Watch: ‘Excellent legislation, what we need is practical infrastructure’ – President

President of Malta Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca observed that while Malta has excellent legislation on paper, there were instances when it lacked the practical infrastructure. The President was addressing a press conference on Friday during which the yacht, The Maiden was seen off to start with its world tour.

The Maiden Factor will be sailing around the world for approximately two years on the Maiden with an all female crew. The Maiden Factor was founded by Tracy Edwards, with the non-profit organisation working with and supporting a number of charities which fulfill criteria on women empowerment and education.

In her observation Coleiro Preca said that while human rights were on paper, mentioning education as a specific example, on the other hand Malta still lacked women being represented in decision making posts. The President remarked that there was political will to improve on the lack of representation and stressed on urging those in power to apply a practical infrastructure which would correct the lack of representation of women.

Coleiro Preca also spoke of the timing of the initiative saying it was the “right moment” given that recently the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was commemorated. She explained that goal four and five in the Sustainable Development Goals dealing with equality and education respectively were proof that we were yet to get to the point our forefathers saw. She then delved into statistics from around the world about the state of women speaking about education denied to girls, child marriages among others.

A spokesperson from the Maiden Factor explained that they aim to promote education for young girls and empower women across the world through their world tour. She described their stay in Malta as an ‘absolute pleasure’ and thanked the various entities who made it possible. The spokesperson described  the greeting they received on their arrival in Malta as ‘out of this world’ explaining that they were greeted by young boys and girls who showed interest in their work. She stressed that this was how one could change the future by getting the younger generations interested.

A spokesperson on behalf of the platform Empower and President of BPW – Malta also addressed the press conference.

‘Nervous but excited’ – Crew member

One of the five crew members on board the Maiden spoke to about the world tour. The crew member joined Maiden in July, and described herself as born for sailing. She then explained the story behind the Maiden, saying that Tracy Edwards rescued the ship for Seychelles. Asked if there was a favourite charity project among six partner charities, she said it was difficult for her to choose. She explained that the charities have girls education as their main priority with various charities, some focus on water availability whilst others like The Orchid Project aims to end female genital mutilation. She described the upcoming journey as a dream and she felt nervous and very excited at the same time. Their next stop will be India, to which she replied that having never been to India she was looking forward to visiting.