The watchdog of women’s rights in Solomon Islands

Ethel Falu Sigimanu has been instrumental in advancing gender equality and women’s human rights in the Solomon Islands. She is one of the longest-serving permanent secretaries in the Solomon Islands government, having spent the past 10 years with the Ministry of Women, Youth, Children and Family Affairs. During this time, she has taken leadership and has been influential in the work towards the passage of … Continue reading The watchdog of women’s rights in Solomon Islands

The midwife who became the fist woman in government in Wallis and Futuna

Esitele Fuluhea Lakalaka knows firsthand the struggles of women in her native Wallis and Futuna. She began her career at a young age in the late 60s in the French territory’s health sector, firstly as a secretary and interpreter, then as a midwife delivering births at Sia Hospital, then finally as an management executive at the hospital. Ms Lakalaka then became interested in public affairs … Continue reading The midwife who became the fist woman in government in Wallis and Futuna

Patricia Imrana Jalal, lawyer and gender advocate

Patricia Imrana Jalal is a Fijian lawyer and gender advocate, who served as a Human Rights Commissioner on the Fiji Human Rights Commission, as a Fiji Law Reform Commissioner,  and as Human Rights Advisor to the Pacific Regional Rights Resource Team (RRRT) and the United Nations Development Program. She is a Commissioner on the Geneva-based International Commission of Jurists, to which she was elected in … Continue reading Patricia Imrana Jalal, lawyer and gender advocate

Mrs Afamasaga, influential teacher from Samoa

Seventy-year-old Gatoloai Tili Afamasaga has played an instrumental role in the education sector in her native Samoa for over 40 years. Ms Afamasaga started her career as a teacher, then went on to become a teacher trainer. In 1984, she was appointed Principal of Western Samoa Teachers College, a position she held for thirteen years. When the college merged with the National University of Samoa … Continue reading Mrs Afamasaga, influential teacher from Samoa

The first Kanak woman to take up law in New Caledonia

Nadine Pidjot made history this May when she became the first Kanak woman to take up law in New Caledonia. Following a successful career as a public servant for the Government of New Caledonia, the French High Commission in New Caledonia, and the French Embassy in Australia, she successfully created her own consulting company and is highly regarded among both Kanak and non-Kanak communities. During … Continue reading The first Kanak woman to take up law in New Caledonia

“It is time for the church to speak out against the injustices in society”

Reverend Sereima Lomaloma is an advocate for gender equality and the elimination of violence against women and children in Fiji and the Pacific, advocating through the Anglican church, House of Sarah and and other faith-based organisations since the early 2000s. For this portrait, she told the SPC that “It’s time for the church to also speak out against the injustices in society, violence in all … Continue reading “It is time for the church to speak out against the injustices in society”

She created a line of women products for rural communities in Vanuatu

Mary is the coordinator and a founding member of Mamma’s Laef, a social enterprise run by six ni-Vanuatu women in Port Vila. Mamma’s Laef sew washable sanitary pads that they distribute to communities across Vanuatu, where women often do not have access to menstrual hygiene management products, instead using old cloth or other unreliable and unhygienic substitutes and missing days of work and school as … Continue reading She created a line of women products for rural communities in Vanuatu

This journalist created a trans-Pacific women-media organisation

Sharon Bhagwan Rolls is a second-generation Fijian women’s rights advocate working at the intersection of gender and media. Following a successful high-profile career as a radio and television producer and presenter in Fiji, she helped establish femLINKpacific in 2000 as a regional women-led media organisation that advocates for Pacific women as decision makers in the long-term transformation of their respective island countries. In 2004, femLINK … Continue reading This journalist created a trans-Pacific women-media organisation

This LGBT, feminism and human rights activist from Fiji is a legend for young social fighters

Fijian human rights activist Noelene Nabulivou is a determined voice of disenfranchised women and people. As a brave, openly lesbian Pacific woman in a region where the LGBTI+ community continues to face discrimination, she works for justice for all Pacific islanders. Noelene is known for the political care, sharpness and passion of her work. “I love being a Pacific islander. We are funny, fierce and … Continue reading This LGBT, feminism and human rights activist from Fiji is a legend for young social fighters

A businesswoman in Vanuatu

Ni-Vanuatu businesswoman Rosemary Leona is living proof that Pacific women can stake a claim in the region’s male-dominated business scene. The fifty-four-year-old native of Pentecost Island has made a name for herself in two of Vanuatu’s key industries: tourism and kava. She is the proud owner of the recently launched Vila Rose Hotel in the heart of Port Vila. Rosemary has also run a successful … Continue reading A businesswoman in Vanuatu