FRIEND Fiji opened its new production facility funded by the European Union during the organisation's 11th anniversary celebrations last week.
FRIEND director Sashi Kiran said work on the production facility was initiated following severe damage to their headquarters in Tuvu in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Evan last year.
"The main administrative office building that also housed the production space for food products supporting poverty alleviation initiatives of communities sustained severe damage while two newly built supporting structures on site, a 200 seating capacity training facility, Natatadra Bure and a card/craft workshop, Deacon House were destroyed," she said.
"Despite the damage and challenges faced by the organisation in picking up the pieces FRIEND has been working hard to ensure the communities continue to be served from the donor funds as per contracts.
"The European Union is an existing donor partner of FRIEND and funded GROW program for around 700 beneficiaries through a social mitigation program aimed at improving livelihoods of sugarcane farmers and their dependents over three years."
EU deputy head of delegation Johnny Engell-Hansen said the assistance was part of the EU's support program.
"We are here today to celebrate the opening of the processing facilities built by FRIEND and to see another concrete and visible output of the EU support program to Fiji," he said.
"Despite very adverse weather conditions, with two successive floods and Cyclone Evan in 2012, and severe damage caused to its buildings, FRIEND has managed to keep on track with the targets and timelines of the EU program."