The new Program Manager for Te Ipukarea Society Inc. (TIS), Jacqui Evans, begins work this week at their Maraerenga Office.
“I’m really excited to start this job. It’s the kind of work I love to do,” says Evans.
“I’ll be coordinating a project aimed at protecting our native and endemic birds and other important species.”
Endemic birds are bird species only found in a particular place and nowhere else in the world.
Examples are the Rarotonga Flycatcher (Kakerori), Rarotonga Starling (I’oi), Atiu Swiftlet (Kopeka) and Mangaian Kingfisher (Tanga’eo).
Evans says she will also be working on waste management, youth environment awareness and strengthening of the marine raui.
“TIS promoted recycling back in 1996 during the first Clean Up the World campaign held in the Cook Islands. Back then we worked with the late Father Kevin Glover who was instrumental in setting up the first recycling programme in the country.”
“In those days we met with the importers about plastic bags and other undesirables and the main people interested were Foodland but awareness has increased so much since then. We are pleased to see CITC doing some more for the environment,” she says.
“There is still a long way to go and we’re making a submission to the Ministry of Infrastructure and Planning,” she says.
“It is great to see that MOIP is open to advice from NGO’s. We specialise in this area and do so much work on it - and at no cost to Government! So it pays for them to ask our advice – even for the smallest things, ” she adds.
Evans says her position was made possible with the help of Birdlife International and the Critical Ecosystems Partnership Fund.