Gwaunafau Community Undergo Leadership Training

Posted on 24 August 2022
Group presentation with the activity paper by GCDA media.
© Henry Kaniki
HONIARA, 21ST AUGUST 2022. The community of Gwaunafau in East Kwara’ae successfully ended its applied leadership workshop over the weekend (19th – 20th August 2022) with a total of 34 (24 adults and 10 children). The training was made possible through Gwaunafau Community Development Association (GCDA) with the financial support received from UNDP Small Grant Program.

The training was facilitated by Henry Kaniki (WWF Solomon Islands Program Staff) – a leadership fellow who has been trained in numerous prestigious leadership programs including the Pacific Islands Leadership Program at East-West Center (Hawaii) with decades of experience in the community conservation program.

The aim of the program is simply to give the association management committee, women, girls, and youths self-confidence in a leadership role, bring hope to them when there is none, and empower them with their vision and mission concerning the association. Topics covered in the leadership workshop are as follows; Definition of leadership, exploring the core values and principles of great leaders, group discussion and presentation, self-reflection and knowing your leadership trail, and discussion on leadership quotes.

 During the closing ceremony, the Chairlady of GCDA Mrs Daisy O’owane stated in her speech that this training is a first of its kind since the establishment of the association in mid-2014. The Applied Leadership training has added value to the existing knowledge of the members. She added that the workshop has also strengthened both GCDA leaders and followers in going forward.                

Mr Samuel Mauasi (GCDA Board Member) mentioned that the training has sharpened the leadership’s ability to take ownership and guide the work of the association now and in the future. Furthermore, the training has given its members a wake-up call to learn about the key roles and functions of a leader. Mr Mauasi added that the training was so timely for the members as they were at the early stage of implementing the UNDPSGP project.

Mr Collin Gereniu (GCDA founder and Liaison Coordinator) highlighted that this learning becomes a mirror as it corrects us to reflect on our leadership role. He further appealed to the members to take ownership of the project and maintain the spirit of working together going forward.

Mr Norman Gereniu (Teacher by profession and a member of GCDA) added by saying that the training is just the beginning of creating a positive reputation for the Association. The Gwaunafau village is a central area where surrounding highland communities gather for religious, health, and school activities therefore the strategy that the association is taking will benefit the community in the long term.

On behalf of the association, Mrs Daisy O’owane (Chairlady) appreciates UNDP through its small grant program for supporting the association that enables partners to assist when there is a capacity gap needed within the association.

In the closing remarks, Mr Kaniki acknowledges the participation of the community and the enthusiasm shown during the cause of the workshop. He highlighted that WWF Solomon Islands is so honoured to assist the association with the training. Despite being marine-focused here in the Solomon Islands, the organization also assists communities with training such as inclusive finance, leadership, and many more.

The program ended with a token of appreciation given to the facilitator by the community as a sign of partnership and acknowledging partners for sharing through offering training to the rural people.
Group presentation with the activity paper by GCDA media.
© Henry Kaniki Enlarge
Collin Gereniu, a participant, providing support to the workshop facilitator.
© Henry Kaniki Enlarge
Members of the Gwaunafau Community Development Association.
© Henry Kaniki Enlarge