In the first six months of 2012 FemLINKPACIFIC has worked together with our rural network to use available media and ICTs, including community radio and television simulcasts and mainstream media strategies to raise the level of awareness of rural human security priorities particularly as a response to the devastating floods of the 1st quarter of the year, as well as a platform to integrate the outcomes of the Fiji Women’s Forum in community dialogue and discussions.
Between April – June, 82 women leaders representing a collective membership of more than 800 women from a diverse range of local clubs and groups participated in our divisional level consultations which included interactive dialogue sessions with 8 government officials from divisional government officers as well as local government.
The government officials were appointed by senior staff from the office of the relevant Divisional Commissioners and Permanent Secretary level to attend the dialogue programmes.
During the interactive dialogues, which later featured on the community radio broadcasts, priorities ranging from a recommendation for a gender policy for the Northern Development Programme and a more transparent and gender inclusive criteria for the selection of the representatives to district advisory councils were communicated. There was also an opportunity for women to present recommendations for disaster risk management and responses.
The process enables the women to also discuss municipal development priorities including the safety and security as well as environmental concerns.
Additionally, as a result of FemLINKPACIFIC’s Women’s Weather Watch campaign, we were collectively able to influence DISMAC to commence collation of gender as well as age disaggregated data at evacuation centres while also linking members of our rural network from flood affected centres to the Post Floods Review and Analysis of Gender and GBV issues from the perspective of flood prone and flood affected communities being conducted on behalf of UN Women and UNFPA, especially as the findings of the review will assist with upcoming training and capacity building initiatives with key stakeholders.
During June, FemLINKPACIFIC’s monthly consultations convened in Labasa, Nausori, Nadi and Ba, and our interviews carried out in the field, put particular focus on gathering women’s views and issues in relation to the importance of economic growth, whilst ensuring environmental protection, as the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio +20) got underway in Brazil this month.
While we continue to connect women to the wider political process of democratization, our Labasa consultation reiterated that at the micro level women’s priorities are about progressing rural community development, and the enhancement of women’s roles in the prevention of HIV and AIDS.
FemLINKPacific – Fiji Women, Peace and Human Security Report June 2012
Press Release – femLINKPACIFIC
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