Our partner in Solomon Islands is the Anglican Church of Melanesia. We work through their Mothers’ Union, and the Anglican Sisters of the Melanesian Church.

The Pacific nation of Solomon Islands faces many challenges. Ranked 152 out of 189 nations on the UN’s Human Development Index, about 13 per cent of its 611,000 people live below the poverty line.

The Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade says that the Solomon Islands is one of the most aid dependent countries in the world and lags behind other Pacific countries on most development indicators.

More than 80 percent of the population lives in rural areas scattered across multiple, remote islands, which makes communications, transport and delivery of basic health and education services extremely challenging. Most of the population has limited access to health, education and water and sanitation services.

Opportunities for unskilled labourers to find ongoing and meaningful work, particularly in the outlying islands, are extremely limited, especially for women. Unemployment is high, and only 15 per cent of school leavers find paid jobs.

Gender inequality and violence against women and children is a serious issue. More than 63 percent of women and girls have experienced violence at the hand of an intimate partner or family member. The problem is exacerbated by high unemployment, drug and alcohol abuse and lack of institutional support.

We are working with the Anglican Church of Melanesia (ACOM), including the Mothers’ Union, on the Safe, Strong Communities: Gender and Climate Justice in the Solomon Islands project.

The project has two specific aims. They are to:

  • Strengthen the capacity of women leaders of the Mothers’ Union to advocate for climate and gender justice through participation and influence in decisions on climate change and disasters that affect the future of their communities.
  • Enable women accessing the Christian Care Centre women’s refuge to improve their financial behaviour, enhancing their ability to meet social and economic needs.

This is being achieved by forming a Mothers’ Union advocacy taskforce in Guadalcanal and Malaita provinces. The taskforce will run workshops on identifying topics relating to climate and gender justice. The project will ensure that people living with disability are included in project activities.

Staff at the Christian Care Centre (CCC) will allow clients to access opportunities to ensure they are included in financial decision-making and have an increased understanding of financial literacy.

We also support the work of the Anglican Sisters of the Melanesian Church, who run the Christian Care Centre, one of only a few women’s refuges in Solomon Islands. Their work includes supporting women who have been affected by violence, and raising awareness about the issue. We have worked with the Anglican Sisters since 1992.

Funding: AOA acknowledges the support of the Australian Government through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP), which together with donations from the Australian public funds this program.

Every donation you make to this project will be combined with funding from the Australian Government to reach more people. We have committed to contribute $1 for every $5 we receive from the Australian Government. Your donation will allow us to extend our programs.

If you would like to donate to our work in Solomon Islands, click on the ‘Please Donate’ button (choose ‘Solomon Islands – Safe Communities’ from the ‘Donation’ drop-down menu):