YWLP

YOUNG WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP PROGRAM

There are four main components of the Young Women in Leadership Program:

1. GIRLS Program
2. Emerging Leaders Forum and Alumni
3. Fiji Young Women’s Forum
4. Regional Training and Networking

FWRM believes that a cornerstone of young women’s leadership is inter-generational learning. By facilitating opportunities where women leaders share their knowledge and skills with young women, FWRM contributes to a vibrant alliance of women leaders throughout Fiji and the region.

With some of the lowest rates of female parliamentary participation in the world, the Pacific needs programs such as this.

CAMPAIGN OBJECTIVES

The program involves working closely with young women and girls in developing their leadership and advocacy skills at the national, regional and international foras through capacity-building workshops; design, production and dissemination of information educational and communication materials and facilitating the inclusion of young Pacific women at policy making forums.

FWRM works with a diversity of young women (including young trans-women, young women with disabilities) and girls (10-12 years) to mobilize a critical mass of such marginalized communities to tackle women’s issues at all levels of political and social activity.

HOW THE OBJECTIVES WERE ACHIEVED

Through the four programmes as follows:

1. Currently, the GIRLS programme is using theatre arts and digital storytelling as a platform to provide a safe and healthy avenue to raise issues against gender stereotypes, bullying and sexism.

2. Currently YWLP is the secretariat of the Pacific Young Women Leadership Alliance. The PYWLA is composed of regional and UN organizations, including: the Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (current secretariat), Commonwealth Youth Programme, FemLink Pacific, International Planned Parenthood Federation, Pacific Youth Council, Secretariat of the Pacific Community, YWCA, UNFPA, UNWOMEN and UNICEF.

3. The YWLP has hosted the ELF programme since 2004 and has seen a total of 84 women graduating from the programme and becoming part of the Emerging Forum Alumni (ELFA).

4. The YWLP has provided a Secretariat role that strives to facilitate constructive alliances between young women-led organizations.

CAMPAIGN INNOVATIONS

Since 2003, FWRM has worked with young women and girls in Fiji aged 10 – 25 years and supported the development of similar programmes in the Pacific. These include women’s organizations such as the Young Christian Women’s Association (YWCA) in the Solomon Islands, Kup Women for Peace in Papua New Guinea and Tonga’s Women for Action.

CAMPAIGN IMPACT

FWRM works with a diversity of young women (including young trans-women, young women with disabilities) and girls (10-12 years) to mobilize a critical mass of such marginalized communities to tackle women’s issues at all levels of political and social activity.

CHALLENGES FACED

The strength of the patrilineal culture of the Pacific makes it very hard to discuss topics such as this.

LESSONS LEARNT

In the 10-year herstory of the ELF, FWRM has learnt that one of the key success of the programme is that the Movement has continued to offer ongoing support for the ELF graduates to remain connected to each other as well as support for them to carry out their own advocacy and activities as a young women’s collective.