Story | 22 Feb, 2024

Community empowerment and biodiversity protection mark Samoa Conservation Society's anniversary and forest restoration efforts

Embarking on a mission to adapt to climate change, the Samoa Conservation Society (SCS) unveiled its planned activities for the Nature-based financing for protected areas in Samoa – O Le Pupu Pu'e National Park Kiwa Initiative project.

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 Participants in Samoa's Forest Restoration Awareness Day take part in tree planting activity at the O Le Pupu Pue National Park.

Photo: Eugene Meleisea

The project aims to restore and conserve the park's ecosystems, fostering a harmonious relationship between the community and the environment.

The project also aims to utilise creative ways to sustainably fund protected area management in Samoa, as well as to qualify its standard to meet international requirements for carbon offsetting.  

Between March to June of 2023, SCS continuously checked the forestry plots to monitor the ongoing restoration efforts. 13,000 native seeds were planted to fix 4 hectares of land, adding to the 7,700 seeds planted earlier since inception. Also, they collected and prepared 11,500 native seeds for planting to keep the park nice and clean.

Amidst the replanting, the society also celebrated its tenth anniversary and organised a Forest Restoration Awareness Day, demonstrating its continued commitment to the value of community involvement.

This occasion coincided with first aid and species identification training for 30 community field assistants, arming them with essential skills to monitor and maintain the park's health.

The project implemented by Samoa Conservation Society titled “Improving the management and restoration of O Le Pupu Pu’e National Park in Samoa” is part of the Kiwa Initiative, financed by the European Union, Agence Française de Développement, Global Affairs Canada (GAC), Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and (DFAT) and New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT). Their combined goal is protecting resources, reinforcing coastal defences, and strengthening resilience of communities in the Oceania region. The Kiwa Initiative has established partnerships with the Pacific Community (SPC), the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the Oceania Regional Office of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Kiwa Initiative logo and donors and partners