Twenty-one villages have benefitted from grants of $50,000 under the Adaptation Funds Project through the Civil Society Support Programme (C.S.S.P.).
The C.S.S.P. has been in operation in Samoa since December 2010 and implemented through the Samoan Government’s Ministry of Finance, with funding from the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) and the European Union (E.U.).
A total of 41 applications from pre-selected villages were received but only 21 were awarded, having satisfied the requirements.
One of the villages is Lotofaga.
Va’atausili Toleafoa told Samoa Observer that ‘we are very grateful for the funding support from the AusAID and E.U’.
“On behalf of all the villages, I must say thank you very much for the kind assistance and for all you have contributed not only for us at Lotofaga, but for the whole of Samoa,” Va’atausili said.
“These funds will be a big, big help in maintaining our seawall and drainages and other developments in villages and we promise to put them into good use for our people.”
Si’ufaga Falelatai was another village. Village mayor, Misa Mealamu Misa, said water is always a challenge for them but the money will go a long way to change that.
“It’s such a blessing for other villages to have water tanks for good and clean water,” Misa said.
“Back in the days, our village has always been living and surviving on the village’s own water but as life goes on; we see that the number of people in our village keeps on increasing every year.”
“That is why we have asked C.S.S.P. for help in terms of water tanks and I am thankful that some of the families in our sub-village have now received water tanks through funds from C.S.S.P. but we still need more help because as you can see; we have so many villagers now.”
The C.S.S.P’s overall objective is “improving the social and economic well-being of the people of Samoa.”
The programme’s purpose is to empower civil society organisations in ways that contribute to inclusive socio-economic development.
The programme rests on the twin premise that while civil society’s critical role in social-economic development has expanded, civil society organisations are often limited by a lack of skilled personnel, resources and the capacity to respond to this challenge.
The initial design identifies three sub-objectives; sustainable social and economic benefits which meet the needs of vulnerable groups in Samoa, well governed civil society organisations with strengthened capacity to manage developmental programs on a sustainable basis and strengthened voice of civil society organizations to effectively influence national policy.