Opening Remarks by the Deputy Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum, Dr Filimon Manoni
Delivered at the Capacity Building Workshop on Video and Poetry – Award to the PIF Climate Change and Resilience Youth Competition top 10 video and poem entrants
13 October 2021
His Excellency, George Edgar, the High Commissioner for the United Kingdom to Fiji
Our youth participants
Ladies and gentlemen
Yadra vinaka from Suva.
I am very pleased to offer a few remarks at the opening of this virtual Capacity Building Workshop on Video and Poetry for young emerging artists and leaders. It follows a series of activities that have shown the light on our youth, and rightly so since this is about their resilience and their future.
This workshop which was part of the recent Pacific Resilience Partnership youth competition under the theme “Our Actions Now – Our Future, Our Resilience” resonates the urgency with which we need to treat resilience and climate action now. Before I proceed, allow me to acknowledge the support from the United Kingdom and 350 Pacific for making this workshop possible.
Indeed, for our Blue Pacific region climate change is no longer an issue of debate. It is a matter of survival and we need to Act now for our children, for our grandchildren, for all of humanity and for our one and only Planet.
With at least half of our region’s population under the age of 25, the voice of our youth is one that is so crucial, and youth play a critical role as equal partners in advocating and finding solutions for climate change and disasters. With such capacity building opportunities, we hope our young people’s skills will be enhanced to support our collective climate advocacy and action in securing a resilient future.
Let me be clear, climate advocacy is not the responsibility of our political leadership only. Each of us has a moral duty and it’s our shared responsibility as citizens of this Blue Pacific – and through engaging in this very activity, you are contributing to strengthening our regional advocacy as a whole.
As we approach COP26, I want to encourage you all to continue sharing your knowledge, talents and voice in our call for urgent climate actions and the shared interest in building the resilience of our region.
With these few remarks, I wish you well in this training, and hope this can lead to more opportunities for our young people in elevating their voices. I look forward to continuing to partner with you as we progress our Blue Pacific priorities.
I thank you.
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