On the morning of Monday 17 August, Her Majesty Queen Salote officially opened the 10th conference of the Pan-Pacific South East Asian Women's Association.
The theme of this year's conference was, ‘the role of women in preserving the cultural heritage of mankind’.
Each address on an aspect of this subject was followed by round-table discussions in groups. It was most interesting to hear the various views of the delegates, who came from the U.S.A., Hawaii, Western Samoa, Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Tonga, Japan and Taiwan China. The diversity of opinion was startling, coming as it did from delegates representing under-developed, medium, and over-developed countries.
Some of the questions discussed were: women's role in the home, in the community, and in the bringing of peace to the world; the needs of developing countries; the roles of the Food and Agriculture Organisation and the World Health Organisation; the effect of such instruments of change as the radio; art and culture as a bridge between the past and the future; the role of the mother, guardian of the race and of its heritage.
I feel that the discussions and interchange of opinions were of much value, and that we all gained a great deal from considering the central issue against such a wide background of differing human circumstances.