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Palau represents Pacific in Small Islands Voice project

Palau has been selected to represent the Pacific Islands in the start up of UNESCO's inter-regional Small Islands Voice initiative.

Ensuring the voice of the general public in small islands is heard and becomes a driving force in island development is the initiative's ultimate goal.

It is supported by UNESCO's CSI (Environment and development in coastal regions and in small islands) programme. The focus is on small islands in the Caribbean, Pacific, and Indian oceans.

Activities have commenced in:

  • The twin-island federation of St. Kitts and Nevis, with a population of 45,000, in the Caribbean Sea;
  • Palau, 12 main islands and more than 200 limestone islets, and with a population of 20,000, in the Pacific Ocean;
  • And in the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles, with 115 islands and 85,000 people.

Committees are being established in each of these three start-up countries.

They include representatives from government, non-governmental and community-based organizations, media, private sector, and ordinary citizens representatives.

They are to organize and coordinate activities on-the-ground.

One of the first actions is to conduct a geographically representative interview survey to determine the main environment and development issues of concern to the general public.

Besides working as a tool for evaluation purposes, these surveys will allow each island country to prioritize the key issues of concern to the public.

This will then become the focus of specific activities, such as:

  • community meetings and discussions,
  • newspaper columns,
  • bulletin boards,
  • radio call-in shows,
  • and television programmes.

All the various activities will be designed to initiate debate, and to provide opportunities to listen, take note and document the voice of the general public.

Another focus of Small Islands Voice is on young islanders, particularly those in the age range 12-21 years.

It is planned to conduct trial Internet discussions in each region, so that young persons in separate islands can talk freely to each other about their views and concerns.

In the first instance these trials will be organized in conjunction with schools.

Source: PINA Nius Online, Suva, 26 April 2002


To get involved, contact :


National Co-ordinator
Mr Joe Chilton
Palau Community College
PO Box 9
Koror, 96940
Republic of Palau
T: + 680 488 2470
F: + 680 488 6563

Ms. Tiare Holm
Palau Conservation Society
P.O. Box 1811,
Koror, 96940
Republic of Palau
T: ++ 680 488 3993
F: ++ 680 488 3990

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