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Women, Development and Empowerment: A Pacific Feminist Perspective

Use of Resources - Time and Money

Use of Resources - Time and Money

The last point I wish to make on the question of power and control that also emerged from the workshop is the need to examine the use of resources (particularly time and money) in women's activities. It is important that we ask what our energies are going into, and again make choices that reflect and are related to our feminist vision. This is where having a vision becomes important. If we have an idea of the fundamental changes that we want – the different arrangements and relationships in society, that will benefit all people, including women – then we should direct our energies and our resources - time and money - towards these goals.

On Money: Women in the Pacific raise a lot of money for the church, for schools, for the community, etc. We need to ask the question:

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are we usefully channelling this money into areas that will help women's advancement?


If we channel money into churches and schools (the money women raise makes a high contribution), do these institutions in turn change or recognise women better? For example, do they provide women/girls equal access schools, and encourage equal participation by women (the church)? A woman at our 1975 women's conference posed this question:

Women are always expected to do the cleaning in the church, but how come we are not allowed to preach in it?

We need to look at resource wastage: the time and money women spend on activities that may not contribute in any way to their advancement or equality of treatment. Women should keep in mind that these activities may use up their strength and energy while not giving women any greater gains in control or participation in these institutions or in the society as a whole.