries observed that, Value chain analysis (VCA) is a useful tool in exploring under-developed markets. Availability and access to the market is the key to ensure the expansion of income generating activities, thus create new jobs. For example, honey in the Fiji market is under supplied. A honey processor in Lautoka was looking for more local suppliers. A young unemployed can start Bee-keeping business with the initial inputs of around FJ$500. The question is how we could identify such economically viable sectors and focus our inputs in generating new jobs for youths.

Mr William Nayacatabu, President of the National Youth Council of Fiji, said after the field mission “We thank ILO and FCEF together with IHRDP for the opportunity given to us and I was really touched by the hard working staffs especially the Projects that we visited, in Bureiwai and the Poultry Farm in Ba not forgetting Mr Malawiya's Honey Bees from Lautoka. The Poultry farm was the best that I see where they were assisted in the first 122 meter long shed and provided employment to 3 Youths, they bought a 4x4 Twin Cab and they were able to replicate the same initiative and were able to build another 122 meter long shed, and planning to build 3 more sheds same as the current two. This is what I really like where we can see the results of hardworking and team work.”

In the next few weeks, more activities will be delivered in the effected provinces including Cakaudrove and Ba.