Key Focus Areas

VEPA designs, co-ordinates and implements programs to ensure ownership by the communities of their environment and ecosystems. We engage all social groups within communities in Vava’u and Tonga through media and education, hands on projects, as well as collaboration with National Government programs, local and regional NGO’s, and funding partners. 

KFA 1: Biodiversity and Conservation

At the heart of all programs is the need to ensure that ecosystems, habitats and species are sustained and conserved to ensure that they provide the critical and niche links to livelihoods, resilience and productivity that humans need.

Oceans and coastal ecosystems: healthy and vibrant oceans are key to livelihoods, resilience and sustainable economic development. Programs that increase conservation and community led solutions include special management areas and marine spatial planning.

Migratory, endangered and endemic species protection: birds, turtles, whales, sharks and tuna are well known key species, however many of our endemic and endangered species are lesser known but just as important. VEPA aims to restore and protect native and migratory species.

Resilient and adaptive ecosystems: climate change, natural disasters and invasive species are increasing threats to biodiversity and reduce the benefits to people of healthy and productive ecosystems. Nature-based and community adaptive solutions increase resilience to these threats.

KFA 2: Knowledge exchange and awareness

Traditional and cultural knowledge, data systems and awareness are key components of the work that VEPA conducts including engaging with schools, communities, youth groups and broader audiences through virtual platforms and social media.

Talatalanoa: informal and open discussion platform on environmental management and traditional activities.

School programs: VEPA supports teachers and engages students on awareness topics related to their school curriculum.

Data driven: balancing cultural knowledge and data driven approaches is critical to ensure the best outcomes towards our mission

KFA 3: Resource Development

Innovation, training and institutional security are the foundational practices for VEPA to ensure that the team can provide the best support to programs and communities. As time evolves and to support the younger generations VEPA aims to engage innovative and technology driven solutions to programs.

Innovation and technology can sometimes be hard on small islands with limited access. BY utilising and balancing community and innovation VEPA hopes to ensure that programs fit to the capability of resources.

Training and development of both team, community and youth are essential and long term activities that support and engage people across a broad range of topics.

Accessible materials are created and shared across a variety of platforms and VEPA hopes to expand these materials to teachers, student groups and virtual platforms to ensure and enhance accessibility.

KFA 4: Partnerships, policies and national support

National government, international and regional organisations, philanthropies and research institutions also play key roles in the mission and goals of VEPA. Strong partnerships and program development ensure that partners are engaged in all aspects of VEPA’s programs

VEPA support and engages with the national Government on the development of policies, legislation and management plans. Sharing data, knowledge and systems are key to these ongoing partnerships

VEPA supports student programs including internships to Tongan and overseas students. These programs help to encourage and engage the team through different learning systems and programs

International partnerships are key to VEPA and programs and opportunities within Tonga are supported by a wide range of partner organizations, individuals, programs and Governments.

Thank you we aren’t VEPA without you!

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