Water, Gender and Climate Change – addressing gender gaps in the Pacific

Participants were taught the basic skills and knowledge to use the internationally recognised Toolkit on Sex-disaggregated Water Data Collection.

The NES recently attended the capacity development programme “Water and Climate Change: Women’s coping strategies in Pacific Small Island States” held in Nadi, Fiji from 6 – 10 February 2023.

The CDP, delivered under the umbrella of UNESCO’s World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP), and funded by the ADB, focused on addressing the interlinkages between water and gender in the context of Climate Change, and their overall links back to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Participants learned from experts on a range of concepts around gender equality and the empowerment of women from the view of water resources management and relating these back to Climate Change and Disaster-Risk reduction. Through talanoa, participants were able to share their own experiences on related issues, and were excited to understand how this training might provide viable solutions to some of the challenges they are facing.

A key outcome of this programme was that participants were taught the basic skills and knowledge to use the internationally recognised Toolkit on Sex-disaggregated Water Data Collection. This would help participants in developing group projects that will come together in a thematic publication on water and gender case studies in the Pacific.

The Nadi workshop was a follow-on to a virtual technical webinar held in October 2022. The webinar introduced Pacific SIDS to the overall objectives of the CDP and the mode of delivery. This was useful for NES to assess the value of further engaging in this programme, especially because most of the Cook Islands national gender efforts are driven out of our Ministry of Internal Affairs. In recognising the key role that women play in addressing information gaps, as well as the difficulty of implementing gender-based structures at national level, this programme was an opportunity for NES to deepen our efforts and bring better recognition to the importance of mainstreaming gender into our everyday working environment. 

This workshop was attended by 20 participants from 15 countries; Cook Islands, Nauru, Micronesia, Apia Samoa, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Kiribati, Chuuk/Micronesia, Fiji, Tuvalu,  Pohnpei/Micronesia, Port Moresby/Papa New Guinea, KWA (Kwajalein)/Marshal Islands,

NES extends our appreciation to UNESCO and ADB for their continued support and commitment towards Pacific development priorities.

For more information on this training, please contact Mr. Hugh Henry at hugh.henry@cookislands.gov.ck.

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The National Environment Service is established to protect, conserve and ensure the Cook Islands environment is managed sustainably. The agency is headed by a Director with delegated powers to carry out the functions of the Environment Act 2003.

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