Come the 8th March 2018, the world will once again come together to celebrate the International Women’s Day. On the theme ‘Press for Progress’ to accelerate gender parity as a global momentum, Samoa Victim Support Group is positioning itself accordingly through its various programs.
We have the Tina Faufautua Program which provides counseling rehabilitation for women offenders of violence referred from the Family Court. This is SVSG making progress in addressing family violence in Samoa. While statistics on case referrals from the Courts to SVSG in 2017, recorded 33% being women compared to 67% of men, SVSG’s program for both men and women takes holistic approach in addressing family violence. The families, village and church leaders of the reformed offenders attested on the behavioral changes in the lives of these mothers following the counseling rehabilitation.
The press for progress in the economic empowerment of women saw one of the most vulnerable groups of women in Samoa, the unemployed nofotane, being trained on livelihood skills for income generation and self-employment.
From July 2017 to February 2018, Samoa Victim Support Group (SVSG) has been providing livelihood training workshops for over 2,000 unemployed nofotane women as part of its economic empowerment program with UN Women Fund for Gender Equality.
From these 2,000+ trained nofotane women, 400 have started small businesses and have earned an income from the skills being trained on. Some of the nofotane products such as beauty accessories were showcased recently by the models during the MaugaLui fashion house show. The nofotane women are therefore making positive gains day by day towards gender parity.
At the Campus of Hope, the young girls who are survivors of sexual abuse have made press for progress in their rehabilitation programs, thanks to the Star Foundation and the ‘With and For Girls’ Award won by SVSG in 2016.
“So while the International Women’s Day is not country, group or organisation specific, SVSG is glad that it has contributed to accelerating gender parity in Samoa. Collectively, let's all Press for Progress.” Siliniu Lina Chang, SVSG President
President of SVSG Samoa