WOMEN in Choiseul prov- ince have been seeking funds to build their own resource centre. But after many years searching for funds they are able to build one thanks to the provincial government strengthening programme (PGSP) which steps in to solve their prob- lem. The women now have two storey permanent building at Kiruqela. PGSP is an institu- tional strengthening pro- gramme aiming to develop the capacity of the Minis- try of Provincial Govern- ment and Institutional Strengthening (MPGIS) and the nine provincial governments to fulfil their mandates in either deliver- ing, or coordinating with line departments for the ef- fective delivery of services.
The programme is fi- nanced by the Austra- lian Government through RAMSI, the European Union (EU), the United Nations Capital Develop- ment Fund (UNCDF) and the United Nations Devel- opment Program (UNDP) with a counterpart fund from the Solomon Island Government (SIG). MPGIS is executing the programme with UNDP as the administrative agent. One of the beneficiaries of the women’s centre, Helen Zazu Nowak said the women of Choiseul prov- ince appreciated the help from PGSP. “The women have strug- gled for so long to secure funding to build the wom- en’s centre. “All our proposals for the project that were made to other donors were not ac- cepted. She said the women nev- er got a chance for a project until PGSP stepped in and solved their problem. She said the project was already completed but is yet to be handed over the women.
“The building is quiet expensive and costs about $400,000. She said with centre will benefit a lot of women since the population of women within that areas is be- tween 600 and 800. “This centre will not only benefit the women but the youths and children as well. “Women can do their crafts and would also have links with other women centres in Choiseul and together can make connec- tion abroad,” Nowak said. “The centre is quiet com- plete but the only problem is water and furniture. “We need improvements in the future.”
She also added that there is also a need for women’s centres to be built in other areas in the province. Nowak’s only wish is for the PGSP funding to recog- nise them in the future. Also funded by the PGSP are the furnitures inside of the new building of the Choiseul provincial cham- ber. A visit inside the cham- bers showed tables, chairs, speakers and public address (PA) system inside of the building. Meanwhile speaking to the media team, provincial advisor for Choiseul prov- ince Korolyn Zutu said the Provincial Capacity Devel- opment Fund (PCDF) has assisted the Choiseul gov- ernment and is a boost for the province. She said the capacity building programme has gone down to the rural peo- ple with the service devel- opment which is a big help. She explained that all the projects are million dollar projects. “The province is trying to spread out the funding equally to every sector to the women, youth, and children as it prioritise ev- eryone. However she added that transportation is a big problem they are facing as well as technical people and engineers to build the projects. However she said that is not a big challenge.
“The PCDF helped trained staff and Members of Provincial Assembly (MPA) and then will be go- ing down to the rural areas. She said people in ru- ral areas are engaged in agricultural and fisheries and therefore the capacity training will train them in the specific sector and also economically helped them. Ms Zutu said the service delivery down to where it targets the people and if they are doing well will be getting more funds but that entirely depends on the MPAs. “They have annual plans so they know the needs of the people.”