ETF awards 6 scholarships to MEECC employees | 19 August 2019
As part of the activities organised to commemorate its 25th anniversary, the Environment Trust Fund (ETF) will be awarding six scholarships, amounting to R3 million to in-service employees at the Ministry of Environment, Energy and Climate Change (MEECC).
In a brief ceremony at the Botanical Gardens on Friday, a grant agreement between the ETF and the Agency for Human Resource Development (ANHRD) and a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between ETF and the ministry was signed and three prospective students who are set to commence their programmes in September, were presented with their letters of offer.
In total, 6 staff will benefit from the scholarships with three joining the programme this year, a further 2 in 2020 and 1 individual has been sponsored to study environmental science with a specialisation in waste management at an overseas university. They will be following the Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science at the University of Seychelles (UniSey).
Prior to the signings and exchange of letters, chairperson of ETF, Denis Matatiken, addressed all present, including the Minister for Environment, Energy and Climate Change Wallace Cosgrow, principal secretary for environment Alain de Comarmond, principal secretary for climate change Wills Agricole and senior staff of the ministry and the prospective students themselves noting the need to mitigate emerging challenges that are impacting on the local environment.
“We need to equip more people to try and find solutions to these problems. The Board of ETF has taken a strategic decision to invest in people, invest in scholarships to internal staff of the ministry and this comes at an opportune time. This is an opportunity to acquire knowledge and new skills so you can help towards solving the most complex and emerging environmental issues. We need new ideas to take care of our environment,” Mr Matatiken stated.
Similarly, Minister Cosgrow emphasised the need for more qualified professionals to contribute ideas as to how to sustain and maintain our environment.
“I find it encouraging that ETF can bring much needed financial support to governmental agencies, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and volunteers to the implementation of projects that contribute towards sustainable development. With the environment being dynamic and complex, continuous studies and research are required to further our understanding and improve its management. We need more scientists and scientific knowledge to better protect our land and sea which form part of our natural heritage to sustain our livelihood and well-being,” Minister Cosgrow asserted.
Following the speeches, Mr Matatiken signed two agreements, one with chief executive officer of ANHRD Nadia Lauricourt and the other with the MEECC, signed by PS de Comarmond.
Letters of offer where then exchanged with the three employees, namely, Allen Comettant, Mersiah Rose and Jean-Claude Labrosse who will be commencing their programmes as from September 2.
Mr Comettant, who is a graphic artist with the ministry, expressed his happiness at having been granted the opportunity to broaden his knowledge in a new field of study for him.
“I think the scholarship will redefine my character as a person since it is a new field and it will also serve to complement my artistic side as I will see things in a more scientific light than before so this may show through my art. Our national aim is on sustainable development and a sustainable lifestyle so I think I can bring about a change in the mindsets of our people and to make them more environmentally aware,” Mr Comettant stated.
The ETF was established in 1994. It funds projects that contribute to sustainable development and its principles and which contribute to the protection, preservation and improvement of the natural environment. It generates funds through various means including the environmental levy on utilities such as water