Recovery and reconstruction

On 20 April 2016, Australia announced an additional package of $20 million to support longer term recovery and reconstruction efforts following Tropical Cyclone (TC) Winston. This funding is focused on returning life to normal in Fiji by rebuilding critical infrastructure.

Australia is helping the Fiji Government to rebuild schools and health facilities destroyed by the cyclone, replace damaged medical equipment and restore water and sanitation services. Australia is also repairing damaged markets and building accommodation facilities for women vendors to enable farmers and vendors to return to work. Australia’s focus throughout the recovery work has been on building stronger, more resilient buildings, complying with Fiji’s National Building Code and ensuring that all facilities are inclusive for women, children and people with disabilities.

The Australian-funded Markets for Change project assisted women like Manjula Wati to re-establish their market stalls just two weeks after Cyclone Winston. Credit: UN Women/Murray Lloyd
The Australian-funded Markets for Change project assisted women like Manjula Wati to re-establish their market stalls just two weeks after Cyclone Winston. Credit: UN Women/Murray Lloyd

Recovery support to education

Australia has committed $14 million to the education sector, working with the Fiji Government to repair or rebuild 34 damaged or destroyed schools.

Repairs to 16 schools with minor damage were completed in late 2016 and the rebuilding of 18 schools that sustained more significant damage began in November 2016. Of these 18 schools, 12 are in Ra province and six are on Koro island. Twelve schools in Ra and one school in Koro have been formally handed over to the Fiji government, with the remaining five schools in Koro due for completion in 2018. The 18 schools will meet or exceed Fiji’s National Building Code, and one school has been designed to withstand a Category 5 wind speed, to act as an evacuation point if needed. 

Recovery support to health

Australia has committed $3 million to repair health facilities, provide medical equipment and restore water and sanitation services.

The largest project is the Waimaro Health Centre in Ra Province. After the Centre was destroyed by TC Winston, Australia provided a temporary nursing station to allow services to continue at the site.  The Health Centre has been upgraded to be a larger and a better-adapted building, able to provide more specialised services to the surrounding area. The Government of Fiji also co-financed the building of medical staff quarters.  As of 2018, the newly built, upgraded and equipped Waimaro Health Centre was officially handed over to the Government of Fiji. 

Australia is also supporting the upgrade of the Nasau Health Centre on Koro island, which was damaged during TC Winston. The work commenced in January and is expected to be completed in 2018, enabling expectant mothers to access quality reproductive health services on Koro.

Along with support to health facilities, Australia has been working with partners to restore water and sanitation services to remote communities. This has included building toilets in villages and helping re-establish access to water in relocated communities on Koro.

Recovery support to markets

Of the recovery funding, Australia committed $3 million to repairing or rebuilding markets damaged by TC Winston.

The Rakiraki Municipal Market, an excellent example of co-financing between the Australian and Fijian Governments, with Australia contributing $FJD3.2 million (approximately AUD2 million) and Fiji providing the remaining FJD2.64 million (AUD$1.67 million).  The majority of the 220 market vendors are women from rural villages in Ra Province. The new women’s accommodation centre Australia is building with the market will ensure that they are able to sell their goods and maintain their income at all times. The Rakiraki market is expected to be completed in late 2018.

Australia’s support to Koro island

Koro island was one of the worst affected parts of Fiji following TC Winston. The HMAS Canberra, one of Australia’s largest naval vessels, was positioned off Koro for almost one month following the cyclone, providing engineering teams that restored water supply, cleared debris, repaired schools and health facilities, and supported immediate shelter needs. Since then, we have continued to support the rebuilding of schools and health facilities, and the restoration of water and sanitation facilities. This fact sheet provides an overview of ongoing recovery support.

Infographic: Australia's response to help Fiji recover from Tropical Cyclone Winston

Koro Island was one of the worst affected parts of Fiji following TC Winston. The HMAS Canberra, one of Australia’s largest naval vessels, was positioned off Koro for almost one month following the cyclone, providing engineering teams that restored water supply, cleared debris, repaired schools and health facilities, and supported immediate shelter needs. Since then, we have continued to support the rebuilding of schools and health facilities, and the restoration of water and sanitation facilities. This fact sheet provides an overview of ongoing recovery support.

View a larger version of this infographic

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Last Updated: 25 October 2018
On 28 September 2017, Australia’s former High Commissioner to Fiji, Ms Margaret Twomey, and Fiji’s Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, the Hon. Inia Seruiratu, officiated the opening of two schools in Ra District.
Since then, a further two have been completed and we expect the 14 remaining schools to be complete in early 2018. On 28 September 2017, Australia’s former High Commissioner to Fiji, Ms Margaret Twomey, and Fiji’s Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, the Hon. Inia Seruiratu, officiated the opening of two schools in Ra District.
Since then, a further two have been completed and we expect the 14 remaining schools to be complete in early 2018.
On 28 September 2017, Australia’s former High Commissioner to Fiji, Ms Margaret Twomey, and Fiji’s Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management, the Hon. Inia Seruiratu, officiated the opening of two schools in Ra District.
Since then, a further two have been completed and we expect the 14 remaining schools to be complete in early 2018.

Barotu Primary School in Ra Province after TC Winston
Barotu Primary School in Ra Province after TC Winston

The new library at Barotu Primary School has been built to withstand Category 5 wind speeds
The new library at Barotu Primary School has been built to withstand Category 5 wind speeds

The Early Childhood Education Centre at Vatukacevaceva Village School was completely destroyed by TC Winston.
The Early Childhood Education Centre at Vatukacevaceva Village School was completely destroyed by TC Winston.

The new Early Childhood Education centre will bring much joy to the children from the surrounding villages in this remote part of Ra province.
The new Early Childhood Education centre will bring much joy to the children from the surrounding villages in this remote part of Ra province.

Nabasovi District School is the first school rebuilt on Koro island, with the others not far behind
Nabasovi District School is the first school rebuilt on Koro island, with the others not far behind

In the foreground are the remains of the destroyed Waimaro Nursing Station and temporary Nursing Station. In the foreground are the remains of the destroyed Waimaro Nursing Station and temporary Nursing Station.
In the foreground are the remains of the destroyed Waimaro Nursing Station and temporary Nursing Station.

Work is well underway at the Waimaro Health Centre in Ra Province.
Work is well underway at the Waimaro Health Centre in Ra Province.