Fiji Time: 1:14 PM on Saturday 22 November

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Need for experts

Sherita Sharma
Wednesday, November 14, 2012

THE region needs Pacific experts to identify and maintain heritage sites, says Pacific Heritage Hub (PHH) manager Adi Meretui Ratunabuabua.

The University of the South Pacific (USP), which is hosting the hub, is working with the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme (SPREP) and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) to set up the PHH programme.

"Instead of getting consultants from overseas, we should have our own consultants from the Pacific and that is one of the things the hub is about to do," Ms Ratunabuabua said.

"So some of the sites that have been listed have been done but it's been done with outside experts. We need to have Pacific experts," she said.

"We are looking at introducing Pacific heritage conservation course 101 so that we can get out to the communities," she added.

The PHH is looking to engage different schools at USP in the course such as the history, anthropology, archaeology and environment departments.

"The first thing to do would be to get the different departments to talk to each other, like what are you doing in terms of community, workshops, that maybe related to heritage," she said.

Ms Ratunabuabua said a basic heritage management course would not only help those on the field but also government officials who were in the policy making sector.

"This tailor-made course is to try and get them trained in this, and also the community as well," said Ms Ratunabuabua.

She said they were using the example of a course in Japan and a World Heritage Centre in China.

"We are looking at those courses too but we are striving for a tailor-made to the Pacific, because some issues maybe different from that of those countries."

She said the project also intended to get youths involved.

"We have youth ambassadors who are the youth volunteers who want to come into the sector and learn about it."





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