Tarawa, Kiribati – 14th February 2023 – The Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) in partnership with the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agriculture (MELAD) today organized a graduation ceremony for i-Kiribati participants of climate smart agriculture and green entrepreneurship training programs. GGGI’s Pacific Green Entrepreneur Network (PGEN) program and Climate Smart Agriculture projects commenced in 2021 and are funded by Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD).
The event was attended by Honorable Minister for Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agriculture, New Zealand’s High Commissioner HE Andre Van Der Wait, Qatar Delegations, Secretary from Ministry of Education and MELAD, TUC Mayor, representative from the Embassy for the People’s Republic of China (EPRC), General Manager ANZ, officials from Government Ministries, GGGI staff, PGEN alumni and the graduates.
HM Mr. Ruateki Tekaira stated, “these training and capacity building of the communities is the heart of his ministry long term vision which contribute to Kiribati’s economy and become self-sufficient”. He further added, this is not the end of the journey but the beginning of a great adventure to become self-sufficient with healthy and nutritious food and green growth business. Moreover, he acknowledged and appreciated the support of Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD). He thanked QFFD for their generosity and look forward to further strengthening their partnership with the Qatari government.
The 2022 Pacific Greenpreneurs Incubator is a part of the PGEN program and ran from September 2022 to December 2022, with six early-stage green enterprises from Kiribati participating in local workshops, regional training, mentoring, coaching, and networking to build their sustainable business ideas.
The Incubator program culminated in a Business Plan Competition, with two winners announced at the event. Ms Uritina Etera, Founder of Etronia’s Farm and Mr Maatai Tamaiti founder of Matai Trading (solar equipment) are being awarded USD5,000 in seed grant funding each to invest in their business growth.
The Climate Smart Agriculture project conducted a Home Gardening training program and Agribusiness training program in partnership with the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Agriculture (MELAD) through the Agriculture & Livestock Division. The home garden training program was conducted between 16th November to 22nd December. Forty participants successfully completed the program and were awarded a certificate of participation along with a set of tools to support in their backyard garden. The participants developed basic skills on sowing seeds, raising seedlings, crop management practices, harvesting techniques and utilizing locally grown vegetables into a menu along with general green practices to improve the income and nutrition security of their household.
The Agribusiness training program was conducted between 16th September to 2nd December 2022. A total of 13 agribusiness participants successfully completed the program and were awarded with certificate of participation. Out of 13 agribusinesses, there were 11 enterprises who were the winners of the three categories i) 6 x USD2,500, ii) 3 x USD5,000 x3 and iii) 2 x USD7,500 x 2. The seed grant funding will be invested in their green business.
The i-Kiribati Greenpreneurs graduates are part of the regional Pacific Greenpreneurs alumni, comprised of 56 early-stage green enterprises who have completed the program in Fiji, Tonga, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Vanuatu.