Australian High Commission office in Honiara approves funding for North Malaita solar project under TARD
The beneficiary community health clinics include Bita’ama in the North Malaita Constituency and Sulagwalu in the Lau/Baelelea Constituency. Total cost of the solar electrification project for Bita’ama and Sulagwalu community clinics, which will be sponsored by the Australian High Commission is around SBD$25,965.
The need for solar electrification of the two beneficiary health centres was discovered during a recent visit by TARD members to rural communities in North Malaita late last year while implementing certain community projects.
This initiative is a classic example of the bottom-up approach as the rural communities were given the opportunity to identify their specific needs. The need for solar electrification at the Bita’ama and Sulagwalu clinics is a collective request from the clinic committees and staff, which was forwarded to be pursued by TARD with potential donors.
The proposal was drafted and submitted to the third Secretary of the Australian High Commission office in Honiara, Ms Gabrielle Stewart in February for consideration. As a result, the High Commission has agreed to sponsor the solar materials.
TARD is adamant that this solar electrification project will enable Sulagwalu and Bita’ama clinics to have electrical lighting, refrigeration of medicines, and if possible analysis of blood samples, which is very important in such a region where malaria is quite common.
Last year the Australian High Commission office has also supported TARD with a sponsorship of SBD$3,680 to successfully coordinate the first ever free North Malaita Christmas Games at Malu’u attracting a total of 59 soccer and 18 netball teams from both the To’abaita and Baelelea regions.
Therefore TARD is very thankful to the Australian High Commission office in Solomon Islands, on behalf of the North Malaita people, for the continuous support to youths especially towards a good cause which will benefit rural communities.