Charlene Freeman, Head of the Department of Natural Resource Management at Cuttington University led a team of 12 Liberians (5 females and 7 males) selected from government and academic institutions to participate in a two-week intensive training at the Galilee International Management Institute, Centre for Agriculture, Environment and Water in Israel.
The 12 Liberians were selected from the Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Mines & Energy, Center for Agriculture Research Institute (CARI), University of Liberia, Cuttington University, Forestry Development Authority and Environmental Protection Agency to pursue short term courses in climate resilient agriculture, climate change adaptation, coastal and flood engineering among others.
“We’ve acquired knowledge and we are not just going to sit on it but rather, we are going to organize teaching sessions for our colleagues at our different institutions to spread the knowledge to the others who didn’t go with us. We are also expected to conduct different hands-on and other trainings that will help practicalize our experiences and knowledge acquired. As it’s often said, to whom much is given, much is expected…” said Charlene Freeman, Team Leader of the trainees.
She spoke during the Back to Office presentation by trainees. The training was related to the advancement of the National Adaptation Plans (NAPs) Project with funding from the Green Climate Fund (GCF) through UNDP Environment Programme in collaboration with the Environment protection Agency (EPA).
Freeman said they have gained skills and experiences that are relevant to support climate change adaptation planning, reduce vulnerability to climate change and facilitate the integration of climate change adaptation into national development planning processes.
She thanked UNDP and the Green Climate Fund (GCF) for the opportunity afforded them to acquired knowledge to help mitigate the issue of climate change in Liberia.
Dorsla Farcathy Team Leader of UNDP Sustainable Economic Transformation (SET) Pillar told the trainees to ensure that knowledge acquired from the training impact others and benefit their respective institutions.
“I just want to say thank you for making the sacrifices to go and learn, come back to Liberia to be of assistance not only to your offices, but the country at a whole. In these times we find ourselves, we need the necessary skill sets that can roll out a lot of things; the insufficiency is well recognized in Liberia,” Mr. Farcarthy said in brief remarks.
He said the issue of environment has now become a ‘resounding song and recurrent theme’ in nearly all public statements nowadays in Liberia and elsewhere in the world and the need for collective efforts cannot be overlooked.
The SET Pillar Team Leader said UNDP is more concern with the impact that will be created by the trainees at their various institutions by transferring the knowledge acquired to others who were not part of the team to Israel, to assist the Government of Liberia achieve its development agenda.
Also speaking, Dr. Nathaniel Blama, EPA Executive Director said the training adds more burden and responsibilities to the trainees at their respective institutions to act and think differently about how to address the issue of climate change in Liberia.
“There’s always a pressure on you when you acquire new knowledge, and that pressure is to deliver what you’ve learned…. What this shows is that, to whom much is given, much is expected/required. So, much is going to be required of you at your respective institutions to promote the work to which you have been assigned,” Dr. Blama said.
He thanked UNDP and the Green Climate Fund (GCF) for the support.