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Sandy Fong: Women and youth in peacebuilding

Published on 18/12/16

Sandy Fong will join us on Tuesday 20th September, 12.05pm to 12.55pm, to talk about participation of women and youths in peacebuilding processes, and the need for dialogue particularly in building understanding and relationships in multicultural societies, and highlight some of the peace and conflict issues in Fiji and the Pacific.

"I am from the Fiji Islands and currently living in Geneva. During 2012 - 2013, I was a Rotary Peace Fellow with the University of Bradford, where I did my MA in Conflict Resolution. Prior to Bradford, I had set up a small organisation called Dialogue Fiji and facilitated dialogues across Fiji for over 3 years. I sit on the board of PeaceWomen Across the Globe, and in 2005 was part of a project that nominated 1000 women from around the world for the Nobel Peace Prize. We did not win the prize but we were able to share stories of 1000 women doing amazing work from local to international level.

For this project, I was responsible for coordinating the stories of the 36 women from the Pacific who were nominated. Fiji is often seen as just a holiday destination and not a place for 'peacebuilding' work. While there is no armed conflict in Fiji, we have suffered under 4 political coups, 3 of which were due to race relations and nationality issues and these coups have deeply divided a multicultural society and the race card has been heavily politicised.

At the moment, I am working with the Better Cotton Initiative in Geneva. It's a little different from my human rights and peacebuilding background and work. I am still engaged with work back in Fiji on a voluntary basis with the Fiji Women's Rights Movement Emerging Leaders Forum and at the international level with PeaceWomen Across the Globe."

Please contact Shahzad Rahman for more information.