SEEP was formed in 2000, in a post-coup era that necessitated widespread civic participation to reclaim leverage for community led development. In 2014, a democratic parliament was established, yet Fijians are still challenged in leveraging their own development agendas in light of a government program to utilize land for revenue generation through private investment. SEEP’s priorities are:
- Community engagement in rural communities that increases local practices of democracy and leadership, including gender equality and collective agreements
- Assisting community based organizations led by women, and agricultural programs by youth
- Support communities targeted by private developers, particularly land owning units
- Organize allies throughout civil society
- Establish agroecology and slow food practices in rural and urban setting that promote local knowledge of traditional food preparation
In the last year, SEEP has focused on five sites for agroecological production and education, including one grade school. SEEP is the only social justice centered organizing network based in indigenous communities (Itoukei) in Fiji. They are working to build local leaders in many sectors of civil society in Fiji – the women and youth movements, the development sector, the anti-mining movement, and the environmental justice sector. SEEP is partnering with the Women’s Ministry of Fiji to develop its strategy for participation in the COP23 process. It is also a member of the Slow Food Network and Rethinking Development. The organization operates with 12 fulltime staff, and 10 community-based organizers in rural areas.
Read more about Social Empowerment Education Programme here.
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