2014 is the International Year of SIDS, which will celebrate the contributions that SIDS have made to the world and will help raise awareness of the UN Conference on Small Island Developing States happening in Apia, Samoa.
Countries forming part of the SIDS, including Mauritius, are the most vulnerable towards the challenges posed by climate change and global warming.  SIDS struggle the most with sustainable development issues, unlike the rest of the world, due to their isolation, size, small resource base and vulnerability to climate change. Thing of which is affecting numerous issues linked to poverty and development today including: hunger, agriculture, health, labor, water, disasters and displacement.
Role of Non-Government Organisations (NGOs)
NGOs and other civil society groups are not only stakeholders in governance, but also a driving force behind greater international cooperation through the active mobilization of public support for international agreements.
NGOs are growing in importance in global politics, particularly their ability to mediate between international institutions and individuals.
While some NGOs enjoy excellent access to meetings and have good relations with UN officials and delegations, governments sometimes react negatively to NGO advocacy and seek to restrict NGO opportunities.  Unfortunately, this has proved to be true in Mauritius as our organisation, the Plateforme Citoyenne has received no support in any sort, from the government to participate to the SIDS Conference. It is thanks to the community who believe in our vision for sustainable development that our voices will be heard by other stakeholders.
Our immersion in the Samoan’s society
We reached Samoa Islands last Monday morning and the Pre-Conference events are scheduled to start today. We seize this opportunity to meet with locals, learn more about their culture and way of life and discover their unspoilt landscape and nature.
One of the first things we noticed in Samoa from our way to the airport was the nostalgic Mauritian feel of the 1950s. On perusing vintage photos of Mauritius, it certainly looks like a step down in memory lane. From our perspective, one of the reasons may be linked to the lack of cultural and technological pollution from the modern world. Indeed, the lifestyle seems to be centred on family ties rather than a portal linking us to a virtual world. This can be moreover seen as anchored in the very core of the society through its traditional planning ideologies, which is still very much valid in the 21st century.