Hallo, Talofa, Bula, Malolelei and Welkam.
My name is Koroi Hawkins. I am a Journalist from the Solomon Islands. A tiny country in the South Pacific with just a little over 600,000 people.
I was fortunate enough to be selected to participate in an APJC Fellowship on Women Media and Economic Literacy in the Pacific.
There are 12 fellows from Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Samoa, Vanuatu and Tonga and all of them are women. Except for me, the token male. (two other male counterparts made were unable to make it at the last minute.)
Today we have just been learning to use online and social media for Journalism and from now on I will be blogging and tweeting daily about my experiences in Australia and the lessons learned in Leadership, Financial Reporting, Women’s Issues and Economic Literacy.
We are now in the second week of the Fellowship and already I have learned so much about myself and my craft, all insights I hope to share in the weeks ahead.
Also outside of the training room I have been exploring the wonderful City of Melbourne and have been blown away by the explosion of cultures, sights, sounds, smells and tastes that the City has to offer. I hope share some of these experiences as well.
APJC Fellows gather around the grave of William Barak a revered Aboriginal Leader of the Wurundjeri Tribe.
Yesterday, we had the honour and privilege of visiting Coranderrk Station where we met the inspirational current generation of Aboriginal Women in Brooke Collins and Jacqui Wandin who are part of the ongoing fight in Victoria and all around Australia for the recognition and preservation of the culture and history of First Australians and protecting the rights of their descendants in generations to come.
And finally you can’t say you have been to Australia if you haven’t met the real Australian icons the Kangaraoo, the wombat and of course the cute but surprisingly sleepy Koala.(Apparently the gum leaves are a mild narcotic.. dont try and chew them while driving!).
The APJC Fellowship is truly a fascinating and worthwhile program and it is about to get even better with a visit to Canberra coming up next week and meetings with influential Women Leaders including Australian Foreign Affairs Minister, Julie Bishop, and Australia’s Ambassador for Women and Girls, Natasha Stott Despoja.
All that and more coming up next week and I would like to take the time here make special mention of my beloved wife, Margaret Kori Maealasia, for her sacrifice and commitment in looking after our four beautiful children, so that I could attend this fellowship.
And to Effie Hawkins, Happy Mothers Day Mom, thank you for all you taught me and all your sacrifices that made me the man I am today.
Happy Mothers Day weekend to all and have a safe and blessed weekend.