An outreach programme to build local and community resilience to climate change in the Lakshadweep Archipelago
Communities in the Lakshwadeep Archipelago face an increasing threat of climate change and the
long-term habitability and well-being of their communities. The Nature Conservation Foundation
(NCF) climate change education and outreach project aims to establish durable communication networks
with influential local groups and institutions in the Lakshadweep Archipelago,
and use these ties to bridge the prevalent cause-and-effect information gap around climate change.
The project will be initiated on Kavaratti and Agatti islands by selecting around 10
suitable individuals on each island from across the administration, youth groups, fisherfolk,
educational institutions, women collectives and influential civil society members.
Using different outreach materials, four workshops will be conducted over a two-month
period with these members to instil in them pride and awareness on the rich biodiversity
surrounding their islands and make visible the increasing threats of climate change.
Post the workshops, the NCF will support the selected cohort to organise open biodiversity
exhibitions in Kavaratti and Agatti and share their knowledge. The eventual goal of the NCF
climate change and outreach project is to empower, educate, and mobilise the entire island populace.
The project will be subsequently refined and replicated in the remaining eight islands of the
archipelago in the future.
Kevin George is a firm believer in social development through knowledge sharing, He has contributed
to multiple community development and content dissemination platforms over a seven year-long
professional career. His varied range of interests and passions has allowed him to work in multiple
disciplines across diverse domains. He started as a liaison between alternate-energy innovators and
the government electricity board of Kerala during a tenure at Startup Village, India’s first
public-private powered startup incubator. He later spearheaded the operations and community engagement
function of a non-profit organisation that worked across the country to raise awareness and
participation in hardware maker culture. A parallel interest in wildlife and nature led to a periodic
engagement in various conservation efforts in his hometown and ultimately inspired him to join NCF.
He now work with the Oceans and Coasts Programme of NCF in Lakshadweep, leading efforts to initiate
dialogue and foster action with the local community around climate change and its impact on the islands.
SOMESH S. MENON
Somesh S Menon works with the Oceans and Coasts Programme at Nature Conservation
Foundation (NCF), Mysuru, and is currently engaged in executing a holistic community
outreach project focussed on preserving local biodiversity and communicating climate
change in the Lakshadweep Islands. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Madras
Christian College, Chennai and a Master’s in Development from Azim Premji University,
Bengaluru. His academic background has enabled him to engage with communities in diverse
geographies of India, including villagers affected by human-elephant conflict in the
villages of Sonitpur district in Assam and members of the Gond and Juang tribes in rural
Odisha. He began his career with the Government of Gujarat’s Higher Education Department
where he worked as a Research and Innovations Lead to implement the MHRD’s RUSA scheme in
Gujarat. His experience in the development sector included organising community-level
interventions with vulnerable youth affected by Gender Based Violence (GBV) across Delhi
NCR, Jaipur and Bhopal through a UN-Habitat supported project. Prior to joining NCF, he
worked as an editor with one of India’s largest education services company, writing on
critical issues in the country’s higher education sector and counselling thousands of
students through multiple digital platforms.
> View Next:Climate Change Communications and Outreach at the Grassroots through Community Radio Programme on ‘Adapting to Climate Change and Adversities in Agriculture’