The Pacific Calling Partnership (PCP) supports the efforts of Pacific Island communities to make their voices heard and educates the Australian community about the impacts of climate change on the Pacific. The PCP supports the efforts of Pacific Island communities to make their voices heard through training programs for young activists from Kiribati, Tuvalu and elsewhere in the Pacific, such as the annual Kiribati-Tuvalu-Australia Exchange Program (KATEP). The PCP also supports Pacific Island communities' participation in international conferences such as the 2015 Paris conference (COP21). To educate Australians about the impacts of climate change in the Pacific, the PCP runs workshops and presents talks for schools and community organisations.
The PCP often collaborates with people, governments and organisations who work on raising awareness of the impacts of climate change, both in the Pacific and more broadly. The PCP is open to forming new relationships.
Find out more about:
PCP at COP21 – the 2015 Paris Climate Change Conference
A delegation from the Pacific Calling Partnership (PCP) attended the international climate conference in Paris (COP21) in December 2015.
The delegation consisted of Maina Talia (a former KATEP participant) and Pulafagu Toafa from Tuvalu, Tinaai Teaua and Rae Bainteiti from Kiribati, Maria Tiimon Chi-Fang formerly from Kiribati – now from Australia, and Phil Glendenning and Jill Finnane from Australia.
The delegation participated in a number of Side Events organised by non-government organisations and by the UNHCR – the UN Refugee Agency. Delegates also spoke to journalists from many international media organisations including FranceTV, the South China Morning Post and the ABC.
The delegation also cooperated with Kiribati and Tuvalu government delegations to help raise the profile of the Coalition of Atoll Nations (CANCC).
Although the agreement reached in Paris will not be enough to stop significant climate change from occurring, it was significant in that it is the first time that such a large number of countries have agreed to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius. The efforts of the PCP delegation and global civil society more generally were vital in placing significant pressure on countries to come to an agreement.
Read PCP's Paris Conference report here.
Watch Phil Glendenning's reflections on the Paris Summit
Pacific Calling Partnership Workshops and Talks
Since 2006, the Pacific Calling Partnership has been taking steps to ensure that the voice of Pacific Islands on climate change is heard loud and clear in the Australian and global community. In our workshops we aim to share the experience of the impacts of climate change on our Pacific neighbours.
The Pacific Calling Partnership team deliver workshops and talks on a number of topics, including:
- Impacts of climate change on Pacific Islands
- Climate Justice in the Pacific: climate change as a human rights issue
- Cross cultural awareness: differences between Pacific and Australian cultures
PCP workshops and talks are suitable for parish groups, community groups and schools.
Click here to contact us about booking a workshop or talk.
The PCP has a number of experienced team members who facilitate workshops and deliver talks.
Maria Tiimon Chi-fang
Maria Tiimon Chi-fang works as Pacific Outreach Project Officer for the Pacific Calling Partnership and comes from the island nation of Kiribati right on the equator in the Pacific and one of the places in our region most at risk from the effects of climate change.
Maria presents the face of climate affected communities that have few resources to adapt. Maria is working to build links between Pacific Island Migrant Communities and the PCP, and to increase their awareness of how climate change is affecting islands in the Pacific.
In the time that she has been with the PCP Maria has made a huge impact on all who have met her. She combines a care for the future of her own people with a generous and graceful concern to bring people gradually and positively to an understanding of the kinds of decisions industrialised societies need to make if we are to extend the amount of time her people can continue to live on their islands.
Jill coordinates the Edmund Rice Centre’s Eco Justice campaign and the Pacific Calling Partnership. Jill helped establish the PCP in 2006 and has a background in fair trade and sustainable development.
Jill has helped the PCP develop a vibrant team of people dedicated to ensuring that the voices of the Pacific are heard more clearly both within the global community and the Australian community. Jill has been part of many delegations to Kiribati and Tuvalu, as well as many international conferences on climate change and small island developing states. Jill is a trained facilitator.
Previously, Jill worked with Action for World Development as a community educator on sustainable development. She is a permaculture practitioner and teacher of permaculture which she has taught in Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Australia. She has written two books:'When You Grow Up' which she co-authored with an Australian Indigenous woman, Constance Nungala McDonald and 'Lawns in to Lunch' which is about ordinary people growing food in the city and she has contributed a chapter to ‘Permaculture Pioneers’ and ‘City Permaculture1’ and ‘City Permaculture2’ . Jill is a strong believer in the importance of creating space for Pacific Island voices to be heard, and the value of working in partnership with Pacific communities.
Vincent Sicari works as Project Officer for the Pacific Calling Partnership and has a background as a Conservation Architect with the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage and the NSW Government Architect’s Office.
Through the PCP, Vincent has worked with Pacific Island communities that have few resources to adapt to climate change. Together with Maria Tiimon Chi-Fang, Vincent is working to build links between Pacific Island Migrant Communities with the Partnership, and to increase awareness in the Australian community of how Climate Change is affecting islands in the Pacific.
Vincent participates in a number of environmental and heritage organisations such as the Climate Council and the Global Catholic Climate Movement and is a member of the International Council of Monuments and Sites. He is committed to the promotion of a sustainable world and action on climate change that respects the distinct contributions that different cultures make to the world community. He has developed expertise relating to the challenges confronting the vulnerable people of the global south and especially the Pacific Islands.
Click here to contact us about booking a workshop or talk.
July/August 2017 Delegation from Australia to Kiribati
The PCP is delighted to inform our stakeholders of our latest delegation to Kiribati. The delegation was led by Phil Glendenning, the Director of the Edmund Rice Centre, who was accompanied by:
Dr Simon Bradshaw (Climate Change Advocacy Coordinator Oxfam)
Mrs Ula Majewksi (GROW Campaign Lead at Oxfam Australia)
Mike Bowers (senior Australian Photographer and Journalist)
Dr Usha Harris from Macquarie University; and
Aso Ioapo, Program Officer for Peace and Justice with the Congregational Church of Tuvalu
Kiribati-Tuvalu-Australia Exchange Program (KATEP)
The Pacific Calling Partnership (PCP), together with the Kiribati Climate Action Network KiriCAN) and Tuvalu Climate Action Network (TuCAN) launched the Kiribati-Australia-Tuvalu Exchange Program (KATEP) in 2014. In 2016, Uniting World became a program partner in time for the third KATEP program in order to expand the program to include participants from the Pacific Island community in Australia.
KATEP is a training program which develops the climate change advocacy skills of emerging young leaders from Kiribati and Tuvalu. Each year, participants come to Australia from Kiribati and Tuvalu to take part in the program.
On arrival in Australia, KATEP participants first take part in workshops that build their advocacy skills, and then they have the opportunity to put their skills into practice. In 2016, participants lobbied candidates for election in the Federal seats of Reid and Kingsford-Smith.
2016 participants Bailey Koulapi and Kuata Taumaheke (from Tuvalu), Kotei Temakei and Maningare Bwamatang (from Kiribati) and Adi Mariana Waqa and Melaia Turagaiviu (who were both born in Fiji and now live in Sydney). Pictured together with Matt Thistlethwaite, the federal member for Kingsford-Smith and James Macdonald the Greens candidate for the seat of Kingsford-Smith at the 2016 election.
In 2016, for the first time, a delegation from the PCP went to Kiribati to run a training program for a larger audience. The training program went for 3 days, and 26 young people attended.
The program in Australia commenced on 4 June 2016 and concluded on 18 June 2016.
KATEP participants have gone on to play an important role at international conferences including the 2015 Paris climate change conference and the 2014 Small Island Developing States Conference in Samoa.
Maina Talia came from Tuvalu to participate in KATEP in 2014, and in 2015 he went on to attend the Paris conference on climate change (COP21). While at the conference, Maina organised a side event called ‘It’s about our very survival’ as well as taking part in many other side events. Maina was also interviewed by many international media organisations.
KATEP participant, Maina Talia, with Tinaii Teaua, KiriCAN delegate to the Paris Conference.
After coming from Kiribati to participate in KATEP in 2014, Apisaloma Tawati went on to attend the Small Island Developing States Conference in Samoa later that year. While at the conference, Apisaloma called on world leaders to defend atoll nations and did a number of interviews. He also wrote an article for Outreach: a multi stakeholder magazine on climate change and sustainable development.
KATEP participant, Apisaloma Tawati, with Maria Tiimon Chi-fang, Pacific Outreach Officer for the Pacific Calling Partnership
After attending the 2016 KATEP, Maningare Bwamatang represented Kiribati at the Asia Pacific Youth Dialogue in Chengdu, China in from September 20th-23rd 2016. The purpose of her trip was to promote mutual understanding between Asian and Pacific cultures, as well as to identify methods to improve youth engagement in sustainable development.
KATEP participant, Maningare Bwamatang, at the 2016 Break Free from Fossil Fuels event in Newcastle, NSW.
What is the Earth Charter?
The Earth Charter is a declaration of fundamental principles for building a JUST, PEACEFUL and SUSTAINABLE global society in the 21st century. It seeks to inspire in all peoples a new sense of global interdependence and shared responsibility for the well being of the human family and the larger living world. It is an expression of hope and a call to help create a global partnership at a critical juncture in history.
The document’s inclusive ethical vision recognises that environmental protection, human rights, equitable human development, and peace are interdependent and indivisible. It provides a new framework for thinking about and addressing these issues. The result is also a very broad conception of what constitutes sustainable development.
The Earth Charter is the product of a decade long, worldwide, cross-cultural conversation about common goals and shared values.
The Earth Charter is underpinned by four overarching principles:
- Respect and Care for the Community of Life
- Ecological Integrity
- Social and Economic Justice
- Democracy, Non-violence and Peace
The Charter enables people to broaden their perspectives on local and global problems, develop new visions of what is possible and then devise integrated, long term solutions for the future.
Why do we need an Earth Charter?
The opening words say it all
“We stand at a critical moment in Earth’s history, a time when humanity must choose its future. As the world becomes increasingly interdependent and fragile, the future at once holds great promise and great peril. With the dangers of war, social and economic injustice and threats to the environment emerging, the human family must determine how to secure a sustainable future.”
The Earth Charter can be downloaded in 31 languages at the following website: http://www.earthcharter.org
If you would like to endorse the Earth Charter:
A wonderful initiative is the Little Earth Charter:
Edmund Rice Centre and the Earth Charter
Since becoming an affiliate of Earth Charter International in 2008, the Edmund Rice Centre has joined a diverse global network of people, organizations and institutions that participate in promoting and implementing the values and principles of the Earth Charter.
The Edmund Rice Centre’s approach to fulfilling these obligations is two-pronged: firstly continue to develop and find ways to integrate environmental considerations into the workplace and staff activities; and secondly, to continually explore and expand the way it integrates the Earth Charter principles into its existing social justice education, research and advocacy programs aimed at promoting human rights. We are happy to assist.
Education and the Earth Charter
Education is fundamental to the mission of Earth Charter Initiative. Earth Charter International has therefore created the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development at the University for Peace in Costa Rica. The Center’s mission is to promote the use of the Earth Charter in schools, colleges, universities, and non-formal education programmes throughout the world and contribute to education for a sustainable way of life.
The Earth Charter Initiative seeks to collaborate with the efforts of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. In October 2003, UNESCO adopted a resolution "recognising the Earth Charter as an important ethical framework for sustainable development." The resolution affirms member states' intention to "utilise the Earth Charter as an educational instrument, particularly in the framework of the United Nations Decade for Education for Sustainable Development" (Resolution Reference 32C/ Resolution 17).
Australian Schools and the Earth Charter
Is your school keen to improve its role as a place that respects and cares for the earth and for one another? Do you want to become a no-waste school? Do you want to see some practical changes in your school such as composting, less water and energy use? Do you want to promote an understanding of how our every day actions affect poorer countries? Do you want to strengthen links with your local community? Do you want your school to more consciously link ethics with actions?
Whether you want it to be an integrated ‘whole of school’ approach, that is expressed in all parts of the curriculum and life of the school, or whether you want to begin very slowly, the Edmund Rice Centre can be booked to provide support.
The Charter has many educational uses in schools for developing an understanding of the critical choices facing humanity and the urgent need for commitment to a sustainable way of life. It can be used to advance many fundamental educational objectives: consciousness raising, application of values, critical thinking and planning for action.
A School Earth Charter Program could be adopted via a number of learning approaches:
i. Cross-curricular program – Earth Charter principles could be integrated into existing subjects or delivered as an independent unit of study where the core curriculum allows such flexibility. For example, science classes could conduct energy audits in the school and develop an understanding of greenhouse science and the impacts of global warming; Maths classes calculate total costs of waste in economic and environmental terms; English classes could write letters to political figures on the need to support renewable energy and deforestation concerns; Religious Education classes could consider the social justice implications of the environmental threats to people living in developing countries in the Asia-Pacific such as declining water quality and global warming.
ii. Extra-curricular activities – Teachers and students could consider setting up Earth Charter Youth Groups and develop ways of putting into action the mission and aims of the Charter. Furthermore, schools could consider strengthening linkages with community and environmental groups active in their local area (e.g. Landcare or neighbourhood centres) or investigate what their local council is doing to implement Agenda 21 in their community.
iii. Social Justice Coordinators Network – social justice coordinators or interested teachers could encourage students to form a social justice group, school council or eco-committee to design and plan initiatives for implementing Earth Charter principles in the school.
iv. Religious Education and spirituality – as we get in touch with the earth and God’s creativity, it inspires a sense of awe and wonder. Young people and adults are searching for meaningful spirituality and an understanding of the Earth Charter invites us to a renewed sense of God’s presence in all creation that promotes an inclusive society living in communion with, rather than exploiting the earth.
Learning Resources and Useful Links
Many resources are available from this site: http://www.earthcharterinaction.org/content/categories/Education/
An updated version of the Earth Charter Initiative Handbook 2010 still under revision is available at: http://www.earthcharterinaction.org/invent/images/uploads/EC%20INITIATIVE%20HANDBOOK%202010%20Eng.pdf
A useful website with much information is Catholic Earthcare: http://www.catholicearthcare.org.au/
Climate Change and the Earth Charter
Climate change -- caused by humanity's emission of greenhouse gases -- has emerged as a global issue of the highest urgency. On this page, you will find some articles addressing climate change from an integrated ethical perspective, as framed by the Earth Charter. This page was initially developed in 2007 to stimulate a dialogue on these issues, making the linkages with the Earth Charter.
To initiate this dialogue, two members of Earth Charter International Council -- Australian scientist Brendan Mackey of Australian National University, and Chinese lawyer Song Li of the World Bank wrote a report in 2007, to the ECI Council titled Winning the Struggle Against Global Warming. We invite you to read this paper and others that are related to this theme.
The Pacific Calling Partnership was formed in 2006 and is an initiative of the Edmund Rice Centre’s Eco Justice Section, which works in partnership with low-lying Pacific Islands that are being adversely affected by climate change. More information can be found at: www.org.au/pcp
Afternoon Tea for the Future is another sub-group of the Eco Justice section at the Edmund Rice Centre. A small group of community members meet at the Centre at 15 Henley Rd Homebush West and engage in an informal, but interesting talk and discussion on set topics associated with ecological justice. Sessions are held on a Tuesday afternoon in the centre library around six times a year. Link: http://www.erc.org.au/index.php?module=pagemaster&PAGE_user_op=view_page&PAGE_id=18&MMN_position=65:13
The Pacific Calling Partnership (PCP) began in recognition of the negative impact climate change was having on the peoples of Kiribati, Tuvalu and islands of the Torres Strait.
We are committed to listening to what Pacific leaders are saying about imminent threats to their way of life and collaborating with them in passing this important message on.
PCP strives to facilitate links between concerned people in Australia and Pacific Islands that are the most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.
Read our latest Media Releases
Read our 2015 Annual Report.
About Pacific Calling Partnership
The Pacific Calling Partnership began in May 2006 in response to a series of calls that had come from the peoples in low-lying Pacific Islands. Read more here. The PCP brings together a number of significant Non Government Organisations (NGOs), school groups, community organisations, and individuals who all recognise Australia’s ecological debt to Kiribati, Tuvalu, parts of the Torres Strait and other low-lying Pacific Island neighbours. These are joined in partnership with individuals and organisations living in the Pacific and migrant groups in Australia. New members are always welcome.
Together we strive, in all our endeavours, to listen to and be accountable to voices from the Pacific and Torres Strait and to raise awareness about the impacts on them of high greenhouse gas emissions from industrialised countries. The PCP meets regularly in order to co-ordinate, energise, and review the progress that the campaign is making. Several partners are members of the Climate Action Network of Australia (CANA) and are active participants in CANA processes.
The PCP aims to build a consensus that drives support for Australia, in partnership with our neighbours, to undertake an audit of the civil, cultural, economic and environmental resilience of all countries within the Pacific region. In this way we can work towards building a positive, communitarian and sustainable response based on Human Rights to the increased water, food, fuel and land stresses that are predicted under present circumstances and future climate change scenarios.