Vanuatu Women's Centre

Phone: (678) 25764 | 24 Hours Toll-Freeline:161

The workshop was held for a week from 4th – 8th July 2022, with 17 participants from 8 different villages; VWC had invited and catered for 25 participants but only 17 attended, due to very bad road conditions and weather. The workshop was hosted at Saratamata in East Ambae.

There was good support from the Area Secretary of North Ambae who opened the workshop. The facilitators were the Community Educator and CAVAW Officer, assisted by PECC Project Officer.

After the introductions, purpose of the workshop and ground rules, day 1 focused on gender, explaining and giving examples on the topic, and involving a lot of group activity which helped the participants clearly understand gender, sex, discrimination, stereotypes and gender equality.

Day 2 focused on domestic violence, and violence against women, providing opportunities through group activities for participants to identify different issues happening in their community, and share life experiences. Questions and discussion in the plenary and in small groups helped participants to understand the topic well, and the different forms of violence against women.

Day 3 focused on sexual violence, with 3 different group activities for participants, relating different offences to the Vanuatu Penal Code and Family Protection Act. Most participants shed tears and emphasised that this is really an issue in their community. The afternoon session was devoted to the Family Protection Act, with many questions and much discussion related to specific aspects of the law so that participants could really understand it.

Day 4 focused on human rights, and again involved doing a group activity. VWC services and history was also explained, along with the management of CAVAWs.

Participants were given time to elect the new CAVAW committee and 3 members were elected from 3 different communities of North Ambae. In her assessment of the workshop, the CAVAW Officer said: “participants were keen to take in the new information, and people from the community also came to take in information about the issues and VWC services”.

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