Customary rights mean local communities own most of the land we plant on, and we work in close partnership to ensure that the community as a whole benefit from our activities.
Loose Fruit Mamas initiative
The Loose Fruit Mamas (‘Lus Frut Meri’) scheme began in 1997 with an objective that women benefit from their families’ oil-palm blocks. The project involved the introduction of the Mama Card, which enables women (workers, including smallholders and dependants) to be paid directly for their work. Initially trialled with a group of ten females, the scheme has grown to more than 6,000 Mama cardholders benefitting from additional income and directly contributing to their families' welfare. As part of the initiative, trainers organise female empowerment programmes throughout the community. We have made it a mandatory requirement for all participants to complete one day of financial literacy training for each income-generating course they participate in. Related initiatives include the Chicken Revolving Fund, which enables Mama cardholders to raise and sell chickens as an additional income source. The group also raises money through grants and donations that go towards facilities to help women generate income.
Women Empowering Women in West New britain
Established in 2011, Women Empowering Women (WEW) is an association of like-minded females to encourage robust family settings to empower women and young girls in eliminating all forms of violence against women, children and men. The WEW team conducts long-term impact projects, and programmes focused on community engagement through economic empowerment activities. These include life-skills training and workshops for cooking, flower arrangements, draping, and sewing. Interested women and men are provided with hands-on training, which gives them the ability to earn additional income and supplement their fortnightly pay.
WEW also works with the West New Britain Health Authority to extend female healthcare initiatives. The association also frequently supports the Kimbe Urban Clinic’s general maintenance and refurbishment. The association also produces a bi-monthly newsletter and annual report featuring the latest developments and progress within the WEW community. WEW began in West New Britain but has since expanded to other sites. Financial literacy training for smallholders and landowner groups
NBPOL has established a ‘train the trainer’ programme to empower smallholders and landowner groups across five of our estates. This covers practical issues such as intercropping and good agricultural practices. The programme also focuses on financial literacy such as budgeting, financial planning, sound financial management and banking. We have made financial literacy manuals available in both English and Pidgin. NBPOL also helps open personal bank accounts for interested ILG members.
See NBPOL Stories for more community outreach programmes and updates