The International Year of Forests (IYF) 2011 has the theme Forests for People, celebrating the central role of people in the sustainable management, conservation and development of our world's forests. The elements in the logo show just a few of the many reasons forests and trees are so important.

1. Forest and trees provide shelter for people and a home for plants and animals.
2. Forests are a source of food, medicine and clean water.
3. Forests play a vital role in maintaining a stable global climate and environment.

All of these elements, taken together, reinforce the message that forests are vital to the survival and wellbeing of people everywhere, all seven billion of us.

As in other regions of our planet, forests and trees play a significant role in the lives of Pacific Islanders - economically, socially, culturally and environmentally. In many Pacific Island countries, especially in the small islands and atoll countries, forests and trees are an important source of food, construction materials, fuel, medicine and countless other benefits.

During the 4th Regional Meeting of Heads of Agriculture and Forestry Services (HOAFs) held in Fiji in 2010, it was recommended that the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) organise a regional event to commemorate the International Year of Forests in 2011. With this in mind, Land Resouces Division (LRD), is offering three awards, and running a Poster and Essay Competition (particulars below) to recognise the contributions of individuals, groups, communities and companies that positively contribute to the sustainable management and development of forest and tree resources in their country.