Our Approach

Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development (Pacific Women) is a 10-year AU$320 million Australian Government commitment to improve the political, social and economic opportunities of women living in the Pacific. Commencing in 2012, Pacific Women supports 14 Pacific countries to meet the commitments made in the 2012 Pacific Island Forum Leaders’ Gender Equality Declaration. Pacific Women works with Pacific governments, civil society organisations, the private sector, and multilateral, regional and United Nations agencies to achieve its four intended outcomes:

  1. Leadership and Decision-Making
    Women, and women’s interests, are increasingly and effectively represented and visible through leadership at all levels of decision-making.
  2. Economic Empowerment
    Women have expanded opportunities to earn an income and accumulate economic assets.
  3. Ending Violence Against Women
    Violence against women is reduced and survivors of violence have access to support services and to justice.
  4. Enhanced Agency
    Women in the Pacific will have a stronger sense of their own agency, supported by a changing legal and social environment and through increased access to the services they need.

Pacific Women is managed through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) with strategies and implementation guided by the values and intentions of Pacific people and governments. Approximately 70 per cent of the AU$320 million commitment supports activities at the country level. The remaining 30 per cent supports regional or multi-country activities. More information on activities supported around the region can be found here.

As one of the largest ever commitments to gender equality for the Australian Government, Pacific Women offers a remarkable opportunity not only to harness resources to work with Pacific governments and implementing partners to accelerate the political, economic and social advancement of women across the Pacific.

In the first five years of program implementation, over 160 activities have been funded (approximately AU$132 million) with results including:

  • 10,605 women were supported to take on leadership roles at the community, provincial and national-level
  • 43,833 people have had access to civic and voter education
  • 5,964 women have accessed financial literacy training and financial services
  • 56,076 women have accessed crisis support services
  • 526,785 people have participated in community awareness sessions on ending violence against women
  • 3,409 women have had formal opportunities to share their ideas and learn from each other
  • 1,053 women have attained formal qualifications
  • 3,086 men have undertaken male advocacy training