Last week, the Niue Island Organic Farmers Association (NIOFA) launched a comic book titled Muka Fonua: The 5 Secrets. This comic book was distributed to the children of ECE, primary school and Niue High School, raising awareness around the issues of harmful and dangerous substances used in farming, plantation and cultivation.
Muka-Fonua: The 5 Secrets was written, produced and designed by JinNam Hopotoa of CFI-Multimedia Productions. The five secrets health, ecology, fairness, care and culture and traditions for ethical agriculture.
It is an initiative project of NIOFA in collaboration with the Ridge to Reef Project.
BCN News was able to speak with NIOFA manager Jamal Talagi-Veidreyaki yesterday morning.
“The comic book is primarily for early childhood development so that they are able to understand and relate more to it and be more attracted to the visuals and the way that it is written so that they can understand the organic processes or farming methods. It emphasises on our traditional principles which is traditional knowledge, care and also on the organic principles under PoetCom under SPC.”
Jamal says that this book also serves the purpose of raising awareness around the impacts of agricultural chemicals as harmful to our way of life.
“It’s important to raise awareness on the various agricultural practices here on the island and the impacts of agriculture on our health, the environment and our water.”
“We would like to emphasise on the importance for us as our people to think about these things and the impacts of the agricultural chemicals especially on our health. It’s really important for the kids to learn at a very young age and this way the comic books can be both entertaining and a learning tool,” says Jamal.
Jamal told BCN News that copies of the comic book will also be distributed to schools in Auckland, New Zealand. Due to being primarily distributed for children, there is a limited amount of copies.
If you would like to obtain a copy, you can contact the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) or the Niue Island Organic Farmers Association Committee at their Facebook Page.