Asau, Savaii (April 29, 2017): Following the launch of a new partnership lead by Conservation International, Disney’s Moana, the Samoa Voyaging Society (SVS), and the Government of Samoa with further support from Okeanos – Foundation for the Sea and United States Embassy over 1,000 people from across Samoa have viewed Disney’s Moana movie via a travelling outdoor cinema.
Building on the values of the film, villagers also took part in conservation awareness and educational activities provided by the travelling project team consisting of SVS crew, cultural, environment and social experts who visited each location via Gaualofa, a traditional double hull canoe.
The Moana film was screened via open air cinema in eight villages, three in Upolu, one in Manono and four in Savaii. The viewers ranged from children, to men and women of all ages and village leaders who came out in droves to see the film, and take part in the conservation awareness and education activities.
“We were very impressed by the participation across Samoa, and proud that we could deliver the message of sustainable environmental management in a way that more people can connect with,” said Schannel van Dijken, President of the Samoa Voyaging Society and Marine Program Director, for Conservation International Samoa.
Officers from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, the Samoa Conservation Society and the Samoa Voyaging Society presented on a variety of issues including waste management, marine conservation and terrestrial issues as well as traditional navigation at all locations.
“This collaboration was certainly one of a kind and has been an amazing journey for everyone involved. The highlight was when engaging youth and young kids. They were very receptive and open and very much aware on some if the environmental issues our islands face.
The Sa Moana Folauga awareness campaign strengthened the ideas our young people have about the environment taking them to the next step of environmental stewardship,” said Samantha Kwan, Senior Officer at Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.
The villages of Apia, Satitoa, Poutasi, Salua Manono tai, Siufaga, Lelepa, and Asau were instrumental in the success of the project.
During the project sail, van Dijken acknowledged the important contribution of Radio Polynesia, Spacific Marketing, Amoa Resort, Pure Ocean, Dive Savai’i, Le Lagoto Resort, Lee Transport, Savai’i Samoa Tourism Association, and Vaimoana Seaside Lodge to ensuring the participation of wider communities.
“We are extremely humbled and proud of how this project has turned out. When we originally put together the concept to Disney to support us in taking the movie around Samoa, we knew it would be well received, however, the actual response we have received from the communities has been overwhelming, and more communities are asking for us to visit now”, van Dijken said.
The Outreach was made possible with the assistance and collaboration of the following partners: Disney, Conservation International (CI), Samoa Voyaging Society - Aiga Folau o Samoa (SVS), Okeanos – Foundation for the Sea, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MNRE), Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF), US Embassy Samoa, Radio Polynesia, Samoa Conservation Society (SCS), Eveni Pacific, Specific Marketing, Youth Climate Action Network, Samoa Hotel Association, Orator Hotel, Amoa Resort, Elaine’s Quality Furnishing, Manulele Uga Sarai and Family in Moata’a, Dive Savai’I, Carlos Export Fishing, Le Lagoto Resort, Lee Transport, Silva Transport, Pure Ocean, Savai’i Samoa Tourism Association, Vaimoana Seaside Lodge.