In 2021, the Philippines was identified as the deadliest country in Asia and 3rd in the world for environmental defenders, with women facing unique vulnerabilities and even graver threats. Women bear the burdens of environmental destruction when their homes and livelihoods, their sources of clean water, food and medicine are gravely affected or lost.
As part of its ongoing commitment to foster unity to foster unity in diversity throughout Indonesia the Menoken journey recently travelled to the districts of South-Central Timor, with the aim of strengthening networks, sharing ideas for the protection and preservation of the environment.
"Denik, stands for Made Cenik or the youngest Made, in short Denik" said Mbok Denik explaining the origin of her nickname. Ni Made Puriati was born in Mengwi, Bali, and came from a family of farmers and construction workers.
Panika, the headdress of the Higaonon women, symbolises a sacred responsibility to champion their cultural heritage. Not any Higaonon woman can wear the panika. She has to make the commitment, and be recognized as a conduit of continuing the Higaonon traditions. Pusaka pertains to precious resources, both tangible and intangible, that remains in the Higaonon’s ancestral territories.
In an area near the city of Soe, in South Central Timor Regency, East Nusa Tenggara, three indigenous tribes belong together in a circle called as the Tiga Batu Tungku community, which consists of the tribe Mollo, Amanuban, and Amantun. These three tribes are all part of a workgroup called as Kelompok Kerja OAT (Pokja OAT) or the A’taimamus Ama Organization. The history of how this workgroup is established is firstly driven by the presence of a mining operation in Mollo District that made the local community felt that they were being exploited by them in 1995.
In August 2018, a first Gender Responsive Activities Planning Workshop was conducted for a group of Partners. It was attended by 15 women and 4 men with varied experiences and knowledge on gender equity. This was followed by an assessment of livelihoods and landscapes using the Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (GESI)10 perspective.
The process was replicated in several locations where Samdhana has partners, Papua, West Papua, NTT and West Kalimantan. The assessment involved women champions and individuals who understand GESI problems specific to their local context.