Elenoa Talei Qica a.k.a Barbie

Suva, Fiji. 5 December 2018

Poverty is a state of deprivation or lack of usual socially accepted amount of basic needs or money to meet one’s daily wants. One leading factor in our community leading to poverty is unemployment.  

Many women also have to deal with both poverty and violence. 

Violence comes in physical, mental, economic and other forms. It happens in homes and in workplaces. I’m a woman feminist advocating on ending all forms of violence and working with communities and other women who are facing unemployment and violence. I am trying to end violence in my own life, and with others. 

We all know that women have been sexually violated by their bosses in workplaces, but not many people want to talk about that. Women don’t want to talk about it because they might lose their job, and have no money, for themselves and their family. 

So they stay quiet and violence continues and gets worse when the boss knows they cannot do anything. So we need systems that can be called on at the times when women need help. We need doctors, lawyers and NGOs that do not cost money for women to find help. The government needs to make sure good justice services are there for women. Otherwise many die or have mental or physical illness from violence in the end. We are trying to stop that, through our various community groups,

Other women are preferred by their partners to stay home and do household chores, causing women to feel like that they are being emotionally and mentally abused. Why should they only stay home, and not fulfil their own dreams? Both partners should do work at home, share it.

We are fed up of old beliefs about gender and sexuality, poverty, ethnicity, class, and other negative comments that stop us from leading in social movements and society as a whole. This #FijiGrasssrootsFeminists campaign tells you that women are already doing work. We do not need others to save us. if you want to help, work with us.

*Finding a way to end unemployment, poverty and violence; I think that more women want to engage in community work. 

*We want small businesses training, we want to have vocational training, and we cannot afford fees so please have scholarships for women in poverty levels. 

*We especially need to know about our individual human rights. 

*We need feminist knowledge and training, to change society for ourselves and others. 

Now in my life, I see that lack of understanding our individual human rights is one thing that makes men and community took us lightly. It is the way that other people can treat us something like slaves. We are not.

We are women of Wonder. We are Majestic. We have Knowledge. We have Authority. We are Women of worth.