It’s International Women’s Day, and this year’s theme is #BeBoldForChange.
In the words of the international organisers:
‘Each one of us – with women, men and non-binary people joining forces – can be a leader within our own spheres of influence by taking bold pragmatic action to accelerate gender parity. Through purposeful collaboration, we can help women advance and unleash the limitless potential offered to economies the world over.’
Today ABV, together with our partner, the Australia-Pacific Technical College, is excited to announce a bold and pragmatic action to accelerate gender parity: The Certificate IV in New Small Business (BSB42615) will be offered to Fijian women who own or manage their own small business.
Gender inequality is one of the key development issues facing Fiji, ranking 87th in the UNDP Gender Inequality Index.
Starting in April, and delivered over a 9 month period, the program will be tuition-free to successful candidates. Students will attend a series of monthly workshops at APTC, with Australian business volunteers providing mentoring support between the workshops to assist students to implement the learning and support students to overcome the challenges they face in their businesses. Through the combination of workshop learning and mentoring support, the women will gain skills to grow and expand their businesses.
According to the Washington-based International Center for Research on Women: “Women’s economic empowerment – that is, their capacity to bring about economic change for themselves – is increasingly viewed as the most important contributing factor to achieving equality between women and men.”
APTC is an innovative development project funded by the Australian Government, delivering internationally-recognised Australian skills and qualifications for a wide range of vocational careers for skilled workers across the Pacific.
For ABV and APTC this program will, in a small but meaningful way, assist in the economic empowerment of Fijian women, while also contributing to the alleviation of poverty in the country as a whole.
Happy International Women’s Day!