Category Archives : 1000.Oceania

Freda Talao (Papua New Guinea)

“Tears are words that heal deeper than we know.” Lawyer Freda Talao (40) is senior program officer for AusAID working mainly in the Law and Justice sector. She is also chair person of ICRAF, a human rights NGO in Papua New Guinea. She was executive director of the Family and Sexual Violence Action Committee. Over […]



“A defining moment in my life: we two – the oldest member of Parliament, from a very traditional village and me, the youngest member and a female, walking into Parliament together holding hands.” For over 30 years, Fiame Mataafa has worked on, and been a role model for, promoting and advocating socio-economic and political equality […]


“Reconciliation brings peace, but in the absence of forgiveness and repentance, reconciliation and peace cannot exist.” Apollonia Bola Talo is a grassroots activist from Guadalcanal Province, Solomon Islands. She has worked extensively on advancing women’s issues and interests relating to HIV/AIDS, income generating enterprises, training, policy development, social justice, and peace. During the late 1990s’ […]


“I was born with a heart for the people. When you have commitment and dedication, death or life does not exist for you. People first; you come later.” Sister Ceciliana’s education and training as a nurse with the Catholic Sisters of the Church in Solomon Islands opened the door for her to shoulder a very […]

KATHLEEN KAPEI (Solomon Islands)

“If women and children can be recognized as equals of men and allowed to exercise their rights as human beings, then men and women, families, communities and the society at large will benefit.” Christian faith and love for local communities triggered Sister Kathleen’s work for the welfare of women and children, human rights, social justice, […]


Gabriela Ngirmang (Palau)

 “All I am trying to do is to make a little difference so that future generations may enjoy a beautiful and peaceful future, united with respect for one another and respect for the environment.” Whatever view you hold of Gabriela Ngirmang as a peace activist (unheard of in Palau) or a Mirair (traditional title), a […]

Pauline Tangiora (New Zealand)

“We have to sit down, have a meal together, pray together and then actually talk together. Then we realize that, yes, although we have some differences they are not impassable differences.” Pauline Tangiora is a Maori elder from the Rongomaiwahine Tribe on the East Coast of the North Island of Aotearoa. She is the former […]


Marion Hancock (New Zealand)

 “You only realize how far you have come when you lie in bed at night and rethink the journey. I just cannot recall whether it was a village wag who quipped: from small acorns to mighty oaks.” In 1980, as a new mother listening to the news, Marion Hancock thought: “I should be doing something […]



Marilyn Waring (New Zealand)

 “One of the joys of getting older is being able to see the victories: nuclear-free New Zealand, the collapse of the Berlin wall, Mandela, hopefully soon a Palestinian nation state.” Marilyn Waring is a renowned New Zealand feminist, economic theorist, and academic. She criticised the UN’s System of National Accounts for ignoring the environment, subsistence […]