NATION

Women’s Empowerment Allocation Up Threefold

  The budgetary allocation for women’s empowerment has increased approximately threefold over the past decade. This was highlighted by Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa while officiating
29 Sep 2018 13:25
Women’s Empowerment Allocation Up Threefold
Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa (sitting second from left) with graduates of the Almanah Hope Centre – Women’s’ Empowerment Training graduation ceremony in Lautoka on September 28, 2018. Photo: DEPTFO NEWS

 

The budgetary allocation for women’s empowerment has increased approximately threefold over the past decade.

This was highlighted by Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa while officiating as chief guest at the Almanah Hope Centre – Women’s’ Empowerment Training graduation ceremony yesterday.

Ms Vuniwaqa said the Government was fully committed towards implementing policies that were for the benefit of each and every woman.

“This has enabled our ministry to successfully pledge support to women’s institutions such as the Makoi Vocational Training Centre in the past and Lifebread Stay Connected (Fiji), Homes of Hope and Ba Women’s Forum for their administration and development this fiscal year,” she said.

Ms Vuniwaqa said support for Almanah Hope Centre was initiated by the fact the centre allowed for developmental opportunities for underprivileged and disadvantaged women.

This included widows, single mothers, women with little or no formal education, women from broken families and women from all cultural and religious backgrounds.

Ms Vuniwaqa said women in the rural areas tend to have limited access to training and financial services.

However, she said, the greatest misconception was that people only saw formal education as a means of driving economic opportunities.

She added that non-formal education was also a driver of economic activities in a country.

Ms Vuniwaqa said that allowing for gender equality would be the major way forward for the country.

“Greater gender equality means a country is associated with better education and health, higher per capita income, faster and more inclusive economic growth, and greater international competitiveness,” she said.

Ms Vuniwaqa added that a report by the United Nations showed that there were four overarching factors that impeded gender equality in all forms of work and at all levels of development.

“This includes adverse social norms, discriminatory laws and insufficient legal protection, gender gaps in unpaid household and care work and unequal access to digital, financial and property assets,” she said.

“It is, therefore, time to address adverse stereotypes and implicit biases in our society and also to implement women friendly policies and projects to promote greater economic participation of women in national development.”

The Director of Almanah Hope Centre, Raymond Moti said 10 women graduated yesterday.

“It was a five-month training session, which included empowerment training, training skills and income-generating ideas,” said Mr Moti.

He said the graduating women were mostly from the Lautoka to Ba corridor—most of whom came from disadvantaged situations.

Mr Moti said a similar training session was scheduled for February next year.

Edited by Epineri Vula

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