Sunday, July 28, 2013

Lona from Mbokonavera 4

Todays story is about Lona Lapo from Mbokonavera 4. Lona completed Sistas Savve training in August last year.

After completing Sistas Savve training, Sistas Savve helped arrange for Lona to undergo the Youth at Work internship programme run by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC). Through this programme, Lona became an intern at the Provincial Press, a printing company that produces newspapers, books and other printed papers. Following the internship, Lona was offered full time employment at the press. She has now been working there for one year.

Lona Lapo of Mbokonavera 4

Lona believes that the business skills that she developed from Sistas Savve were central to helping her improve her life. These skills are particularly useful for her now that she is working and earning an income:

The part of training that really improved my life was the business training – how to run a small business, budgeting with money. This really changed my life. Now that I have a job, I know how to manage the money that I make.
Before, I had no idea how to manage money, how to pay for things, get things. But since I came and joined Sistas Savve, this business course helped me.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Hem wanfala change wea hem no save forgetem

Over the next few weeks, we will be posting some of the success stories of some of the women who have gone through Sistas Savve training. 

Today, we will share the story of Nancy Metuo.

Nancy Metuo of White River

Nancy Metuo, aged 36, is a single mother of two children, from White River community. She completed Sistas Savve training in November 2012.

Through Sistas Savve training, Nancy developed a successful business making and selling paper bead jewellery, with fellow Sistas Savve participant, Joycelyn Lapi. The paper beads are made out of recycled paper and fashioned into colourful necklaces, earrings, and bracelets. These paper beads have become a significant part of Nancy’s life:
Making paper beads is the main thing that I do. Anytime I’m free, I sit down and make paper beads. I go to the park and sell my paper beads and anytime Solomon Island Women in Business Association (SIWIBA) organises the Mere’s Market, then I go … Also, some people order them from me so I make them for them.

Nancy has financially benefited through her paper bead jewellery business. She does not need to rely on other people for money anymore:
This time, I’ve sold many necklaces. I take the money that I earn through selling these necklaces and help pay for the different needs of my girl. Suppose I didn't earn this money, I don’t know what I would have done. Sistas Savve has really helped me. The training helped me to know how to market and how to gain an income for myself.

In addition to the income generated through her jewellery business, the Sistas Savve training helped Nancy to develop her confidence:
Another thing that Sistas Savve helped me with was to have the confidence to talk in front of people. Before I joined Sistas Savve, I wasn’t sure how to stand up and talk in front of people. I was too shy. But now, I’m confident.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Hello Masu

Masu Atkin, SS Community Liaison Officer

This is Masu Atkin - the Community Liaison Officer for Sistas Savve. Masu joined the Sistas Savve team in December last year. 

Masu works closely with the different communities of women that take part in Sistas Savve. She is involved with the applications of new communities to join the training, monitoring and evaluation and helps to make sure that the training runs smoothly. 

Masu enjoys working at Sistas Savve because she gets to meet and work with lots of different women. She also likes to explore communities that she hasn't visited before:
I like that I don’t stay at one place. I get to go into different communities and get to know about different people and different places.
 Before  Sistas Savve, Masu was a volunteer at the Solomon Island Planned Parenthood Association (SIPPA). She was involved in a Sexual and Reproductive advocacy programme in schools, churches and community groups. She also worked at the Ministry of Women, Youth and Children Affairs in the Youth Congress.

Outside of work, Masu likes to sing and enjoys sharing stories with her friends. 

Monday, May 27, 2013

Gud Tumas!

On the very first day of Ngalita’tae Sistas Savve training, we asked the women what practical skills they were interested in learning. As a group, they made a big list and selected a few skills which they suggested were a priority for their community. In the weeks since, we have brought in different specialists in the afternoon sessions to show and teach the women these skills.

So far, the women have learnt to arrange flowers, bake muffins and cakes, dye and print lavalava and make food covers.

One of my most unforgettable moments at Sistas Savve occurred during a baking session. Most of the women had never baked a cake before – they were so eager to learn.

These afternoon sessions are great. The women are empowered by learning some new skills that they can use in their homes and communities once they have finished the training. They can also use their new skills to make some money for their families.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Helti KaiKai

This week the Sistas Savve women from Ngalita’tae are focusing on food and nutrition. Yesterday, the women discussed a range of topics to help them change their food practices so that they can keep themselves and their families healthy:

-          Balancing and healthy food portions

-          Food groups

-          Which foods are healthy and unhealthy at the shops?

-          How to prevent and treat Vitamin A deficiency

-          How to prevent and treat iron deficiency

-          What causes and prevents malnutrition?

-          How much fat and sugar are found in every day food?

In the afternoon, Humphrey shared his world famous cucumber juice recipe with the women. Mmm delicious!


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

National Women’s Day 2013

Sistas Savve celebrated National Women’s Day yesterday. The day was celebrated by a march down the main road with many government and non-government groups followed by a program at the National Museum. The theme of the day was, ‘The Gender Agenda: Gaining Momentum’. The Solomon Island Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) report was launched at the event.

Here are some pictures from the day:

Doris Dakei (SS coordinator), Angela Lomasia (YWCA program's officer), Rose Burns (YWCA program & evaluation coordinator),  Masu ( SS community liaison officer)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Leadership, Gender & Human Rights

The first Sistas Savve module that the women from Ngalita’tae are focusing on covers leadership, gender issues, women’s rights and human rights. These sessions are run by Clarine Toki, a peer educator from the YWCA. Clarine is a passionate and energetic young woman who is part of the Ngalita’tae community. The sessions are very interactive- they involve group activities, games, drawings and discussions. The women are really engaging with the content.

Examples of questions covered in these sessions include:
  •      What makes a good leader? What makes a bad leader?
  •      What are human rights?
  •      Is the right to feel safe in our communities and homes important? 
  •      What is discrimination? 
  •      What is gender?
Clarine Toki (YWCA peer educator) talks about human rights

Sharing of ideas

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

New Beginnings - Ngalita’tae

Ngalita'tae (formally known as Marble Street) began Sistas Savve training on Monday. The group of women come from a community that's located near Chinatown, Honiara.

It's been great to see the women's excitement for the training. We look forward to getting to know each of the women and sharing their journey through the training with you all.

Ngalita'tae Group Photo

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Busy Tumas

We've had a super busy week here at Sistas Savve. The team has been out in the communities following up with the women that have completed the Sistas Savve training. It’s been so good to hear so many positive stories and changes from the women.

We’ve also been busy preparing for our new community to start Sistas Savve training. The community that the women come from is called Marble Street. These women begin their 10 weeks of Sistas Savve training on Monday. We are very excited for this new community!

On Wednesday, we had a visit from staff at the NZ Aid Programme. Jenta Tau (General Secretary of YWCA), Doris Dakai (Sistas Savve Coordinator) and past graduates shared about the Sistas Savve training with the staff. 

Women from the NZ Aid Programme check out Sistas Savve products with Doris Dakei (Sistas Savve Coordinator) and Jenta Tau (General Secretary of YWCA)

Monday, April 15, 2013

Congrats to Solomon Soap Graduates

Twenty women from the Solomon Soap community graduated from Sistas Savve training on Friday afternoon. It was a great time of celebrating the achievements of each of the participants.

Sarah Wong from the Office of the New Zealand High Commission delivered the keynote speech at the graduation. Sarah expressed her hope that the Sistas Savve training would empower the women to make good decisions for both themselves and their families.

Michael Salini, the director of the Solomon Island Planned Parenting Association (SIPPA) shared about the success of the Sistas Savve training by discussing the positive changes made by past graduates. He said that this training would change the lives of the Solomon Soap graduates too.

Sarah Wong presented the certificates to the women with Doris Dakai, the Sistas Savve coordinator.

The final part of the graduation was taken by the Solomon Soap graduates. The group presented an entertaining drama about some of the issues discussed during the training and shared a song which expressed their close friendship with each other.

Congratulations Solomon Soap, mifala barava impressed lo commitment lo Sistas Savve- iufala kam lo Sistas Savve on taem, iufala enthuastic about what iu learnm, iufala gud fo participate lo training. Iufala gud fo prepare lo future. Iufala barava top!

Sistas Savve graduates with Michael Salini and Sarah Wong

Sarah Wong presents certificate to Ileen Alina

Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Final Countdown - Solomon Soap Graduate this Friday

The Solomon Soap Ranadi community are set to graduate this Friday from the Sistas Savve training. After 10 weeks of intensive training, the women are well equipped to live healthy lives, to develop their products and to create their own small businesses. 

On Friday, the women organised a group bank account and formalised their committee. They discussed the role of the committee and learnt about ways that they could use the committee to work through arising issues. 

We are all looking forward to the graduation and are very excited for the future of these women. 

Women sign forms for their group bank account

Solomon Soap discuss the role of their committee 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Gudfala Binisi - Solomon Soap

The Sistas Savve training this week has focused on starting a small business. Solomon Soap has learnt that there is a lot that goes into running a ‘gudfala binisi’.

Joel from the Small Business Enterprise Centre (SBEC) has covered a range of topics with the ladies:

-          Income generation
-          Saving/banking
-          Budgeting
-          Book keeping
-          Planning
-          Management
-          Profits and markups…

Solomon Soap has been busy brainstorming their business ideas. We can’t wait to see what they come up with – watch this space!

Women discuss their business ideas

Joel, trainer from SBEC
Morning tea break

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Meet Florence from Feraladoa...

I met Florence this morning as she was busy preparing a delicious lunch of chicken and rice for the Solomon Soap community.

Florence graduated from the Sistas Savve training last year with the Feraladoa community. However, she continues to be involved with Sistas Savve by using her cooking skills to feed the hungry mouths of the women currently undergoing the training.

Florence was very excited to share with me about all the new skills and knowledge that she had gained from Sistas Savve: 
"We make baskets, learn business, health, hygiene, meet with the Ministry of Heath and SIPPA ...  I'm very happy because I learn more, more, more".

Florence with Solomon Soap's afternoon tea - fresh fruit

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Welkam to Solomons Soap!

Solomons Soap is the fifth community to receive Sistas Savve training! The twenty young women started training on February 4th, and will for the next ten weeks be trained in livelihood, life and health skills and knowledge.

We'll be sure to keep you posted!

Solomons Soap will be joining these Sistas Savve graduates from White River in producing beautiful products.