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Japan provides over $313k grant

Tuesday 14 March 2023 | Written by Supplied | Published in Local, National

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Japan provides over $313k grant
Deputy Head of Mission, Tatsushi Nishioka of the Embassy of Japan and Linda Ruamoana, the chairperson of the Apii Vaitau Committee. SUPPLIED/23031316

A school and a volunteer fire service have received Japan’s Grant Assistance for Grass-Roots Human Security Projects.

Aitutaki’s Vaitau School received NZ$90,570 for development of safe outdoor area for early childhood education from the Japanese government earlier this month.

The school received the support under Japan’s Grant Assistance for Grass-Roots Human Security Project (GGP). The grant was signed by deputy Head of Mission, Tatsushi Nishioka of the Embassy of Japan and Linda Ruamoana, the chairperson of the Apii Vaitau Committee.

Under this scheme, Japan will provide NZ$90,570 to the Apii Vaitau Committee to create a dedicated outdoor space in front of the early childhood education classroom at Vaitau Primary School in Vaipae/Tautu Village.

The outdoor space will have a fence to prevent children from walking out of the school and an extended roof to block direct sunlight, helping to improve the safe environment for early childhood students and teachers.

In a statement, Nishioka said: “The Cook Islands and Japan has a history of 12 years of diplomatic relations and I am proud of the history of our relations. We are very far away to each other, as we are here at the South Pacific, and Japan is at the North Pacific. However, we are living together in the same Pacific Ocean. Visit of the people between two countries has been suspended for a while because of Covid-19, but the cooperation between our two countries has never suspended so far.”

Japan also provided NZ$222,830 to the Puaikura Volunteer Fire Brigade Association Incorporated for the extension of the fire station, and the provision of rescue and training equipment, and an emergency vehicle.

The grant was signed by Nishioka and Jason Moorfield, chief fire officer of Puaikura Volunteer Fire Brigade Association Incorporated at the Puaikura Fire Station in Arorangi.

The extension of the fire station will provide indoor parking space for fire engines, which are currently parked in a remote semi-outdoor area, enabling a quicker response to emergencies.

In addition, the provision of an emergency vehicle, and rescue and training equipment will improve response capabilities in the event of disasters and contribute to the early safety of Rarotonga's 13,007 residents and visitors.