Strengthening capacity for disaster resilience of rural women in Fiji

Iftekhar Ahmed

This paper is derived from an action research project in Fiji that centered on a “Training of Trainers” (ToT) approach concerned with strengthening the capacity of rural women for disaster resilience. The island nation faces great disaster risk and communities in remote and rural areas are particularly vulnerable. Women there play an important community role and hence can provide leadership for disaster resilience, but there is a need to strengthen their capacity so that their role can be more effective. Through engagement and consultations with local stakeholders, the project team developed a ToT package and assisted in its delivery. The project was initiated with a planning workshop in the capital city, Suva, followed by ToT for staff members from relevant organizations in another city, Nadi. From this ToT a team comprised of policewomen trainers were selected to run a training program in a village called Naboutini, with support from the project team. The rural participants assessed the training positively and expressed a strong interest in such training for the future. Pathways for future research that became evident included exploration of the long-term impacts of such initiatives, ways of assuring quality, and importantly, how such initiatives could be sustained through ownership of the community.

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Book Chapter
Submitted by Jennifer Danfprd
May 19, 2023
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