A community builds a 'bridge': Responding to sea level rise in East Kwaio

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Villagers in Solomon Islands are resilient and resourceful. As governments struggle to provide the most basic of services in low resource setting such as Solomon Islands, the benefits of low-cost, community-led responses are significant.

Community members in rural Solomon Islands are facing real challenges as the sea rises. Women struggle to return from the garden with their produce during high tide time, with one woman from East Kwaio explaining,

"Mifala putim basket lo head and swim kam. Sea save
waepim face, go insait lo eye, but mifala mus carryim
kaikai for olketa pikini. Mifala swim lo high tide."

(We put our basket on our heads and swim. The sea
splashes our face and goes in our eyes, but we must carry
the food for our children. We swim in the high tide.).

A new article by members of the Atoifi Health Research group reports a case study of community action to mitigate against sea level rise in East Kwaio, Malaita. Authors of the article include East Kwaio community leaders Ms Rowena Asugeni, Mr James Asugeni, Mr Tommy Esau and Mr Frank Timothy.

Details of the article are:
A community builds a “bridge”: an example of community-led adaptation to sea-level rise in East Kwaio, Solomon Islands
Rowena Asugeni, Michelle Redman-MacLaren, James Asugeni, Tommy Esau, Frank Timothy, Peter Massey & David MacLaren

For a copy of the article, please email rowenaasugeni@gmail.com or michelle.maclaren@jcu.edu.au

Photo: Woman walking on the new bridge between Abitona and Wyfolonga villages, East Kwaio (Photo credit: James Asugeni)