The competition is being organised as a key output of the “Strengthening Capacities of Early Warning and Response for Tsunamis and Other Coastal Hazards in the Caribbean” Project, being sponsored by the European Commission Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO); through its Department’s Disaster Preparedness Programme (DIPECHO). The project is being implemented by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO/IOC) and its Caribbean Tsunami Information Centre (CTIC), as well as the Caribbean Disaster Management Agency (CDEMA), as an implementation partner. The contest targets participants from five (5) Project Participating Countries and is centered around the CARIBE WAVE regional tsunami exercises, which is executed by the Intergovernmental Coordinating Group for the Tsunami and Other Coastal Hazards Warning System for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions (ICG/CARIBE EWS). The competition is being executed by the CTIC and the University of the West Indies Seismic Research Centre (SRC) in association with the UNESCO Cluster Office for the Caribbean, as well as the National Commissions for UNESCO and Ministries of Education in the five (5) participating countries.
In addition, this school competition also aims to contribute to the implementation of Objective 3 of UNESCO’s SIDS Action Plan, which seeks to “increase resilience and adaptation of SIDS in the face of environmental challenges, including those related to climate change, tsunami or other hazards”, specifically by the following action:
Action 3.1 – Integrate climate change knowledge and action in policies, development programmes and educational programmes through climate change ESD and the Sandwatch Programme.
Furthermore, with the additional support of the Kingston UNESCO Cluster Office for the Caribbean, the competition also aims to contribute to the implementation of their Special Initiative for the Caribbean (SPIC), which addresses the thematic priority 2 (Climate change) with two areas of focus:
Area of focus 4: Resilience of communities to disasters and climate change through cultural and natural resource initiatives.
Area of focus 5: Climate change response through education and communication
The visual art competition encourages students to explore and better understand their natural surroundings through artistic expression. It is geared towards creating and raising awareness of the tsunami hazard and promoting an improved understanding of geologic phenomena and emergency response systems in Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominican Republic, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago and as an activity contributing to the recognition of World Tsunami Awareness Day (WTAD) 2019.