Going beyond community-based water planning for climate resilience in Solomon Islands

Panel members sit below a large screen on the main stage at SIWI World Water Week
Panel members on the centre stage at World Water Week during the film screening and panel discussion with Collin Benjamin, Solomon Islands National University on the far right, ahead of his film screening.

Solomon Islands National University’s own Collin Benjamin was up in lights on the centre stage of SIWI World Water Week for an inaugural film screening and panel discussion where the audience had the opportunity to view and hear insights from filmmakers about how organisations across the globe are tackling WASH challenges and behaviour change through film. Collin’s film was chosen as one of four films to be shown with the main topic of discussion being: how to be innovative in creating long-term impact for improved WASH.

“Those who tell stories rule the world. Video storytelling has the power to communicate, inspire and engage people on complicated, taboo subjects.”

Hosted by Tom Freyberg, the session showcased films from around the world, from Malawi to Nepal, including Collin’s film from Solomon Islands which focuses on work being undertaken as part of Water for Women WASH and research projects being delivered by Plan International, Live and Learn Environmental Education, Solomon Islands National University, International WaterCentre at Griffith University and Earth Water People.

The short film was produced to share key elements of the Community-based Water Security Improvement Planning (CWSIP) approach developed for the Solomon Islands (Oceania). Conventional Water Safety Planning was modified to suit the local context, in particular, to improve social inclusion in the process and outcomes, to improve capacity development, to stimulate interest and motivation amongst communities, and to improve climate resilience.

Watch the film

The film explores how climate resilience is addressed through facilitation of Tok Stori sessions with community members to explore climate/weather changes and events of the past, the effects on the water supply system, and the subsequent impacts to people. This becomes the basis for identifying potential consequences of future events and change, and identifying adaptation measures. Climate resilience is also enhanced by considering the whole water cycle - water sources may lie outside the community's boundary, requiring an understanding of water quality/quantity pathways, and engaging with other catchment stakeholders. 

The CWSIP approach is integrated into the WASH program of Plan International and Live and Learn Environmental Education, funded by the Australian Government's Water for Women Fund to improve WASH in 50 rural communities. International WaterCentre and Solomon Islands National University worked with these partners to research and develop a locally-effective community planning approach (CWSIP).

Collin Benjamin on stage at World Water Week

“People in the communities were so excited to be part of this video… they want to share their stories that explain things to other people in other communities. Me too, I love it and we learn from them and they learn from us and we all connect and interact together… their voices have been heard through video”

Collin Benjamin on the power of filmmaking in creating change within the community during the panel discussion

You can learn more about the CWSIP approach and outcomes in the case study below.

Other films shown during the session: 


This session was proudly convened by International WaterCentre at Griffith University, Solomon Islands National University, Plan International Australian and Plan International Pacific, Live and Learn Environmental Education
Water for Women and Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

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