Naiyarabale villagers reap reforestation project benefits

Minister for Forestry Kalaveti Ravu. Picture: FIJI GOVERNMENT

Within weeks of embarking on a reforestation project in collaboration with the Government, Naiyarabale villagers in the heart of Cakaudrove have started to witness the initiative bear fruit through the ground-breaking ceremony for a much-needed teachers quarters at their school.

Domonisavu District School with a school roll of about 60 students and four teachers have encountered a number of cyclones over the years, leading to the demolishment of one of the four quarters recently.

The reforestation project titled ‘Noqu Kalou, Noqu Wacawaca Reforestation and Investment’ is the brainchild of Reverend Ilitomasi Nute and Naiyarabale villagers where the landowners had dedicated 350 hectares of their mataqali land for reforestation.

The agreement signed between the project committee and the Government through the Ministry of Forestry was conducted last month, and within two weeks and four days of seedling planting and land clearing, they received $10,000 which has been dedicated towards the construction of a teacher’s quarters.

Minister for Forestry Kalaveti Ravu applauded the villagers for their forward thinking in deciding to plant trees on barren land that would offer both financial and environmental benefits.

Reverend Nute who is also the project chairman said being located in the interior and with much-needed development in the community, they had decided that a reforestation project was the best move for the village.

He said at the top of their priority was to upgrade the school, as education was vital for communal growth.

Meanwhile, more than 16 million trees had been planted around the country towards Government’s commitment to plant 30 million trees in 15 years.

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