Increasing community level resilience in the face of climate change
Inauguration of the Quatre Soeurs Refuge Centre
March 15, 2023
The inauguration of the Quatre Soeurs Refuge Centre held on Tuesday 14 March 2023 is a significant step towards enhancing the resilience of coastal communities in the face of climate change. Built under the “Climate Change Adaptation Programme in the Coastal Zone of Mauritius” project, the centre provides an emergency shelter for exposed communities of the South-East coast of Mauritius during times of climate-related hazards and threats.
The construction of the Quatre Soeurs Refuge Centre was made possible through grant funding from the Adaptation Fund under the Kyoto Protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. This eco-friendly building using rainwater harvesting systems and a structure that optimizes the use of natural light, can accommodate approximately 1000 individuals. The construction is also in line with the Global United Nations policy of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, which focuses on actions necessary to prevent new risks, reduce existing risk, and limit their impacts on the livelihoods, health and other assets of communities and countries.
The inauguration of the refuge centre was attended by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Mauritius, and other Ministers and officers of various ministries and district councils and by representatives of United Nations agencies in Mauritius. The Resident Coordinator of the United Nations for Mauritius and Seychelles commended the Government of Mauritius for the local measures taken to address the impacts of climate change and reiterated the UN family’s support to Mauritius “in mobilizing financial and technical resources to help Mauritius achieve its climate objective and build its climate resilience.”
In addition to serving as an emergency shelter, the centre will also be used by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Centre, other Ministries, and public institutions for simulation exercises and sensitization campaigns to better prepare the community and government officers to potential climate shocks. The inauguration of the Quatre Soeurs Refuge Centre is a testament to the commitment of the Government of Mauritius and the United Nations in building local community resilience and taking action towards climate change adaptation.