Communications training
Climate Change Resilience

9 May 2024, Apia Samoa - The Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) is working to build the capacity of Readiness Officers from Pacific National Designated Authorities (NDAs) for the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to communicate their messages to communities and other key stakeholders effectively and understand the role of the media and how it relates to their work.

Readiness Officers from Nauru, Niue and the Republic of Marshall Islands (RMI) have been taking part in the “Empowering our Pacific Island narrative: Building Pacific Islands capacity to communicate effectively” training in Apia, Samoa.  Held from 8 – 9 May on the margins of the Pacific Climate Change Roundtable, the training is to strengthen the capacity of the participants to communicate their climate change messages clearly.

SPREP is the Delivery Partner for the Green Climate Fund country-Readiness projects, working closely with the National Designated Authorities. 

It is part of the projects’ activity to strengthen NDA capacity and embed national policies, processes and systems to enhance access to climate finances. Running the training in parallel to the PCCR has provided an ideal forum for Readiness Officers to practice and apply their learning in real-time at a regional event. 

As part of SPREP’s support as Delivery Partner, the SPREP Communications and Outreach Team will provide on-going support to these teams over the year.

“SPREP works in partnership with the GCF-country NDAs to help build their capacity in many ways, enabling them to meet their expectations in this role, one component of which includes communications,” said Ms Nanette Woonton, SPREP’s Communications and Outreach Adviser.

“Those that provide communications support or are required to implement the communications requirements from the GCF-country National Designated Authorities have requested capacity building assistance from SPREP and we are very pleased to be able to deliver this training at the PCCR.”

The training covered content development, a basic understanding of what makes good communications, taking photos, basic design work, social media and learning to build relationships with the media.  Clear communications overall can help enhance climate change resilience building.

Ms Kerina Rewera, of Nauru, said she found the training very useful and she looks forward to returning home to put her new skills to good use. 

“When it comes to the communications component of my work, I always found it difficult because sometimes I lacked the confidence to be able to do things like interviews, take photos and also use tools that are available to help with our work,” she said. 

“But having spent the past two days working with SPREP’s communications team, they have been extremely helpful in providing tips and ways to help me overcome some of these challenges. I am looking forward to returning home and putting some of these skills to good use.”

Mr Rolandon Adde, of the Republic of Marshall Islands, said he found the training useful and even more relevant especially taking place at the same time as the PCCR.

“I’ve had to absorb a lot of information, which I have found really useful. One of the best things for me is that we are able to put our skills to the test right away,” he said. 

“One of the sessions looked into how to get great interviews and after we sat through the presentation, I was then able to test myself by interviewing one of the delegates. I found the tips provided very useful and I think this is something that I can definitely build upon.”

One of the key goals of the training is to build the capacity of, and empowering, the participants to amplify their voices to disseminate information that will aid communities in their respective countries in preparing for the impacts of climate change and extreme weather events. 

The “Empowering our Pacific Island narrative: Building Pacific Islands capacity to communicate effectively” training was held in Apia, Samoa from 8 – 9 May. 

This was made possible through the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of the Government of New Zealand and the Green Climate Fund country Readiness projects.

For more information, please contact Ms Nanette Woonton, Communications and Outreach Adviser, at [email protected]

PCCR, Resilient Pacific, Pacific Climate Change Roundtable, GCF, Communications