Thursday, June 17, 2021
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UN Launches Programme On Gender Responsive Peacebuilding In Extractive Industries In Isabel Province, Solomon Islands


Honiara – The UN, through the International
Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations
Population Fund (UNFPA), launched a programme Wednesday on
Gender Responsive Peacebuilding in Extractive Industries in
Isabel Province.

The programme will operate under
three broad outcome areas: creating an enabling environment
to support the human rights of women and the participation
of women in community-based peacebuilding processes;
ensuring women are able to drive change within communities
via peacebuilding dialogues; and coordinating between civil
society organisations and governments to improve the quality
of service provision to women facing violations as a result
of conflict dynamics between communities and extractive
industries.

The launch of the programme in Honiara was
attended by the Honourable Samuel Manetoali, Minister for
Traditional Governance, Peace and Ecclesiastical Affairs;
Mr. Sanaka Samarasinha, UN Resident Coordinator; Mr Pär
Liljert, IOM Chief of Mission and Coordinator for the
Pacific; and Dr. Jennifer Butler, UNFPA Pacific
Director.

Implemented by IOM and UNFPA, the programme
seeks to include women, in communities adjacent to
extractive industries in Isabel Province, in local
peacebuilding processes. Previous IOM programming in the
Solomon Islands and the broader Pacific region has been used
to inform the conceptualization and development of this
programme.

In a speech delivered at the launch event,
Mr. Sanaka Samarasinha, UN Resident Coordinator, outlined
how the programme will empower women in Isabel Province.
“The programme strives to provide women with the enabling
environment, skills and networks to more effectively access
and lead rights-based dispute resolution processes. The
action will work in both informal and formal decision-making
spaces, alongside the justice system, so as to
systematically include women in local peacebuilding
processes,” said Mr Samarasinha.

As is the case
across the world, women in the Solomon Islands have
previously been disenfranchised in local peacebuilding
processes by gendered social norms and power structures. The
programme launched today seeks to enhance gender equity and
the empowerment of women in these processes, and builds on
the UN’s previous work in the region, in this critically
important
field.

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