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HONOLULU, Hawaii (August 17, 1998 - PIDP/CPIS/Hulsen)---The Pan-Pacific and Southeast Asia Women's Association, which began in Hawaii at a pioneering 1928 conference on the status of women in the Pacific, will celebrate its seventieth anniversary this week.

At the same time, representatives from throughout the Pacific Islands region and Asia will participate in a three-day, August 20 -22 Honolulu seminar on the topic of "Families in a Changing World: In Pursuit of Healing, Health and Wholeness."

The regional non-government organization's Hawaii Chapter Third Vice President, Diana Lockwood, said about 60 delegates will give in-depth consideration to the changing roles of women, men and children in the contemporary family and in society as a whole.

"Dramatic changes are occurring," she pointed out. "The Association's seminar will examine these challenges and seek regional resolutions to such family problems as substance abuse, poor nutrition, peer pressure on youth and even, in some cultures, excessive leisure time."

Among the seminar participants will be delegates from American Samoa, the Cook Islands, Fiji, Samoa and several Asian countries, including regional experts in the areas of social work and physical and mental health.

The seminar will conclude Saturday, August 22, with a luncheon address on the conference theme by the Honorary President of the Pan-Pacific and Southeast Asia Women's Association International, Thanpuying Sumalee Chartikavanij of Thailand.

Organizer of the luncheon, Hawaii First Co-Vice President Dr. Sarah Vann, said the Association currently has nineteen autonomous national member organizations, some of which have several local chapters.

The Hawaii chapter, she noted, deserves to take credit for its pioneering efforts in formally establishing an organized Asia-Pacific women's movement seventy years ago.

"It was the first women's group to be founded upon trans-cultural values," Dr. Vann noted, "with representation from 11 Pacific nations and territories, including the then Territory of Hawaii."

The August 20-22 seminar will include a welcoming reception for delegates August 20 at the Waikiki Aquarium followed, August 21-22, by four major seminar sessions and the anniversary luncheon at the Hawaiian Regent Hotel.

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