Women play important roles in the rural economy as farmers, wage earners, and entrepreneurs. They also take responsibility for the well-being of the members of their families, including food provision and care for children and the elderly.
Yet, women in rural areas face constraints in engaging in economic activities because of gender-based discrimination and social norms, disproportionate involvement in unpaid work, and unequal access to education, healthcare, property, and financial and other services.
Hazylyn Philip of Ward 24, Rukutu village in Marovo constituency made these sentiments when she expressed her joy on behalf of the women of Marovo constituency as one of the Fishery Project recipients.
She was speaking to MRD Media during the Marovo fishery and Gasini market house projects launching event which was held on 28th June, 2022 at Gasini Port, Western Province.
“Firstly, I want to acknowledge our Honourable Member of Parliament (MP) Chachabule Amoi for this fishery project – the boats, engines and eskies.
“I am talking here on behalf of our Marovo constituency women, I am a woman, a mother and a leader in my community.”
In relation to this Fishery Project, “I must tell you the women in Marovo are also good at fishing, some are even better than our men folks.
“This gave me a joyful heart to see our Member of Parliament also support us, women, with regard to this important project.
“Some of our mothers in our communities do a lot of fishing to support their small families. They earn hard cash by selling their catches.
“Thank you government and our MP Hon Chachabule, for seeing it fit to allow women to be part of this great initiative, and also some are recipients of this project, “she expressed.
She added that compared to past leadership in Marovo this is the first and one-of-a-kind project that includes everyone, meaning women and men, youths, voters, and non-voters.
But Ms Philip as a woman community leader has a very important message to the 49 MPs of the current parliament.
“To all the MPs in the current Parliament, women in this country especially in the rural areas most of the time left out in terms of development.
“Our cry is to see that our children and women access quality education, and a good health system to be part of any development activities in the rural areas.
“I just wish our MPs have the same heart as our MP for Marovo has towards the women in our constituency to see the needs of our women folks and address it.
“Women are the backbone of our homes and communities, as leaders, we need to address their needs, and involve them in whatever livelihood projects you have in your constituency or community,” she added.
“So please good MPs our rural women need your support today for better homes, communities, and a peaceful country,” she said.
But Ms Philip was not the only woman expressing her happiness, speaking to the Ministry of Rural Development Media Team, Justina Metu from Gasini also shared her excitement.
“This is the first of its kind to happen in our constituency, especially in terms of projects that would benefit the whole community or people of Marovo.
“I would like to thank the government through our constituency office and our Member of Parliament (MP) Chachabule Amoi for his honest leadership in ensuring such projects that would directly benefit us women in the rural areas is established or recognised.”
She expressed that this will boost the morale of their hardworking mothers and women to improve their livelihood.
While sharing the same sentiments, Erica Henry also acknowledged the government and PRC for the first ever market house.
“We are grateful for this support from our government. This market house will really benefit us women and children because this is where we women spend most of our time selling our market produces to earn income to support our families,” Ms. Hendry expressed.
Marovo constituency office of the Ministry of Rural Development (MRD) implements these projects under its Rural Constituency Development Fund (RCDF) programme initiatives for 2022.
Constituency Development Fund (CDF) programme is funded by the Solomon Islands Government (SIG) and the Peoples Republic of China (PRC) as donor.
Both projects consisting of 160 OBMs, canoes, eskies and the Gasini Market House plus 400 sets of flash toilets for sanitation were co-funded by SIG and the Peoples Republic of China.
MRD is thankful to the Government of the Peoples Republic of China for seeing fit to partner with SIG and deliver these projects directly to the rural people of Solomon Islands.
MRD remains committed to see that all rural Solomon Islanders meaningfully participate in development activities to improve their social and economic livelihoods.
– MRD Press