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PCRIC interns complete disaster risk training program

Suva, Fiji

The interns of the Pacific Catastrophe Risk Insurance Company (PCRIC) were all smiles as they proudly received their certificates of completion and awards from the CEO, Mr Aholotu Palu, recently.

Attending the presentation was the University of the South Pacific Student Association Deputy Secretary General, Mr. Aneet Kumar.

“Last year, with no dedicated funding, we launched this internship program across the region with the USP, aimed at graduate and undergraduate students interested in disaster risk management and finance,” Palu says.

The PCRIC internship program in cooperation with USP, was designed to provide capacity building, training and research opportunities pertaining to disaster risk financing in order to strengthen future generations of Pacific Island countries.

“More than 20 students from different academic disciplines, our future Pacific leaders, participated in training, research, and writing programs aimed at future public and private leaders in the region,” Palu said.

“We want more young people to become interested and involved with PCRIC learning and capacity-building programs. They will help the region develop solutions for its economic and social development priorities for the future.”

The purpose of the PCRIC internship program was to raise the students’ understanding about disaster risk management and financing instruments to support the Pacific region within a global movement of multi-country cooperation programs.

These initiatives are designed to leverage insurance and financial markets to strengthen country preparation and responses to natural disasters and to provide increased financial support to vulnerable populations especially affected by climate change.

“This internship program with PCRIC, although it started informally, has created a lot of impact on the students who participated,” Kumar says.

“This impactful work needs to continue especially when we’re so much in need and the region needs to come together in terms of adaptation and climate financing.”

“I look forward to PCRIC’s further collaborations with the university and its students so that they’re trained into these areas under the leadership of PCRIC staff, using their accumulated theoretical knowledge into practice when it comes to climate financing, mitigation and adaptation in the region.”

After receiving their certificates and awards, some of the interns expressed their thanks and gratitude for such a program.

“It was a privilege for me to work with the PCRIC team, even though we worked remotely with COVID in place. These types of training will help our nations as a whole to be prepared in times of disaster,” Brenda Ann Williams said.

“I would like to thank the PCRIC team for the wonderful opportunity that they have provided to the students of USP. This internship has been an exciting and amazing journey,” Lucy Sidal said.

“It was a good opportunity for me to learn what Fiji is doing about disaster risk management and how I can possibly put forth something based on my experiences. A lot of family and friends have villages in outer islands who suffer a lot from tropical cyclones,” Ratu Mosese Vamarasi Volavola said.

The program was designed in collaboration with GP3 Institute, a research organization that supports SDG-17 partnerships impacting more than 100 countries.

PCRIC works for the benefit of the island nations of the Pacific and is a specialist provider of disaster risk finance services and solutions to the region.

PCRIC delivers a program of support built on leading-edge technical assistance, targeted collaborations, and innovative product options. Its mission is to help nations better prepare, structure and manage finances to foster disaster resilience and ensure rapid access to funds when they are needed most.

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