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First Barefoot College In The North

First Barefoot College In The North
Women of Kioa during their meeting with the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa in Kioa Island in the Northern Division on August 1, 2018. Photo: Nacanieli Tuilevuka
August 02
10:00 2018

The Fiji Barefoot College, which is a solar electrification training centre, has been jointly supported by the Governments of India and Fiji and is the first of its kind in the Pacific.

 

Construction for the first Barefoot College for Women in the Pacific will start soon once plans have been finalised.

The first proposed Barefoot College will be built at Wainikoro, Nadogo in Macuata.

Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa said the government applauded the Indian government for its $2.51 million contribution towards the project and assurance that it would continue to support projects for gender equality.

“This project will replicate Barefoot College in Rajasthan, India and is an investment to the people of the North,” she said.

“The Fiji Barefoot College, which is a solar electrification training centre has been jointly supported by the Government of India and the Government of Fiji and it will be the first of its kind in the Pacific.

“The college will train rural women in solar engineering to solar electrify rural communities.”

Mrs Vuniwaqa said the Tui Nadogo, Ratu Ilisanita Malodali, had swiftly identified the site following the visit of the College founder, Professor Bunker Roy, to the country last year.

She said the school would also champion the fight against climate change, which Fiji as a small island country was facing.

“Let us be resilient, lift up our voices and be an example to the global community by advocating for the use of clean and sustainable technology to mitigate the effects of climate change and improve quality of life within under-developed rural villages in Fiji,” Ms Vuniwaqa said.

“The people of Nadogo have worked closely with Government in the past and experienced good changes.

“They are happy that the Government has not ignored their district and they will continue to work with Government for similar development projects.

“This college will have so much impact in the lives of rural women in Nadogo, in Fiji and in the Pacific and we look forward to its eventuation.”

Edited by Percy Kean.

Feedback: nacanieli.tuilevuka@fijisun.com.fj

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