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2ND PFF WORKING GROUP

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The Forum mobilised diverse women from across the Pacific to share knowledge and experiences, celebrate achievements and strategise for collective action to achieve women’s human rights.

It was a transformative space for Pacific feminists to reflect on key issues paramount to gender equality and women’s human rights and come together with strong, focused and accelerated strategies.

With the rise of conservative influence and ideologies, women human rights defenders are more at threat and it’s important now more than ever to amplify our issues. The Pacific Feminist Forum continues to be a platform for fostering diversity, connection and intergenerational leadership within Pacific feminist movements at the national and regional level.

The 2nd PFF was supported by the Australian Government through the We Rise Coalition, Fiji Women’s Fund, Mama Cash and the UN Women Fiji Multi-Country Office.

2ND PFF Opening Address: Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Honorable MereseiniVuniwaqa

Fiji’s Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Mereseini Vuniawaqa was the chief guest at the opening of the Pacific Feminist Forum 2019. The Minister delivered her address to more than 150 women representatives from within the Pacific region at the Pearl Resort, Pacific Harbour and officially opened the 3-day forum.

Genesis – is a poem written by Camari Serau who was commissioned by the PFF Working Group to create literature for the opening of the 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum.

2ND PFF Key Address: Joelene Mataele, Tongan Leitis Association

Joelene Mataele of the Tongan Leitis Association delivered the keynote speech at the opening of the 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum to welcome the participants and guests to the 3-day forum.

Joelene is also part of the Working Group for PFF 2 and the former Chairperson for the Pacific Sexual Gender Diversity Network.

Action plan that was an outcome from the 2019 Forum

Pacific Feminists Commit to Action Plan for Change

22/05/19

Pacific feminists celebrated and reaffirmed their commitment towards sustaining solidarity, strengthening resistance and revolution for gender equality, human rights and justice at the closing of the 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum (PFF).

Over 150 women human rights defenders and grassroots activists from across the region convened for the 2nd PFF, which was held, from May 20-22 at the Pearl Resort in Pacific Harbour.

The three-day forum was organised by the PFF working group that consists of femLINKPacific, Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM), Diverse Voices and Action (DIVA) for Equality Fiji, Tongan Leitis Association and Rise UP (PNG). The 2nd PFF is supported by the Australian Government through the We Rise Coalition, Fiji Women’s Fund, Mama Cash and the UN Women Fiji Multi-Country Office.

“It was an empowering and inspiring 3 days at the 2nd PFF to share our insights, challenges, emotions and stories from Fiji and the Pacific and documenting these to amplify and ensure visibility for all the work we are doing, as well as, having a collective voice to push for positive social change,” said femLINKPacific Executive Director Susan Grey.

The inaugural PFF in 2016 produced the Pacific Feminist Charter for Change, which sets out the collective principles that are key to the work of Pacific Feminists. At the culmination of the 2nd PFF, the participants rallied to map out an action plan and recommit to the Pacific Feminist Charter for Change.

“The call to action is based on the Pacific Feminist Forum Charter. This is an important follow-up step to turn a groundbreaking feminist document into a practical plan that can be carried out by diverse feminists in the 2nd PFF. It’s been a creative, exciting, substantive space to move forward, the feminist movement in the Pacific,” said Noelene Nabulivou of DIVA for Equality Fiji.

“The 2nd PFF celebrated the diversity of the Pacific feminist movement and provided an important space to reflect on the achievements, progress and challenges in our work. It has been 3 years since the Pacific Feminist Charter for Change came into being and the commitment towards these principles remain strong,” said FWRM Executive Director Nalini Singh.

The 2nd PFF included participants from over 14 countries across the region including Fiji, Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Federated States of Micronesia, West Papua, New Caledonia, French Polynesia, Samoa, New Zealand and Australia.

“It has been another momentous achievement for Pacific women human rights defenders’ to come together and create a space that is safe and enriching for strengthening our movement. The PFF will continue to be a platform for fostering diversity, connection and intergenerational leadership within Pacific feminist movements at the national and regional level and we look forward to another amazing convening in 2021,” said Ms. Singh.

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Building solidarity: 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum UnderwayBuilding solidarity: 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum Underway

20/05/19

Women’s human rights in the Pacific and globally are under threat and now more than ever, women human rights defenders and activists need to build solidarity, strengthen resistance and lead the revolution against all forms of discrimination and injustices that hinder progress towards gender equality.

This was the rallying cry of over 150 Pacific women human rights defenders at the opening session of the 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum (PFF), which is underway at the Pearl Resort in Pacific Harbour.

The three-day forum was organised by the PFF working group that consists of femLINKPacific, Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM), Diverse Voices and Action (DIVA) for Equality Fiji, Tongan Leitis Association and Rise UP (PNG). The 2nd PFF is supported by the Australian Government through the We Rise Coalition, Fiji Women’s Fund, Mama Cash and the UN Women Fiji Multi-Country Office.

“We need to do better to uplift all diversities of women in our beloved Oceania region, I reflect in practice because I believe in solidarity and I believe we are stronger as a movement when we back each other up and when we uplift one another collectively,” said PFF working group member and Tongan Leitis Association Co-founder Joeleen Brown Mataele, who was the keynote speaker at the event.

“Historically and never before we have seen the rise in attacks and murders of women human rights defenders, it is appalling and it is scary! Here in the Pacific we must keep the spotlight on protection of all our defenders,” she added.

Chief Guest at the event was Fiji Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Hon. Mereseini Vuniwaqa who gave the welcoming address.

“This Forum is truly a celebration, a celebration of the contributions that the women Pacific Islanders make in every aspect of life: in the home, on the job, in the community, as feminists, mothers, sisters, daughters, farmers, market vendors, students, workers, citizens and leaders.”

The PFF included participants from over 14 countries across the region including Fiji, Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Federated States of Micronesia, West Papua, New Caledonia, French Polynesia, Samoa, New Zealand and Australia. This is the second regional convening of it’s kind following the inaugural PFF in 2016 that produced the Pacific Feminist Charter for Change, which sets out the collective principles that are key to the work of Pacific Feminists.

Within the next 3 days, the PFF participants will be reaffirming their commitment to the principles enshrined in the Charter. The platform provided at the PFF is about recognising their collective struggles, achievements and strategising on challenges. Various parallel sessions will also provide a platform for these women human rights defenders to strategise and share their experiences and solutions.

The PFF continues to be a platform for fostering diversity, connection and intergenerational leadership within Pacific feminist movements at the national and regional level.

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Build up begins for the 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum

22/03/2019

The 2nd Pacific Feminist Forum (PFF) is set to take place from May 20 to 22 at the Pearl Resort in Pacific Harbour.

With the theme, “Sustaining Solidarity, Resistance and Revolution,” the event is expected to convene over 100 women human rights defenders from across the Pacific region. The second PFF is organised by a regional working group which includes Tonga Leitis Association Joeleen Mataele, Rise Up Tamara Kruzang, Diverse Voices and Action (DIVA) for Equality Fiji Noelene Nabulivou and Viva Tatawaqa, Fiji Women’s Right Movement (FWRM) Nalini Singh and Maraia Tabunakawai and FemLINK Pacific Susan Grey.

As Pacific feminists we need to come together with strong, focused and accelerated strategies as people are suffering, inequalities are growing, 200 species a day going extinct is the new normal. We come together in numbers and strength to show the seriousness and urgency of our work, and that just futures require localised feminist strategies.

The inaugural PFF took place in 2016 and brought together over 100 women human rights defenders from 16 Pacific island countries. An important outcome from this first gathering was the Pacific Feminist Charter for Change 2016 (PFF Charter), a living document that enshrined the collective principles and work of Pacific feminists.

The inaugural PFF was a milestone moment for the Pacific women’s human rights movement to have a space to mobilise and engage on our issues within our regional contexts. It was an opportunity to build relationships and strengthen solidarity to map out our shared vision and goals.

Now 3 years later, it’s time to relook at the PFF Charter and reflect on how to build on from what we’ve achieved and the remaining issues we still face.

It’s a dangerous time for women human rights defenders in the Pacific and around the world, with the global politics and environment being the way it is. With the rise of conservative influence and ideologies, women human rights defenders are more at threat and it’s important now more than ever to amplify our issues.

It’s important for us to strategise on how we deal with these changing landscapes and how to ensure that the most marginalised voices in our communities are still heard. This is another important priority for PFF, to mobilise and support the engagement of rural women and women working at the grass-roots communities.

The 3-day forum will consist of a series of workshops aligned to the theme, plenaries open to the public and closed plenaries exclusively for PFF participants, information booths and market set-ups.

The 2nd PFF working group is currently receiving participants applications until closing deadline on Monday, 25 March 2019. Workshop proposal applications will be available soon.

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