Name: Joe Keba
Country: Solomon Islands
Location: Ngella, Central Province

Joseph lives in Leitongo, a village located in the Sandfly Islands of Ngella, Central Province, Solomon Islands. Under the leadership and guidance of the Foundation of the People of the South Pacific International (FSPI) and local partner Solomon Islands Development Trust (SIDT), Joe is currently employed as a village demonstration worker (VDW) for the Ngella communities. Joe’s work in Gela has seen the declaration of tabus grow from one to six villages in 2002 to nearly 20 in 2006. In addition, Gela has seen a revival of tabus in many villages elsewhere. Since 2002, Joe’s work and commitment to the communities’ established tabus in the Sandfly areas has been instrumental in achieving progress in conserving habitat and resources and the development of the Communities and Coasts programs. Through his efforts and contributions, more communities around Ngella had shown interest in establishing tabus at their sites.

Joe’s involvement in community work stems from being a member of the Solomon Islands Development Trust (SIDT) Community Action Theatre Group, which performs drama shows on health issues as well as environmental issues such as logging and overharvesting of marine resources. His participation and contributions led to some important developments and success of this theatre group in reaching communities throughout the Solomon Islands and the wider Pacific region. Seeing Joe’s capabilities, FSPI/SIDT took him on board to work as a village demonstration worker, a position to which he continues to be dedicated.

Photo: Joseph Keba demonstrating seaweed farming in Langa Langa Lagoon, by Thomas Bebeu