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Solomons: Positive Parenting Update

November 2018

Mary Vunagi, Minnie Kiriau and George Kiriau.
Mary Vunagi, Minnie Kiriau and George Kiriau. © ABM, 2016.

The Positive Parenting Program (PPP) in the Solomon Islands aims to break down barriers and unhelpful traditional beliefs that may be harmful to children within families and communities. It is implemented through the Mothers’ Union (MU) which is part of the Anglican Church of Melanesia (ACOM).

This year there have been some positive developments for the Positive Parenting Program.

ABM funded a Child Protection Policy review which means that the Anglican Church of Melanesia and the Mothers’ Union now satisfy the requirements for Australian Volunteers International (AVI). It is hoped that an AVI volunteer will soon be available to support the MU office.

George Kiriau, the Program Coordinator, recently reported that Community Facilitators from the Diocese of Central Solomons and the Diocese of Ysabel have conducted Positive Parenting groups. ABM previously funded Facilitators trainings in these two dioceses.

Kate Winney, ABM’s Pacific Program Coordinator, says, “It is good news to hear the groups are still starting and running, and having an impact on families and communities.”

One of the founding coordinators for the program in the Solomon Islands is Mary Vunagi, who is a former MU President. She recounted some stories of memorable moments during her time of running the workshop:

“A policeman attended the Facilitators training and didn’t agree that you shouldn’t beat your children or wife. He was adamant, but then we had the “Unlearn to learn” session and he realised. Now he has good relationships with his children.”

“One women came into a parenting group and was silent. She did not talk the whole time, until the very last day. Then she joined in on the theatre session. She found her voice.”

Kate told us that Pamela Sau Abana was elected the new Provincial Mothers’ Union President for Melanesia this year, and in the last few months ABM and MU have been discussing a re-design of the program including revisions to the Positive Parenting Program manual to be more Solomon Islands specific.

Thank you to all of you who have donated generously to ABM’s Positive Parenting Program and are helping to ensure that the lives of families and communities in the Solomon Islands continue to be transformed.


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