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Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre, Headquarters

The Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre (FWCC) provides crisis counselling and legal, medical and other practical support services for women and children who are sufferers and survivors of violence committed against them by men.

The FWCC is also involved in public advocacy and community education on gender violence. The Centre’s strategies are based on the conviction that violence against women is a fundamental human rights and development issue. The Centre’s work addresses all forms of violence against women including rape, beating, sexual harassment and abuse of children.

FWCC is a respected professional organisation. It was established in 1984 and has succeeded in influencing public opinion in Fiji such that most sectors of society recognise and support the need for emergency services and ongoing support for women who are subjected to any form of violence.

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Over the past four years the FWCC has done pioneering work to document, analyse and support the development of practical programs and services to deal with the problem of violence in contemporary Pacific society. The FWCC is well known and respected in international circles and its work is enhanced by participation in global networks of women working against violence. In recent years the Centre has consolidated its work and is now in a position to share its experience and expertise with Pacific organisations whose work involves efforts to combat violence against women.

 

Funding

Funding for NGOs is always a problem and for the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre (FWCC) things were no different. When the FWCC was first established, violence against women did not fit into women and/in development programs and no funder wanted to fund administrative costs. However, FWCC persevered and in 1990 came the breakthrough when we were granted a four-year grant by AusAID, the Australian Government Development funding agency (then known as AIDAB). This funding came through our Australian NGO partner Freedom from Hunger/ Community Aid Abroad. In 1995, we negotiated another 4 year grant from AusAID and received AUD $1.4 million from the Australian Regional Funding Desk to do work in Fiji and the Pacific region. In 1999, AusAID accepted our Project Design and agreed to fund us for a further 5 years with $2.2 million to allow for the consolidation of the work of FWCC on violence against women and children in Fiji and the Pacific region.

The work of FWCC has progressed and developed over the years largely because of the relationship shared with AusAID. While FWCC has been accountable in terms of reporting to AusAID and delivery of services, AusAID has been a supportive and understanding donor.

FWCC has also been privileged to have the financial support from various other donors. FWCC’s national research project on domestic violence in Fiji was funded by UNIFEM New York, Asia Foundation and the Fiji Government’s Department for Women and Culture.

Local business houses, individuals as well as charitable organisations have often contributed financially to the work of FWCC.

The Nadi, Ba and Labasa Branches of the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre are funded by NZAID.

Trustees and the Management Committee

The Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre operated as a Collective including volunteers and paid staff since its establishment in 1984. However, the structure of the Centre has changed and with the increasing number of paid staff, the management structure has also changed. While the Centre continues with its staff collective, a Management Committee has been set up including the Board of Trustees and management staff of FWCC and the Project Officers of its Branches. As a charitable organisation, FWCC has four registered Trustees who sit on the Management Committee.

The day to day running of the Centre is carried by the Coordinator and 16 staff of the FWCC while major decision-making is done in consultation with the Management Committee. The Management Committee has quarterly meetings and is responsible for overall policy and direction of the Centre.

Working committees have been established under the former Management structure and including members of the Friends of the Centre. This working committees co-opt skilled resource people to provide specialist advice and policy guidance to the Centre in key areas such as legal advocacy, staff policy and research.

Email: fwcc@connect.com.fj

Nadi Women’s Crisis Centre

Established in November 2003, the Nadi Women’s Crisis Centre is funded by NZAID. Current funding resumed in July 2004 and will end in June 2005. The Centre is located on the western side of Viti Levu, Fiji’s largest island. The services provided by the Centre extends down the cane-belt area to include the townships of Nadi, Lautoka, Sigatoka and surrounding villages and rural settlements. The address of the Centre is 84 Sagayam Road, Nadi. The Centre’s postal address is PO Box 2663, Nadi Town and telephone contact is (679) 6707 558. Working hours at the Centre are from 8.30am- 4pm, Monday-Friday.

History:

The Centre was previously located in Lautoka and known as the Lautoka Women’s Crisis Centre. A group of concerned women discussed the need for a centre that provided crisis counselling and support services to the victims/survivors of violence in Lautoka and contacted the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre to express their interest in setting up a centre in Lautoka similar to that of FWCC. FWCC Coordinator was invited to explain the details of operating and managing a crisis centre. In December 1994, a group of 20 women attended a one-week training course run by FWCC on basic counseling skills. 13 women then volunteered their time as counsellors, which led to the formation of the Lautoka Women’s Crisis Centre. In November 2003, the Lautoka Women’s Crisis Centre ceased operation and opened up for services in Nadi. This move came about to cater for clients coming from the Sigatoka/Nadi area.

Labasa Women’s Crisis Centre

Established in 1994, the Labasa Women’s Crisis Centre is funded by NZAID. Current funding resumed in July 2004 and will end in June 2005. The Labasa Women’s Crisis Centre is located on the Northern side of Vanua Levu, Fiji’s second largest island. It covers the 3 provinces of Cakaudrove, Bua and Macuata in which the township of Labasa is located. The Centre is located in Bayly house, Siberia Road, Labasa and the project Officer is Sera Bogitini. The postal address and telephone contact of the Centre are PO Box 319, Labasa and (679) 8814 609. The working hours are 8.30am-4pm, Monday-Friday.

History:

In 1991, after attending a Counsellor Training Workshop and awareness raising on violence against women, a small group of volunteers led by Bimla Singh (the Centre’s senior counselor and community educator) of Labasa, started to work with individual victims and speaking to women’s groups and schools. Other women became interested so that in May 1994, 28 women formed the Labasa Women’s Crisis Centre following another workshop training with FWCC in Labasa. The volunteers used Bimla Singh’s home and telephone as their contact to counsel women, accompany them to court, conduct fund-raising activities and give talks to community groups and schools. Today, the Labasa Women’s Crisis Centre is run as a collective, with four full-time staff and volunteers.

The Rakiraki Women’s Crisis Centre

The Rakiraki Women’s Crisis Centre is a branch of the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre. It is a multi-racial, nongovernment organisation committed to the betterment of women’s lives through collective efforts against violence. The Centre operates on the principle of EMPOWERMENT OF WOMEN and is based on the conviction that women’s rights are human rights.

History

Following the training of a group of women on Gender, Violence against Women and Human Rights and a Male Advocacy Training in early 2000s some women recognised the need for a Crisis Centre for Ra.
After further planning and meetings, a group including the then Women’s Interest Officer and other interested women established a collective and requested the FWCC to establish a centre to cater for the needs of the women, girls and children of Ra.
After negotiations with the New Zealand Government Aid Program, funding was acquired and the Rakiraki Women’s Crisis Centre opened its doors in July 2011.
The Centre was opened by UN Women Assistant Secretary General John Hendra.

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Ba Womens Crisis Centre

History

Concern at the huge increase of violent assaults against women in the Ba area prompted the late Veena Singh, a social worker, to gain the support of women from the Soroptimist Club of Ba to meet in 1991 to discuss ways in which a crisis counseling service could be established to cater for the needs of women victims/ survivors of domestic violence and sexual assaults.

Through help from the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre in Suva and resource persons from the area, a two-week training workshop was held for forty women in February 1992. This led to the establishment of a small group of women, working on a voluntary basis, who provided counseling to those in need.

Later in 1992, an office with part-time staff was opened through the assistance of overseas donors and fundraising by the Soroptimist Club. Today, the Centre is run as a collective, with full-time staff and volunteers.

Fiji Women’s Crisis Center

88 Gordon Street
PO Box 12882, Suva, Fiji
Tel: (679) 331 3300 Fax: (679)331 3650
Email: fwcc@connect.com.fj
Website: www.fijiwomen.com
Monday-Friday: 8.30am to 4.30pm
Saturday: 10.00am to 12 noon

Labasa Women’s Crisis Centre

Bayley House, Siberia Road
PO Box 4029, Labasa, Fiji
Tel/ Fax: (679) 881 4609
Monday-Friday: 8.30am to 3.30pm

Rakiraki Women’s Crisis Centre

Lot 2, Yaratale Road, Vaileka
PO Box 154, Rakiraki, Fiji
Tel: (679)669 4012 Fax: (679) 669 4012
Monday-Friday: 8.30am to 3.30pm

Nadi Women’s Crisis Centre

84 Sagayam Road
PO Box 2663, Nadi, Fiji
Tel: (679)670 7558 Fax: (679) 670 3058
Monday-Friday: 8.30am to 3.30pm

Ba Women’s Crisis Centre

21 Navatu Street, Varadoli
PO Box 3127, Ba, Fiji
Tel: (679)667 0466 Fax: (679) 667 8389
Monday-Friday: 8.30am to 3.30pm