From Japan to the Maldives: the Need to Empower Women
Reaching Beyond the Glass Ceiling

On the occassion of International Women's Day (10 March), Shoko Noda, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in the Maldives writes about the glass ceilings, AND glass walls that confine women and girls within a box of traditional and societal norms. Outlining her experiences from From Japan to the Maldives, Shoko highlights the need to empower women.

Make My Island initiative, launched on 19 December 2016 is a platform which invites private sector partners to invest and work together with UNDP to provide sustainable development solutions for Maldivian communities.
UNDP Maldives Launches 'MAKE MY ISLAND'

'Make My Island' - a unique initiative inviting partners to invest and work together with UNDP to provide sustainable development solutions for Maldivian communities.

Waters of Paradise - Adapting to Climate Change in the Maldives

Today, one of the main problems for Maldivians is water. And it is likely to get worse with climate change. While Northern islands face drinking water shortages during the dry season, from April to May, most Southern islands face a different problem: flooding. The United Nations Development Programme with support from the Green Climate Fund is supporting the Government of the Maldives, to ensure that most vulnerable islands have year-round access to potable water and that they can cope with floods on their own.

BOYS WILL BE BOYS?

UNDP-Maldives staff, Umar Mavee, shares his personal experience of changing gender roles and encourages men and boys to become agents of change to achieve gender equality.

 Solar panels installed in 11 schools of Laamu Atoll
AFFORDABLE AND CLEAN ENERGY FOR LAAMU ATOLL SCHOOLS

Installation of solar panels in 11 schools of Laamu Atoll is the second energy efficiency project implemented under the LECReD - Low Emission Climate Resilient Development programme supported by UNDP in Laamu Atoll. Last year, the Laamu Harbour LED Light Project was successfully concluded, and has led to nearly 50 percent reduction in energy consumption. The project has saved an estimated USD 56,000 in electricity costs for the entire atoll.

Currently women constitute only 5% of councilors in Maldives.
Empowering Women in Public Life

Wife. Mother. Atoll Councilor. Meet Nazla who’s shaping the future of Shaviyani Atoll as the only female member in the Council. Currently women constitute only 5% of councilors in Maldives. At UNDP, we’d love to see more women like Nazla leading the way in Atoll and Island Councils.

Mapping Disaster Risk in the Maldives
Using drones to fight risks from climate change

Here's how United Nations Development Programme - UNDP , national partners and DJI are helping the #Maldives prepare for emergency response! Watch how our partnership with DJI has helped map the island of Maabaidhoo in 3D to empower communities to better prepare for development challenges caused by climate change.

First National Legal Aid Confrence Encourages ProBono Legal Services to Assist Vulnerable Groups

The main objective of this conference supported by UNDP is to engage with the legal community and relevant stakeholders to explore alternative legal aid mechanisms, including pro-bono initiatives to enhance accessibility to legal aid services at a national level.

From Corals to Crustaceans: The Worth of Nature. WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY 2016 Message from Shoko Noda - UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in the Maldives

On this World Environment Day, I am happy to be speaking to you from this paradise – Maldives. The country may be small in size, but it is a place of outstanding natural beauty and vibrant culture. These lands and seas are abundant in nature’s wealth. It is home to some of the richest reservoirs of tropical and marine life on the planet. Despite these assets, small island nations such as the Maldives face numerous challenges. An entire culture and way of life is under threat. As the climate continues to change, we are seeing more pressures on things we value - such as our beautiful islands and seas, and the plants and animals that live in them. A threat to the environment is a direct threat to the people who inhabit it.

Support to the National Human Rights Action Plan

As the Attorney General's Office launches the National Human Rights Framework on Human Rights Day, UNDP Maldives look forward to support the AGO in making the process inclusive and participatory and bring the voices of the people into the National Human Rights Action Plan that will follow.

Fares-Maathoda Island leading the charge in better waste management

Like many other islands in the Maldives, despite having its own Waste Management Centre, the whole of Faresmaathoda was being treated like a waste dump. This changed when Red Production won a small grant of the Mangroves for the Future Programme (MFF). Under this grant, a waste governance mechanism was brought about and the Waste Management Centre was made functional through the hard work of the Local Council and other partners. Not only is the island a much better and a pleasant place, but the community is continuously testing and finding new solutions for island level waste management which can be replicated elsewhere in the Maldives.

Study Tour to Seychelles: A lesson in local governance and environmental management for small island states

This was the first international study tour conducted for participants from local communities under the LECReD programme, currently being piloted in Laamu Atoll, which seeks to mainstream issues such as low carbon lifestyles, climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction into local development planning and service delivery for greater community-level ownership and sustainability.

Ukulhas Island sowing the seeds for women’s empowerment

Here is an innovative method of farming, and it’s driven by the women of AA. Ukulhas. In this inspiring initiative by the Women’s Development Committee of AA. Ukulhas and Ukulhas Council, they tackle several sustainable development challenges in the island community. This farming project is supported by a medium grant of the Mangroves for the Programme (MFF), Co-Chaired by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and International Union for Conservation (IUCN). The project is not only providing a livelihood opportunity for many women who have lost their income sources with the changing times, but also helping them to eat healthy and locally. This method of growing crops uses less chemical and fertilizers.

For life on land, protecting life below water

While the underwater life in the Maldives is stunning, I worry about its future. The corals were bleached badly earlier this year, and the sea temperatures have risen because of the El Niño. When I recently returned to my favorite reef, I felt the number of fish had dwindled. Once vibrant underwater life looked rather dull. I hear horror stories about boats that transport waste from resort hotels dumping that waste in the ocean, even before it reaches the collection point. Plastic bags, ropes, and pieces of Styrofoam can be seen everywhere. The marine ecosystem, critical to everyday island life, is under grave risk. Coral bleaching affects fish habitat that in turn impacts food supply and peoples’ income. Bleached and damaged reefs can also affect tourism, which can threaten the national economy. We have to act now to reverse this vicious trend; we have to make the protection of marine life central to development plans.

Trainings on political leadership and women’s empowerment

Through our programme, we delivered targeted trainings on political leadership and women’s empowerment to more than 100 men and women from political parties, civil service and private sector.

The first Sea Turtle Protection & Awareness Festival in the Maldives, held in Laamu Atoll

“The recent country-wide ban on catching of sea turtles, and collection of turtle eggs - which came to effect on April 1st of this year, is an example of concrete measures to protect sea turtles. Still, much more remains to be done. The Sea Turtle Festival has been a great step to raise community awareness, so that people can care enough to trigger meaningful change. Collective efforts are needed to ensure this magnificent creature continues to grace our world.” – Shoko Noda, UNDP Resident Representative.