Stories

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Dynamic and award-winning Tongan athlete, ‘Atamaama Tu’utafaiva, believes here is no such thing as “man’s” or “woman’s” sport. Photo: Talitha Project/Alokoulu Ulukivaiola   My name is ‘Atamaama Tu’utafaiva. I am 24 and come from the village of Kolofo’ou in Tonga. I play for the Ha’apai Island national rugby team. The first time I played rugby was in 2016 for the 15s team for the village of...
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Siunipa Pahulu after a rugby training session in Tonga. Photo: Talitha Project/Alokoulu Ulukivaiola   My name is Siunipa Pahulu. I turn 20 in November I come from the small Island of Ha’apai in Tonga, but I reside in Ha’ateiho, Tongatapu. I’m a seamstress and I want to be a fashion designer one day. I undertake rugby training every morning and afternoon, and during the day I sew clothes to support myself and my family. I started playing rugby in February this year...
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Father-daughter duo Kotoni and Vasa ‘I Vao Feleti, have been playing sports together since Vasa was in Class 1, in Tonga. It was very early on that former international rugby player Kotoni, saw “incredible potential” in his young daughter and decided to nurture it. Photo: Talitha Project/Alokoulu Ulukivaiola Vasa ‘I Vao Feleti   My name is Vasa Feleti, and I am 13 years old. I really like playing rugby 7s. The first time I played rugby, I...
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Otimau Mariano, 39, from Kiribati. Photo: UN Women/Jacqui Berrell There are so many men using their wife like punching bags, and it’s become normal, even if you stop them, the man will fight back with you, but this project reminds us of what should be normal.Since I joined this project, I have experienced a lot of change within myself. This project has helped me realise I want peace. This change was a result of the Strengthening Peaceful Villages training. In the training, I...
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“If you love God, how can you abuse your wife, your children? Sister Doreen, as she is simply known, has supported thousands of women and children survivors of domestic violence, raised funds to build two safe homes, and is at the forefront of the nation’s SAFENET1 approach of improving support services for survivors. As a young village girl growing up in the Makira-Ulawa Province of Solomon Islands she knew something was “not right”.
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Teretia Tokam, Coordinator of the Kiribati Women and Children Support Centre (KWCSC). Photo courtesy of Tara Chetty/Pacific Women Support Unit I think [often] about my journey so far and all my experiences bringing me to this point where I coordinate the Centre. Some experiences have been really tough, and they broke me down, but they also made me strong and able to give a voice to women and be supportive to women who are being abused. There was one experience that was a turning...
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Solomon Islands has high vulnerability to natural disasters such as cyclones, high tides, floods and earthquakes, and in 2020 the Pacific Island country experienced the combined impacts of Tropical Cyclone Harold and the COVID-19 crisis.
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The review of an assessment tool used after a disaster is helping strengthen national mechanisms in responding to the needs of women, girls and vulnerable groups in Solomon Islands, following a humanitarian crisis.
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Women’s empowerment and gender equality are defined as a key priority of the Solomon Islands Government. Ministers in all sectors share the responsibility for ensuring and achieving equal rights with men, especially in the lands sector.
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Close to 30 women gathered in Honiara, Solomon Islands last week to research, develop and validate gender-inclusive recommendations to the Traditional Governance, Customs and Facilitation Bill (TGCFB), tailored to reflect the unique challenges women face, and work with the Ministry of Women, Youth, Children and Family Affair to ensure women’s and girls’ voices are heard and included when adopting the Bill.
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The Malaita Provincial Government of Solomon Islands received the additional infrastructure work done to the Auki Market through the Markets for Change [M4C] project, in the presence of partners including representatives of the Australian High Commission and the Market Vendors Association, in a hand-over ceremony last week, that observed local custom and protocol.
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[Press release]   Photo courtesy of UNDP Solomon Islands/ Andrew Tahisi.   Photo courtesy of UNDP Solomon Islands/ Andrew Tahisi. Solomon Islands, February 2021 – More than 100 landholding groups’ representatives including 60 women leaders from three provinces – Guadalcanal, Malaita and Western Provinces will participate in a series of consultation and awareness programs to learn how to make customary land available and accessible for the future...
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This is a series of articles from the Inclusive Governance of Natural Resources (IGNR) project in Solomon Islands, the heroines of which are local leaders who participated in the Traditional Governance and Facilitation Bill consultations organized by the IGNR project this year.
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Partners of the Markets for Change (M4C) project in the Solomon Islands, including the Hon. Freda Tuki Rangirei, Minister for Women, Youth, Children and Family Affairs and H.E Dr Lachlan Strahan, the Australian High Commissioner, joined other stakeholder representatives from the national and provincial governments, municipal councils and market vendor associations, for the M4C Phase II Design Validation Workshop today.
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Riko Nagu is a women’s and girls’ rights activist, member of the United Church Women’s Fellowship group. I have been living, working and staying with rural women and girls from my community for my entire life. Only with time, when I became older and started working as a teacher, I began to see injustice and inequality. I’ve started recognizing cultural approaches which are harmful and, at the same time, prevent
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My story begins with my tribe. I was chosen to represent my people on some legal issues with regards to land at the Chiefs hearing at the tribal level in local courts and the High Court. Over time, I realized I want to know more so I could contribute more and represent my tribe and my people everywhere.
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For the first time ever, prevalence data is available on men’s use of violence, alongside women’s experience of violence in Kiribati. This data and its key findings are from the ‘South Tarawa Healthy Living Study: An Impact Evaluation of the Strengthening Peaceful Villages (SPV) Violence Prevention Intervention in Kiribati’ which collected data related to community attitudes and behaviours on violence against women and girls in South Tarawa.
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Gender-based violence crisis centres from six countries in the Pacific have faced not only the COVID-19 crisis, but also in some countries, the dual impact of a tropical cyclone. UN Women’s Ending Violence Against Women and Girls programme works in close collaboration with government, civil society organisations, communities and other partners to promote gender equality, prevent violence against women and girls, and increase access to quality response services for survivors, especially during emergencies.
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As COVID-19 started making headlines back in January, crisis centres for survivors of violence against women in the Pacific started preparing for the possible implications, should it reach their shores. Having experienced multiple natural disasters and emergencies over the years, they knew that rates and severity of domestic violence escalate during crises, often coupled with disruptions to support services and a deprioritization of women and girls’ safety by state, police and other essential services.
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Solomon Sisimia, Provincial Police Commander, speaks with officers at the Central Police Station in Malaita. Photo: UN Women/Jacqui Berrell “I’ve had to rescue women very early in the morning, sometimes 3 a.m., to get them out of an abusive house,” says Solomon Sisimia, Provincial Police Commander in the Solomon Islands. As a fresh-faced 22-year-old recruit from the island of Malaita, he was driven by the determination to curb family violence. “I grew up in a...