Islands Society Recognized as a “Top-Rated Nonprofit” for Second Consecutive Year – 11/12/2015

Hilton Head Island, South Carolina: Today, the Islands Society was recognized as a Top-Rated Nonprofit by GreatNonprofits, the leading national provider of user reviews about nonprofits. This year, the Islands Society was the only nonprofit on Hilton Head Island to receive the award. And, it was only one of ten in the entire state of South Carolina.

“On behalf of the Islands Society, I would like to say that we are truly honored to be recognized yet again as a Top-Rated Nonprofit by GreatNonprofits,” says Eddie Walsh, Founder and President of Islands Society. “In the end, this award would not have been possible without the support of our donors, the talent of our staff, and the achievements of all the people that our organization serves.”

GreatNonprofits remains the leading platform for community-sourced stories and reviews about nonprofit organizations. Its Top-Rated awards is hailed as the only people’s choice award in the nonprofit sector.

According to a study by Software Advice, “The GreatNonprofits seal is the second most trusted rating seal, after the Better Business Bureau.”

About the Islands Society

The Islands Society is an international 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Its mission is to inspire and empower islanders to participate in foreign affairs and overseas engagements in order to affect positive change in their local communities. The nonprofit develops and implements projects that are designed to help islanders realize their full potential on the world stage. These projects are currently organized around two main themes: community projects and next generation leaders. The community projects center on ten issue areas, including charity, conservation, democracy, disaster relief, education, equality, health, innovation, security, and sustainability. Meanwhile, the next generation leader projects support artists, athletes, chefs, incubators, musicians, policymakers, storytellers, and technologists. To implement these programs, the nonprofit has launched local constituent societies around the world. These include the Pacific Islands Society, Baltic Islands Society, Sea Islands Society, Arctic Islands Society, Caribbean Islands Society, and Remote Islands Society (Japan).

Website: www.islandssociety.org
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/The-Islands-Society/
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/islandssociety

Image Credit: Presidio of Monterey via Flickr CC

Dalton Kuen-da Lin (Princeton-Harvard China and the World Programs) Named 2015 Winner of Islands Society’s “Security Threats in the Pacific Essay Contest” – 11/12/2015

Essays from Fiji, New Zealand, Taiwan, and Tonga selected as finalists in essay competition for young scholars

Today, the Islands Society announced that essays by five young scholars on Asia-Pacific security have been selected as the top submissions to this year’s “Security Threats in the Pacific Essay Contest.” These essays will now be featured on the think tank’s website alongside commentary from senior thought leaders on foreign policy and insular affairs.

This summer, the Islands Society issued an open call to young scholars across the region to submit opinion pieces on a contemporary security challenge facing the region. Specifically, young scholars were asked to answer: “What is the biggest security threat facing Pacific Islanders today?”

The Islands Society is proud to present responses to this question from the following young scholars (in no particular order): Melania Baba (Fiji,) Tevita Motulalo (Tonga), Adi Litia Cakobau Nailatikau (Fiji), Dalton Kuen-da Lin (Taiwan), and Genevieve Neilson (New Zealand / United States). The selection committee is also proud to announce that the essay by Dalton Kuen-da Lin was selected as the winner of the essay competition.

Below is a brief outline of the selected essays:

All of the selected essays will appear on the official blog of the Islands Society, The Islander, later this week.

About the Islands Society

The Islands Society is an international 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Its mission is to inspire and empower islanders to participate in foreign affairs and overseas engagements in order to affect positive change in their local communities. The nonprofit develops and implements projects that are designed to help islanders realize their full potential on the world stage. These projects are currently organized around two main themes: community projects and next generation leaders. The community projects center on ten issue areas, including charity, conservation, democracy, disaster relief, education, equality, health, innovation, security, and sustainability. Meanwhile, the next generation leader projects support artists, athletes, chefs, incubators, musicians, policymakers, storytellers, and technologists. To implement these programs, the nonprofit has launched local constituent societies around the world. These include the Pacific Islands Society, Baltic Islands Society, Sea Islands Society, Arctic Islands Society, Caribbean Islands Society, and Remote Islands Society (Japan).

Website: www.islandssociety.org
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/The-Islands-Society/
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/islandssociety

Islands Society Recognizes Kaua’i Forest Bird Recovery Project Leader as a “Local Female Leader” – 10/08/15

Dr. Lisa Crampton becomes the first woman from the Outer Islands of Hawai’i to be selected for the nonprofit’s female leadership recognition program

Kapaa, Hawaii – Oct. 8, 2015 — Today, the Islands Society announced that it had selected Dr. Lisa Crampton as its “Local Female Leader” for November, 2015. Dr. Crampton received the award for her long-standing commitment to conserving endangered birds in Kaua’i, Hawai’i.

In her current role as the Project Leader for the Kaua’i Forest Bird Recovery Project, Dr. Crampton leads research, conservation and outreach efforts to protect the fast declining population of indigenous birds on the island.

“Don’t assume that you can’t do certain things because you haven’t tried it before, and especially if you think you can’t do it because a man can do it better,” advises Dr. Crampton. “It’s important to have a diverse skill set. Knowledge is important but skills are also important. When you’re going through your education, think about not only what content you’re going to learn about, but also what you’re going to learn as far as skills, especially problem solving skills and critical skills.”

“Lisa’s success as an accomplished academic and leading expert in conservation is exemplary for girls and women,” says Keiko Ono, Managing Director for the Local Female Leaders Program. “To make an impact at scale, girls and women need to build their leadership capacities in a variety of ways. Her story reminds us that girls and women often need more than subject matter expertise to realize their full potential. They must also obtain specific skills to be able to successfully develop and implement large-scale projects in their local communities and beyond.”

Dr. Crampton`s lifelong dedication to promoting biodiversity and her efforts to protect unique ecosystems in Kaua’i have already made an impact on individuals as far away as Austria, India and Bulgaria.

About Lisa Crampton

Dr. Lisa Crampton currently heads the Kaua’i Forest Birds Recovery Project which aims to promote knowledge, appreciation, and conservation of Kauai’s native forest birds. Prior to her work in Hawai’i, Dr. Crampton oversaw large-scale monitoring and research projects in conservation. Dr. Campton received her B.Sc. in Biology (Honors) from the University of Victoria, British Columbia and her M.Sc. in Ecology from the University of Calgary, Alberta before completing her Ph.D. in Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Biology at the University of Nevada, Reno in 2004.

Full Interview: http://islandssociety.org/projects/global-projects/local-female-leaders/november-2015-lisa-crampton/

Profile: http://kauaiforestbirds.org/about-us/staff/

About the Local Female Leaders Program

Through the Local Female Leaders Program, the Islands Society recognizes females from around the world who are thought leaders in their local communities. Under the program, the Islands Society selects a local female leader from a different island community each month. That local female leader is then provided the opportunity to share her insights on how the health and well-being of girls and women can be improved in her own community based on her own life experiences.

Website: http://islandssociety.org/projects/global-projects/local-female-leaders/

About the Islands Society

The Islands Society is an independent, non-partisan, non-governmental organization that develops and implements projects that inspire and empower islanders around the world. These projects are currently organized around two main themes: community projects and next generation leaders. The community projects centre on ten issue areas, including charity, conservation, democracy, disaster relief, education, equality, health, innovation, security, and sustainability. Meanwhile, the next generation leader projects support artists, athletes, chefs, incubators, musicians, policy makers, storytellers, and technologists. The Islands Society is based on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.

Website: http://www.islandssociety.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/IslandsSociety

About the Pacific Islands Society (PacSoc)

The Pacific Islands Society is a constituent society of the Islands Society. Its mission is to respect, inspire, and empower Pacific Islanders around the world, especially women and the next generation of leaders. PacSoc is the oldest and most active of the Islands Society’s constituent societies. It currently runs a number of high-profile programs, including NexGen Pacific Artists, Pacific Security Scholars, and Pacific Young Leaders on Disarmament. The society also has almost 4,000 followers on Facebook. The Pacific Islands Society is based on Oahu, Hawaii.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PacificIslandsSociety

About the Kaua’i Forest Bird Recovery Project

The Kaua’i Forest Bird Recovery Project is a State of Hawai’i Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) program facilitated by the Pacific Studies Cooperative Unit of the University of Hawai’i. It is funded and supported by numerous partners including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, DOFAW, and several other organizations and individuals. The Kaua’i Forest Bird Recovery Project is committed to promoting knowledge, appreciation, and conservation of Kaua’i’s native forest birds, all of which are unique to Hawai’i; several are endemic to (found only on) Kaua’i.

Website: http://kauaiforestbirds.org/

Islands Society Making Waves with Members of Congress – 10/05/15

Honolulu, Hawaii — Congresswoman Aumua Amata (American Samoa) has issued a press release in which she “applauds” the Islands Society for its work to inspire and empower islanders in Hawaii, the U.S. Pacific territories, and Compact of Free Association countries to participate in foreign affairs and overseas engagement. Specifically, she recognized the nonprofit’s efforts to increase the involvement of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in American foreign policy and public diplomacy.

“I am always encouraged whenever I learn of new organizations whose mission is to help promote and assist Pacific Islanders in achieving their goals,” said Amata. “It is the work of these organizations that has helped many of our people reach higher and do more than they ever thought possible, and I encourage our young people to get involved and take advantage of the opportunities that groups like the Islands Society provide.”

“As we move forward into the 21st Century and the world grows smaller through technology, we must make sure that our young people have the tools and opportunities that will help propel them into leadership positions and the knowledge necessary to compete on a global scale. The Islands Society is another valuable asset that can help empower our people and I want to thank them for the hard work they do,” added Amata.

Over the last two years, the Islands Society has worked hard to establish itself as one of the leading organizations working to engage Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders as active participants in foreign affairs. Much of this work has been undertaken by the Pacific Islands Society – the nonprofit’s constituent society based in Honolulu, Hawaii. In fact, Congresswoman Aumua’s remarks represent the latest in a series of endorsements of the Pacific Islands Society by senior policymakers and young leaders on foreign policy.

“We are very grateful and honored to have the continued support from members of Congress,” says Keiko Ono, Managing Director of the Pacific Islands Society. “We believe the ongoing support from political leaders from American Samoa and beyond will help us to conduct community diplomacy through wider and more inclusive strategic dialogues with island communities. We therefore truly appreciate the public support of members of Congress – particularly those from Hawaii and the U.S. Pacific territories. They affirm that we are continuing to make progress towards our goal of ensuring that all islanders have the opportunity to realize their full potential on the world stage.”

More Information

To read Congresswoman Amata’s publc statement in full, see her website. To learn more about the Islands Society, see our website.

About the Islands Society

The Islands Society is an international 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Its mission is to inspire and empower islanders to participate in foreign affairs and overseas engagements in order to affect positive change in their local communities. The nonprofit develops and implements projects that are designed to help islanders realize their full potential on the world stage. These projects are currently organized around two main themes: community projects and next generation leaders. The community projects center on ten issue areas, including charity, conservation, democracy, disaster relief, education, equality, health, innovation, security, and sustainability. Meanwhile, the next generation leader projects support artists, athletes, chefs, incubators, musicians, policymakers, storytellers, and technologists. To implement these programs, the nonprofit has launched local constituent societies around the world. These include the Pacific Islands Society, Baltic Islands Society, Sea Islands Society, Arctic Islands Society, Caribbean Islands Society, and East Asian Islands Society.

About the Pacific Islands Society (PacSoc)

The Pacific Islands Society is the oldest and most active of the Islands Society’s constituent societies. Its mission is to inspire and empower islanders to participate in foreign affairs and overseas engagements in order to affect positive change in their local communities.To fulfill its mission, PacSoc has developed and implemented a number of high-profile community and next generation programs for women, minorities, and the next generation of leaders. These include Local Female Leaders in the Pacific, Pacific Next Generation Artists, Pacific Security Scholars, and Pacific Young Leaders on Disarmament. The society has also attracted a strong community of supporters. At present, its Facebook page is followed by almost 4,000 users from across the Pacific and beyond.

Pacific Islands Society’s Inaugural Nexgen Artist Invited by Top Think Tank for Emerging Leaders Panel Discussion – 09/21/15

Jeffry Feeger, an inaugural participant of the Pacific Islands Society’s Next Generation (NexGen) Artists Program joins young leaders in panel discussion commemorating Papua New Guinea’s 40th Independance

To commemorate the Papua New Guinea’s 40th Independence celebrations last week, Australia’s premiere think tank, the Lowy Institute, invited young leaders from Papua New Guinea to share their thoughts on the past and future of their country. Jeffry Feeger, leading Papua New Guinean artist and inaugural member of the Pacific Islands Society’s Next Generation Artists Program, was selected to join fellow youth committed to creating a positive future in their communities and the country at large.

With over 10 years experience as an independent visual and performance artist, Mr. Feeger has used his love of the creative arts to contribute to local communities through philanthropy and social activism. As an artist, Mr. Feeger has brought Papua New Guinean art to the fore of international exhibitions and through his widely acclaimed live performance painting. With a passion for fostering creativity, Jeffry has championed the need to promote artists and highlights the role creativity plays in the growth and development of Papua New Guinea. Through various collaborative community works, Jeffry continues to push the boundaries of contemporary arts in the Pacific, while leading domestic and international conversations on the social and political concerns of our time.

About the Islands Society
The Islands Society is an independent, non-partisan, non-governmental organization that develops and implements projects that inspire and empower islanders around the world. These projects are currently organized around two main themes: community projects and next generation leaders. The community projects centre on ten issue areas, including charity, conservation, democracy, disaster relief, education, equality, health, innovation, security, and sustainability. Meanwhile, the next generation leader projects support artists, athletes, chefs, incubators, musicians, policymakers, storytellers, and technologists.

About the Pacific Islands Society (PacSoc)
The Pacific Islands Society is a constituent society of the Islands Society. Its mission is to respect, inspire, and empower Pacific Islanders around the world, especially women and the next generation of leaders. PacSoc is the oldest and most active of the Islands Society’s constituent societies. It currently runs a number of high-profile programs, including NexGen Pacific Artists, Pacific Security Scholars, and Pacific Young Leaders on Disarmament. The society also has almost 4,000 followers on Facebook.

About the 2016 Pacific Next Generation Artists Program
Through the Pacific Next Generation (NexGen) Artists Program, the Pacific Islands Society (PacSoc) provides talented young artists from regional island communities who are online members of the Pacific Islands Society with a global stage to showcase their talents. Pacific NexGen Artists will be given their own virtual gallery on the PacSoc website as well as marketing and communications support to create global awareness for their art works. They will also be provided the opportunity to publish articles and blog posts to build their brand.

Website: http://islandssociety.org/projects/next-generation-leaders/next-generation-artists/

Testimonial: http://islandssociety.org/testimonials/jeffry-feeger-papua-new-guinea/

2016 NexGen Artist Program: http://islandssociety.org/projects/next-generation-leaders/next-generation-artists/future-nexgen-artists-programs/2014-2015-nexgen-artists/

2014 NexGen Artist Program: http://islandssociety.org/projects/next-generation-leaders/next-generation-artists/2013-2014-nexgen-artists/

The Lowy Institute
The Lowy Institute is an independent, nonpartisan international policy think tank located in Sydney, Australia. Ranked as Australia’s leading think tank, it provides high – quality research and distinctive perspectives on the international trends shaping Australia and the world.

The full podcast of the panel discussion can be heard here.

Islands Society Recognizes President of Leading Hawaiian Non-profit as a “Local Female Leader” – 09/14/15

Honolulu, Hawaii — September 14, 2015 — Today, the Islands Society announced that it has selected Nicole Forrester as its “Local Female Leader” for September 2015. Forrester was given the award for her efforts to promote the health and well-being of the next generation of Pacific Islanders through partnerships in education.

As the current President and CEO of the Pacific Resources for Education Learning (PREL), Nicole Forrester joins a growing network of Local Female Leaders leading positive change in island communities.

“We welcome Ms. Forrester as a Local Female Leader,” says Keiko Ono, Managing Director of the Local Female Leaders (LFL) Project. “We are excited to share her perspectives on how we can improve the health and well-being of women in island communities. And, we know that she can serve as an inspiration for girls across the Pacific Islands.”

“Women bring great value to all work environments – be they for profit or not,” says Forrester. “This fact has been accepted in the education and community development sectors for some time now. As a female leader, I bring different perspectives, analysis, and ways of knowing to the organization and our stakeholders. I’ve been encouraged that, for the most part, co-creation, inclusive and consultative approaches (which some would argue as being feminine strengths) are accepted as being more than just ‘process’ now. Rather, they are seen as an integral means to delivering positive impacts alongside community partners. For sustainable development to occur, organizations must support communities to drive their own change. That means as agents of change, non-profit leaders (regardless of gender) must listen more than we speak.”

About Nicole Forrester

Nicole Forrester is the President and CEO of Pacific Resources for Education and Learning (PREL), where she is working hard to enhance community well-being in the Pacific Islands through partnerships in education. Prior to this role, she directed the Young Leaders Program at Pacific Forum Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and served as consul for economic and political affairs at the Australian Consulate-General in Los Angeles. Thereafter, she was awarded the East-West Center’s Asia-Pacific Leadership Program Fellowship and the Amanda and Natalie Ellis Women Leaders Scholarship Award.

About the Local Female Leaders Program

Through the Local Female Leaders Program, the Islands Society recognizes females from around the world who are thought leaders in their local communities. Under the program, the Islands Society selects a local female leader from a different island community each month. That local female leader is then provided the opportunity to share her insights on how the health and well-being of girls and women can be improved in her own community based on her own life experiences.

About the Islands Society

The Islands Society is an independent, non-partisan, non-governmental organization that develops and implements projects that inspire and empower islanders around the world. These projects are currently organized around two main themes: community projects and next generation leaders. The community projects centre on ten issue areas, including charity, conservation, democracy, disaster relief, education, equality, health, innovation, security, and sustainability. Meanwhile, the next generation leader projects support artists, athletes, chefs, incubators, musicians, policymakers, storytellers, and technologists.

About the Pacific Islands Society (PacSoc)

The Pacific Islands Society is a constituent society of the Islands Society. Its mission is to respect, inspire, and empower Pacific Islanders around the world, especially women and the next generation of leaders. PacSoc is the oldest and most active of the Islands Society’s constituent societies. It currently runs a number of high-profile programs, including NexGen Pacific Artists, Pacific Security Scholars, and Pacific Young Leaders on Disarmament. The society also has almost 4,000 followers on Facebook.

About the Pacific Resources for Education and Learning (PREL)

PREL is an independent, nonprofit organization with staff in Hawai’i, American Sāmoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Republic of Palau, and the Federated States of Micronesia: Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei, and Yap. Throughout the Pacific, PREL collaborates with schools, agencies, and communities to transform schooling and promote dynamic reciprocal learning communities built on strong social and cultural capital.

Islands Society Recognizes Soloman Islander as Inaugural “Local Female Leader” – 08/06/15

Honiara, Solomon Islands — August 7, 2015 — Yesterday, the Islands Society announced that it had selected Millicent Barty as a Local Female Leader. Barty was given the award for her efforts to combat illiteracy in the Solomon Islands through Art and Design.

“My goal in life is to bring about change in my country by bridging social cleavages through design,” says Barty. “A majority of my people here in the Solomon Islands are illiterate. With over 82 different dialects across 900 islands, communication is a major barrier for us. I believe that knowledge and information is key. We cannot limit an individual from acquiring knowledge or information because of their literacy level. Design provides a critical tool for helping everyone to be able to understand complex information. Through infographics, we can overcome many of the limitations imposed by illiteracy.”

Through the Local Female Leaders Program, the Islands Society recognizes females from around the world who are thought leaders in their local communities. Under the program, the Islands Society selects a local female leader from a different island community each month. That local female leader is then provided the opportunity to share her insights on how the health and well-being of girls and women can be improved in her own community based on her own life experiences.

About the Islands Society

The Islands Society is an independent, non-partisan, non-governmental organization that develops and implements projects that inspire and empower islanders around the world. These projects are currently organized around two main themes: community projects and next generation leaders. The community projects center on nine issue areas, including charity, conservation, democracy, disaster relief, education, equality, health, innovation, and sustainability. Meanwhile, the next generation leader projects support artists, athletes, chefs, incubators, musicians, policymakers, storytellers, and technologists.

Website: www.islandssociety.org

Local Female Leaders: www.islandssociety.org/projects/causes/equality/emerging-female-leaders-in-the-pacific/

Millicent Barty Interview: www.islandssociety.org/projects/causes/equality/local-female-leaders/milli/