The Catholic Agency for Justice, Peace and Development

Farming for sustainability in Fiji

In the third post of the Caritas blog series for Laudato Si' Week 2020, Martin de Jong, coordinator for the State of the Environment for Oceania report series, shares on the work of Tutu Rural Training Centre in Fiji.

Caritas' work with the State of the Environment for Oceania report series has taken us to many places. In 2016, I journeyed with our Programmes staffer Murray Shearer to the Marist-run Tutu Rural Training Centre (RTC) in Fiji, just weeks after Cyclone Winston devastated the country. The Marist-run Centre trains young men, women and married couples to become self-employed farmers in their home villages. It provides practical, sustainable farming skills and business skills, as well as relationship skills in an integral human development approach.

This week, I caught up with the Tutu Director Fr Petero Matairatu. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, its trainee farmers had to be sent back home early from their courses, but were applying their skills at home. He said long-term changes in climate were causing dieback problems with many kava crops, but Tutu's techniques to regenerate the soil was helping its farmers to obtain good produce.

You can hear more about the Tutu Centre and other case studies from Oceania through a Caritas Internationalis webinar this week on Social Action: Integral Ecology and Community Building. Find out more here.



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Tutu ana te puehu - Stirring up the dust