Northern Islands Market Vendors host first ever Annual General Meeting


[Joint Press Release]

Vanuatu — More than 300 market vendors from around Santo island and offshore, under the Northern Islands Market Vendor Association, have gathered for their first Annual General Meeting.

"This is the first time for us to have an AGM since the Association was set up," says Marie Vuti, President of the Northern Islands Market Vendor Association (MVA).

Northern Island Market Vendor Association join independence 2016 banner. Photo: UN Women

"I would like to thank the Luganville Municipal Council, Sanma Provincial Government Council, Honourable Minister Alfred Maoh and UN Women's Markets for Change project for sponsoring the AGM," she said.

The one-day Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held at the Sanma Provincial Government Council's Chiefs Nakamal, on 7 November, as part of ongoing support for the Market Vendors Association under the UN Women's Market for Change (M4C) project.

Other M4C support includes the development of the Association's management and operational systems, the MVA's alignment with good governance standards, and that members are supported to ensure these systems are understood and implemented to promote continuity of the Association and to serve the needs of the membership.

"I would like to congratulate the Northern Islands MVA on this historical milestone," says Christina Bare-Karae UN Women M4C Project Manager.

Vendors at the Northern Islands MVA Annual General Meeting. Photo: UN Women

"Through this AGM, you ensure transparency and accountability of the Association to your members and reaffirm your commitment to work together with the Luganville market vendors and Luganville Municipal Council to ensure safe, inclusive and non-discriminatory market environment for the vendors."

The Northern Islands MVA gained its certification under Charitable Associations (Incorporation) Act in July 2015, giving the association legal standing to engage in decision-making, and negotiate improvements and operating conditions on behalf of market vendors with Luganville market management and Luganville Municipal Council. It is led by an interim executive committee elected in 2016 to oversee all operations and management of the Association.

UN Women's Markets for Change (M4C) project is a key component of its Women's Economic Empowerment programme. M4C is a six-year, multi-country initiative that aims to ensure marketplaces in rural and urban areas of Fiji, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu are safe, inclusive and non-discriminatory, promoting gender equality and women's empowerment. A UN Women project, Markets for Change is principally funded by the Australian Government.

Media enquiries should be directed to:

Trisha Toangwera
Communications and M&E Officer, UN Women Field Office, Vanuatu
Phone: +678 25910 ext 102 or Mobile: +678 7349315
Email: [ Click to reveal ]


UN Women's Markets for Change (M4C) project: M4C is the flagship project within the UN Women's programme for Women's Economic Empowerment in the Pacific region. Between 75-90 per cent of vendors working at Pacific marketplaces are women and their earnings often make up a significant portion of the incomes of many poor households. Despite this, women are often excluded from market governance and decision-making. M4C works with stakeholders, service providers and the market vendors themselves to: build and support inclusive, effective and representative advocacy groups; deliver appropriate services, training and interventions; ensure women's voices are heard and taken into account at the decision-making level; and to improve physical infrastructure and operating systems.

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