Skip to main content

35+ years of activism & feminism in Fiji

Published

30 July 2020

Author

Fiji Women's Rights Movement

Themes

Press Release: Young women focus of national learning exchange event 30/07/2020

Young women focus of national learning exchange event

30/07/2020

 The Fiji Women’s Rights Movement has organised a three-day national learning exchange in Suva, focused on reflecting and thinking beyond COVID-19.

The event which begins today and ends on Saturday August 1 is an avenue to create a space for 20 young women to learn and exchange advocacy strategies of coping through the pandemic and ways to think beyond in times of crisis.

The participants are representatives from the Fiji National University and Fiji Association of the Deaf in the western, northern and central divisions who were part of divisional dialogues organised between April and July as a response to the recent FWRM Rapid Assessment on the impact of COVID-19 on young women and girls in Fiji.

The national learning exchange event is organised by FWRM in partnership with FNU supported by The Fiji Women’s Fund, an initiative of the Australian Government’s Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development.

FWRM Executive Director Nalini Singh said the pandemic further exacerbated the discrimination of young women and girls in our communities, already a maginalised group and whose voices were often overlooked.

Ms Singh said a key finding from the FWRM Rapid Assessment reported that 71 percent of the young women and girls surveyed were expected to do more household work than their male family members amidst lockdown.

The Assessment also found that 65 percent of the respondents studying at universities highlighted challenges with juggling online studies and unpaid care work during the lockdown.

“Young women and girls face multiple discrimination against their gender and age thus spaces such as this is crucial to sharing their perspectives and addressing the threats to their safety and security,” Ms Singh said.

The Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Mereseini Vuniwaqa said whilst the pandemic does not discriminate, society does, as the age and gender implications of a global pandemic are stark.

“Recognising the extent to which a pandemic could affect individuals differently is a fundamental step for creating effective, equitable policies and response interventions,” the Minister said.

“The benefits of gender equality are not just for women and girls, but for everyone whose lives will be changed by a fairer world that leaves no one behind.”

FNU Registrar Sarita Devi said the convention was an important space for the participants to share learnings and coping mechanisms post COVID 19.

“We are appreciative of the avenue for these young women to come together and unpack their experiences and realities, particularly with the impact of the pandemic (COVID 19) and how it has changed aspects of their livelihoods and collectively strategise,” Ms Devi said.

The event marks the completion of the partnership between FWRM and FNU however the young women participants will continue to engage at various advocacy platforms through the FWRM Young Feminist Network.

Ends

 

For more information please contact FWRM Communications on 8677330 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.