GENDER ACTION PLAN (GAP) FOR MINISTRY DISCUSSED

The Ministry of Forestry in partnership with REDD+ Fiji conducted a workshop on Gender Action Plan (GAP) at Holiday Inn in Suva.

The Gender Action Plan, which aims to increase the participation of women in all UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) processes, seeks to increase awareness of and support for the development and effective implementation of gender-responsive climate policy at the regional, national and local levels.

Closing the consultation, Ministry of Forestry permanent secretary Mr. Pene Baleinabuli, in light of GAP, spoke about female representation in the Ministry.

“Thirty (30) years ago, there were hardly any female in the Ministry. Now we are almost reaching over 30 percent of female working in the technical and scientific field of the Ministry. This is a very good move. It’s a move that we want to support,” he said

“We also want to make sure that Forestry is also an organization of choice, for young people in Fiji simply because we believe they could be our best advocate for the type of work that we want to do in Forestry, that it is not just about producing timber, or timber needs, but it is everything to do with life, it’s about the environment and climate change and it’s about our livelihood as well,” he added.

Mr Baleinabuli believes that these type of workshops are important and should be carried out in all workplaces.

“This type of workshop is fundamental and we need to put it in place because it is dealing with gender issues. I would strongly suggest that whilst we can gather all the knowledge, the experiences from other countries, we must be able to align all that to the national direction that Fiji is taking. Fiji is becoming a very modern, progressive and inclusive nation, it has documented the way it wants to move forward,” he said.

The GAP workshop was attended by representative from the World Bank, TEBTEBBA study on gender and the member of the Media.

REDD+ Fiji (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation and the role of conservation, sustainable management of forest and forest carbon stock enhancement) is a United Nation collaborative Programme on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in developing countries.

TEBTEBBA is an indigenous peoples’ institution which focuses on helping enhance indigenous peoples’ capacities to assert and claim their rights.