Tagolyn Kabekabe, Anglican Alliance Facilitator for the Pacific, is taking part in the second Pacific Islands Women in Leadership programme, which has been designed to create a vibrant network of women leaders across the Pacific region.
The programme is encouraging the network of women to learn from each other and provide mutual support as they seek to bring about positive change in their island societies.
Outcomes from the programme include the development of a network of women leaders working on Pacific women’s empowerment issues who are connected to supportive institutions, as well as the development of applied leadership projects designed within and for specific communities.
Currently at the East-West Center in Hawaii, Tagolyn has been taking part in extensive project development training and mentorship. She will receive follow-up support after the on-campus portion of the programme, and has the opportunity to access small seed grants for selected projects.
The seed funding will assist participants in leveraging their past experiences, current goals and project design to develop additional funding sources or revenue model. Particular emphasis will be placed on social entrepreneurship as a design framework.
Tagolyn is designing a project which will be rolled out through the Mothers’ Union in the Pacific, tackling gender based violence. Tagolyn said,
“When I was first accepted onto the programme, I had a number of discussions with the former Provincial Mothers’ Union president on what the best possible project would be; both in line with the objectives of the Mothers’ Union and something that could be integrated into exisiting activities, with existing funding. The issue of gender based violence continues to be a priority for the Anglican Church of Melanesia and the Mothers’ Union to address, particularly in rural grassroots communities.”
Tagolyn has called the project ‘From the Kitchen to the Verandah’. She said, “This tells a story of its own when talking about gender in our Pacific communities. Women in patriarchal societies do not have a say in what goes on in their homes or in the community, and are destined to the kitchen. This project will have an equal number of men and women – the basic aim is to raise the voice of women, which will take women out of the kitchen and up to the verandah, sitting with and next to the men.”
The project will be replicated throughout the nine dioceses of the Anglican Church of Melanesia.