Ministry of Health and Social Development
Tortola, British Virgin Islands
Telephone: 1(284)468-2272 or 2174
The Office of Gender Affairs in the British Virgin Islands has shared its expertise on gender affairs with the Turks and Caicos following a two-week attachment of the Director of Gender of Turks and Caicos, Mrs. Carolyn Dickenson.
Mrs. Dickenson’s attachment from June 13 to 24, allowed her to understudy the Office of Gender Affairs by connecting and comparing the best practices and policies as it relates to gender.
Gender Affairs Coordinator, Ms. Lorolie Connor expressed her enthusiasm about Mrs. Dickenson’s visit stating that the opportunity allows for progressive planning by British Overseas Territories (OTs) so that they can all work towards achieving the same goals.
Ms. Connor highlighted that during the trip, a conference call was held between herself, Mrs. Dickenson and Gender Development Coordinator in Anguilla, Mrs. Ronya Foy-Connor. She added that this kind of collaboration between the gender coordinators creates a level playing field in the Caribbean Region. Coincidentally, Mrs. Foy-Connor understudied the Office of Gender Affairs in BVI in 2014.
Mrs. Dickenson said that she admires the work of Ms. Connor and the BVI and believes the collaborative effort will keep the OTs connected with current gender affairs to create consistency as the approach will be based on cultural diversity, but the concepts will be the same.
Ms. Connor also said that she is aware of the cultural differences but highlighted a lot of similarities in the challenges faced by OTs. She emphasised that there is a lot of work to be done to change the society’s belief from gender being about women issues to gender equality to determine the overall sustainability of the men, women and children in society.
During her visit, Mrs. Dickenson met with officials within the Ministry of Health and Social Development, the Social Development Department, the Family Support Network, the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, Employee Assistance Programme and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution.
Mrs. Dickenson also mentioned that her most memorable part of trip were the meetings with the Employee Relations Unit and the Director of Public Prosecutions. The Employee Relations Unit offered insight on the various aspects of employee relations and employee assistance, as well as the different units within Government’s Human Resources.
Following her meeting with the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mrs. Dickenson said she had a better understanding of the need for the Domestic Violence Protocol and the necessity of a collaborative effort by several agencies for its success.
For more information on Mrs. Dickenson’s attachment, please tune in to the GIS Radio Report on Thursday, June 30 on the following local stations: ZBVI at 8:35 a.m. and 6:35 p.m.; ZCCR at 7:30 p.m.; and ZVCR at 12 noon. Persons are also asked to like the Office Gender Affairs’ Facebook page to keep abreast of gender news, initiatives and events at username GenderAffairsVI.
The Office of Gender Affairs, under the umbrella of the Ministry of Health and Social Development, is mandated with raising awareness on gender related matters and implementing policies related to gender equality and equity.