BRIDGE in Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia Dec 2017

Written by
Lisa Bradford
Monday, 19 February 2018 11:45

Two BRIDGE modules were conducted in Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia between the 3rd and 8th of December 2017 for the PIANZEA (Pacific Islands, Australia and New Zealand Electoral Administrators) network. This was the first time that BRIDGE has been conducted in the Federated States of Micronesia.

Twenty-six participants (15 Female, 11 Male) from the five countries of Federated States of Micronesia, Palau, Nauru, Republic of Marshall Islands and Kiribati gathered for the workshops covering the modules of Gender and Civic Education.

Four facilitators delivered these workshops:

  • Gordon Marshall – AEC (Lead and Accrediting)
  • Lisa Bradford – AEC (Workshop)
  • Patrick Bing – Republic of Marshall Islands (TtF Complete)
  • Takiakia Maatia – Kiribati (TtF Complete).

The Gender module was conducted during the first three days with participants exploring the barriers facing women in the electoral process and then possible strategies to overcome these barriers.

Feedback from the Gender module included:

  • Gender issue is something we need to promote in the Pacific Region
  • Barriers and resolutions have been very interesting and similar to our situation
  • The importance of awareness programs
  • Quotas was an interesting topic as it could be a useful concept for our country
  • The most beneficial aspect of this training is the realisation of a potential partnership with the Election Commissioner’s offices to advance gender equality.

Following the Gender module, the final three days was the delivery of the Civic Education module. Participants investigated what resources could be used for Civic Education and Voter Information and the steps required for a successful program. Creativity was flowing as programs were designed and delivered to the larger group.

Feedback from the Civic Education module included:

  • I enjoy the inclusiveness through the interactive activities. Fun and helps all to learn.
  • I’ve learned that we can do our public awareness in so many ways
  • Everyone is improving in presenting
  • Understanding all the concepts and principles + more importantly the practical side of it
  • I want to thank BRIDGE for making me part of this workshop. I’ve gained a lot and from what I’ve learned I think it helped me improve my role.
  • Different countries perspective were introduced which could be beneficial to others
  • These workshops were very interesting, fun, relevant and valuable. Facilitators have been very accommodating in ensuring that all participants grasped as much from the learning and sharing. Apart from building participants knowledge, it has also built confidence in us as electoral officers and advocates of democracy.

It was a pleasure to work with all the participants raising electoral awareness and deliver some significant outcomes and also enjoy the hospitality of the Pohnpei people.