My name is Maria Manwo, I am 27 years old and my parents are from Atchin and Pentecost islands in the Republic of Vanuatu (Pacific Islands). I work as a research officer at the Santo Sunset Environment Network, leading fieldwork with indigenous women, and facilitating workshops, training and awareness programs with remote communities on Western Santo for a gender empowerment project. I did all my primary, Junior/senior Secondary as well as first 4 years of University majoring in Chemistry/Mathematics in Vanuatu and then got a scholarship to study clinical medicine in China.
Although focusing on gender equality and women’s empowerment is new to me, I enjoy everything we’ve been working on so far, especially assisting remote indigenous people in West Santo. Helping others is one of my top passions, and being able to apply my knowledge and skills for people who need support. This Santo Sunset Environment Network project is also helping me build up my own confidence to work alongside and help my fellow indigenous women.
One day I will serve as a Medical doctor, to be able to further help indigenous women remote places. I dream of going to Africa as a Doctor without Borders.
Maria Manwo- Santo Sunset Environment Network
women, conservation, nature, sustainable, business, protect, leadership, gender, equality, empowerment