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PIA Press Release

Australia community assistance continues in Caraga region

Butuan City (March 24) -- The Australian government pledged to continue its various development programs in the Philippines, particularly in the Caraga region.

Top representatives of the Australian government aid program will conduct a series of forums across the country next month about their intention to continue their assistance to the Philippine government.

This year's program is dubbed “Philippines Australia Community Assistance Program (PACAP): Building Community Resilience, Sustaining Development” and forum on the environment, development and climate change.

According to PACAP program director Lourdes M. Padilla and communication officer Ninosa Alipon, the forum will provide the avenue for PACAP partners to share lessons from their projects on environment and how these are contributing to the global effort in environment protection, governance, sustainable development and climate change adaptation.

Padilla also said the forum hopes to strengthen partnership among civil society organization (CSOs), government, donors and other national environment networks and groups.

The PACAP will conduct a two-day forum on April 15-16 at the downtown hotel and convention center here where stakeholders from the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), PACAP partner NGOs, POs and CSOs are participating.

The forum aims to identify lessons and best practices and share these among partners, to facilitate networking and partnership among CSOs, government, donors and other national environment networks and groups, and future grant financial assistance in the region.

Currently, Surigao del Norte is the recipient of the Australian grant amounting to Php 77.129 million with 39 projects while Agusan del Sur has Php 75, 646, 344 with 34 projects.

Projects focus on the protection and governance of coastal marine ecosystems, watersheds, wetlands and ancestral domains, basic services and livelihood projects like potable water, watershed management, solid waste management, ecotourism, organic farming, sloping agriculture and contour farming.

Projects under climate change involve clean energy (ram pump), adaptation and disaster risk management.

PACAP strategically implements its projects in the Caraga region and other parts in the country through the Focal Community Assistance Scheme (FOCAS) engagement and nationally through Responsive Assistance Scheme (RAS) characterized by projects separate from each other but spread all over the country.

The PACAP is a 23-year-old grant facility of the AusAID in the Philippines. It has financially supported more than 1,200 projects benefiting at least 2 million poor people through partnerships with more than 500 CSOs, primarily NGOs and people's organizations. (muc/PIA-Caraga) [top]

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