This program was established primarily to address critical development issues aﬀecting the needy and vulnerable women living in urban settlement areas. The main issues that aﬀect women in urban dwellings are not limited to gender-based violence, unemployment, and neglect by immediate family members, gambling, prostitution, and drug & alcohol abuse and also aﬀected by other forms of social disorders. The main target group for this program are women and girls who are vulnerable and needy in the category of single-mothers, widows, orphans, disable and those that live with HIV/AIDS. The eligible age group required to participate in this program is adult women and girls who are over 18 years old. However those girls who are in the youth category between the age of 14-25 years old are then encouraged and placed in the Youth Skills Training & Capacity Building Support Program.
The main services that we provide to the women in this program are primarily life skills training and extension support in the areas of sewing, cooking, craft & billum making, ﬂoriculture, backyard gardening and ﬁnancial literacy & SME empowerment initiatives. Other complimentary support services include registration of women groups and building their governance and administrative capacity in order to have a stronger voice and movement in the development process under their respective LLGs and Districts. To date we have beneﬁted well over 300 women with our life skills training and entrepreneurial support scheme in a number of settlements in Lae including; Boundary Rd settlement, Nawae-Bundi Camp settlement, 4-Mile settlement, 10-Mile settlement, Kamkumung, East Taraka and West Taraka.
At post training, we identify eligible women to participate in the entrepreneurial support scheme in which we give them interest free micro-credit loans of up to K200 per head to kick start their income generating activity of their choice and report back to us after 3 months of engagement. In addition, the women are then linked up to access micro-credit facilities with their accounts opened with our existing bank partners such as BSP and Mi-Bank. It is our interest to ensure that the women participants are successful in their activity with regular support such as M&E reporting, coaching and organising market expos to display their products and services and share various talents and skills being produced throughout the program. This program is currently targeting women and girls in urban and per-urban settlements in Lae and we hope to bring that experience to other urban areas in Papua New Guinea.
The main development partners in this program are the SDA Mission, NARI and WIADF and respective LULLG Ward Members. This is a self-funded program of which more than 70% of funding is put up by ANIS.