Helena Seneka |
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Helena Seneka

Focal Point

Papua New Guinea

In Papua New Guinea, Helena Seneka is a member of the national YWCA. “As a result of the recent COVID-19 pandemic, there is increased economic insecurity among women”, she explains. “Those who rely on an income from small informal markets are unable to make a living. This is one of the root causes of the violence they then face in their homes.” Reflecting on the lasting impact of the COVID-19 crisis, Helena says she worries about women’s emotional health because of the extra burden of care work in the home, managing household chores and playing teacher to their children.

“The increase in poverty levels also means there is an additional challenge of maintaining menstrual hygiene. We are also aware that many young women and girls may be facing harassment and violence at home.”

Shifting the Power Coalition is a feminist network of humanitarian organizations in the Pacific region, committed to promoting women’s leadership and inclusion of disabled people in humanitarian action. Since 2016, the Coalition has brought together 13 organizations across six countries to ensure that women take their rightful place at the head of emergency responses, and that the needs of women, girls and vulnerable members of the communities are at the heart of these responses. The work of the Coalition is supported by a network of national focal points. Find out more about the Shifting the Power Coalition via Official Website or follow Facebook Page