11 Ending Violence against Women projects to receive grants and training from UN Women

Date: Thursday, December 11, 2014

Press Release

Suva - The civil society organisations and government departments will receive grants from a pool of almost US$700,000, as well as capacity building and technical support over the next two to three years as a result of the latest call for applications.

Pacific Fund is a key component of UN Women’s Ending Violence against Women and Girls programme and was established in 2009 to support innovative projects working to prevent violence and provide services to survivors. It aims to help fill two of the main gaps experienced by many organisations and governments in the Pacific – funding and organisational capacity.

Pacific Fund grantee House of Sarah’s Breaking the Silence Sunday in Suva. Photo: UN Women/Ayako Ioroi.
Pacific Fund grantee House of Sarah’s Breaking the Silence Sunday in Suva. Photo: UN Women/Ayako Ioroi

Funded organisations have access to a range of capacity development trainings that focus on gender-responsive and human rights based approaches, lobbying and advocacy for policy and legislative change, organisational management, integrated services for survivors of violence against women, and preventative actions to promote the elimination of violence against women.

UN Women’s Ending Violence against Women and Girls programme specialist, Melissa Alvarado says she and her team are looking forward to working with the latest grant recipient organisations.

“We’ve already seen some fantastic developments for many of the organisations we’ve been working with since the Fund started, both in the services they provide and within the organisations themselves. It’s exciting to see the kind of change these grants and targeted capacity development can create on the ground for women and girls in Fiji. We are honoured to partner with organisations that are powerful change agents such as these.”

The new grant recipients are:


House of Sarah: Setting up a support service within the Anglican Church – Diocese of Polynesia for survivors of violence against women and girls, irrespective of religious backgrounds; training of clergy and leaders of women, youth and men’s groups as well as assisting in the implementation of the church’s organisational policy of zero tolerance within homes, schools, settlements and local parishes.

Medical Services Pacific: Educating students to recognise violence against women and girls and access assistance and services in six schools across the Central and Western divisions of Fiji.

Department for Women: Evaluating the Zero Tolerance Violence Free Communities project, which aims to generate community-based support, information, education and training, advice and referrals to other support services.

Fiji Girl Guides Association: After adapting the “Voices against Violence” co-educational curriculum developed in 2013 by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts and UN Women, the Fiji Girl Guides Association plans to roll out the curriculum in 189 schools around the country. The non-formal curriculum is designed for young people aged from 5 to 25 to learn and understand gender, the root causes of violence in their communities, ways to educate and work with their peers and communities to prevent such violence, and where to access support if they experience violence – with modules designed specifically for each age range.


Buka General Hospital Support Centre: Establishing a referral service within the main hospital in Buka, Bougainville where survivors can access information about services and legal rights, as well as training volunteers so that survivors can access immediate help within the justice sector.


Vois Blong Ol Meri: Engaging media to improve gender-sensitive reporting on violence against women and girls and in the documentation of survivors’ experiences; building a resource and reference collection on studies on ending violence against women and girls.


Ma’a Fafine Moe Famili: Working with men in Tonga to address attitudes and behaviour to promote non-violence amongst young and older men.

Ministry of Internal Affairs: Addressing the implementation of the Gender Equality Policy and Family Protection Act (2013) in Tonga through technical training for police, justice and health providers on their roles in the implementation of the legislation and engaging communities in building respectful relationships in families.

Tonga Women and Children Crisis Centre: Strengthening the provision of services, prevention initiatives and media engagement to communicate messages on ending violence against women and girls. Services support involves working with the local hospital to provide safe and confidential services for survivors. The prevention includes training 60 police officers on the “No Drop Policy”, women’s human rights and conducting the “Stay Safe” programme in rural schools on the main island of Tongatapu to help teachers and students recognise what violent and abusive behaviour is.

Tonga National Centre for Women and Children: Increasing survivors’ access to assistance through a domestic violence helpline.  This includes working with a private telephone company, as well as local government and faith-based organisations to establish a referral and temporary shelters in six rural areas. It also includes counselling, legal assistance and preventing violence before it starts through working with men and boys on gender awareness and zero tolerance to violence.


Vanuatu Council of Churches: Supporting the 23 member churches in developing gender-responsive policies and programmes on violence against women, as well as strengthening their engagement and actions to address and end violence against women.

At the media announcement of the Fiji grant recipients Reverend Sereima Lomaloma, chairperson of the House of Sarah Management Committee said she feels blessed and fortunate that the project had been selected.

“Our aim is to significantly change the culture, behaviour and perceptions of church leaders so that churches are safe and more responsive to victims and survivors of violence as well as advocates for ending violence against women.”                                                                                                                                                                              

The Pacific Fund covers eight Pacific countries – Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu – and has active grant recipients in seven of these countries. It is principally funded by the Australian Government and also receives support from UN Women’s National Committees in Australia and New Zealand.

For further information please visit:


Media enquiries should be directed to:

Ellie van Baaren
Regional communications and media specialist
UN Women
Phone: (+679) 330 1178 ext 125
Email: ellie.vanbaaren@unwomen.org

Sereana Narayan
Communications Associate
UN Women
Phone: (+679) 330 1178 ext 120 
Email: sereana.narayan@unwomen.org


About UN Women’s Pacific Regional Ending Violence against Women Facility Fund (Pacific Fund)

The Pacific Fund is central to UN Women’s work on Ending Violence against Women and Girls in the Pacific. It was established in 2009 and offers NGOs and governments grants of up to US$100,000 for projects aimed at ending violence against women and girls, as well as an extensive capacity building programme. Since the Fund was established 49 grants have been authorized – a total of more than US$1.9 million. The Pacific Fund is supported in large part by Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Find out more about the Pacific Fund: Project brief: the Pacific Regional Ending Violence Against Women Facility Fund (PDF)

About UN Women and the Multi-Country Office (MCO) in Fiji

The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) was created at the July 2010 United Nations General Assembly. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide. The MCO covers 14 Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs): Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Republic of Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. The Fiji MCO works with four key programmes: Women’s Economic Empowerment; Ending Violence Against Women; Advancing Gender Justice in the Pacific; and Increasing Community Resilience through Empowerment of Women to Address Climate Change and Natural Hazards Programme to progress with gender equality and women’s empowerment in the Pacific.