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Hermawati – Island Pulau Burung of South Kalimantan, Indonesia

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Hermawati (born 1956) is a volunteer teacher in the tiny island Pulau Burung off South Kalimantan, Indonesia. This 49-year-old mother of three children has been providing free schooling for the island’s poor children for 15 years, despite lacking proper education herself, using her own meager financial resources to build a modest school building and purchase learning materials. Her efforts have encouraged more parents to send their children to school.Neither a prestigious university graduate nor a genius is needed to give children a small taste of education. Hermawati, of the tiny and impoverished Pulau Burung Island off the South Kalimantan coast in Indonesia, is proof of that.

Academically, … Hermawati does not qualify as a teacher. She only has a Sekolah Rakyat degree, equivalent to elementary school, which provided her only with basic reading and writing skills. Nonetheless, she has dedicated the last 15 years to teaching children on the island, and all for free. She even built her own school building, with a thatch roof, wooden walls and earthen floor. That was in 1993.

SD Tunas Nelayan is the first school ever on the island. Before then, children had to travel 30 minutes by rowboat to the mainland. For speedier travel by motorboat, they had to pay more. Most of Pulau Burung residents are traditional fishermen. Due to poverty, most parents on the island did not send their children to school in the mainland. The children spent their days playing or helping their parents with minor fishery tasks. Consequently, most children in Pulau Burung were illiterate … She says: “Our dream is simple: that children can read and write. That is all I can do for them” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Hermawati – of Island Pulau Burung of South Kalimantan, Indonesia …

… (sorry, my photo upload software doesn’t work anymore, no more NEW pictures are possible, only allready published ones out of an existing file … and my famous software Ingeneer, having built up all this beautiful blog construction, is death by lung cancer … peace and eternal gratitude to his beautiful soul … ).

Hermawati works for SD Tunas Nelayan (named in a list on NISN /Rekap Data).

(1000peacewomen 2/2):  … “I felt sorry to see the children unable to read and write,” Hermawati says. ”

So I thought it might help if we could just set up a school here. A modest one would do, so that the children could at least get a basic education.

She began her crusade in 1991, when she started giving basic reading and writing lessons to the children. Her classroom was a small wooden house she built with the help of her neighbors, using materials donated by a government organization. She named her elementary school Tunas Nelayan, which means the hope of fishermen. She did not charge any fees because she knew it would only prevent parents from sending their children to her school. She even provided the learning materials. The parents only had to spend for the children’s writing books.

Her makeshift classroom quickly disassembled, however, so Hermawati had to find ways to build a new one. In 1993, she collected all her family’s savings and rebuilt her school. Hermawati’s family is not rich, although they are better off compared to the other Pulau Burung residents. At that time, her husband worked as a laborer at a timber plantation.

She finally managed to rebuild the school, in her backyard, a modest 18-square meter three room house made with wooden walls, a thatch roof and floor. Since Hermawati was not academically trained and she knew only basic reading and writing skills, she improvised the curriculum. In order to improve her reading and writing, she attended the government’s illiteracy eradication “Paket B” program. A few dozen children on the island now attend her school, which accepts students from the first to the fifth grade. Sixth-grade students have to continue their studies in an Islamic elementary school on the mainland. Public elementary schools refuse to accept Hermawati’s students, citing the inadequacy of her curriculum.

In the early years, Hermawati taught the children all by herself. She handled students from the first to the fifth grade, in one class after the other, allocating two hours for each class. She taught from morning to late afternoon, making her husband very unhappy about her schedule. He worried that Hermawati did not have enough time to take care of their three children. He often got angry when Hermawati was not around to serve him when he returned home from work.

“I did not dare argue with him,” she says. “But when he cooled down, I would calmly ask him to understand that what I did was important to help give children a better future and that he would be proud to see the fruit of my works in the time to come.” In 2000, Hermawati’s eldest son, Parhansyah, began to help her teach. “I felt sorry for mother, she had worked so hard to teach the children without any help,” he says. He completed junior high school in the Islamic school on the mainland.  Continue Reading…

Pung Chhiv Kek Galabru – Cambodia

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Linked with Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights LICADHO.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Kek Galabru (born 1942) is one of Cambodia’s foremost defenders of human rights. After studying medicine in France and practicing it while following her diplomat husband to various posts abroad, she became instrumental in achieving political peace in her country. In 1992, she founded the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights (Licadho), which she heads at great personal risk. Licadho educates the people on their democratic rights and provides defense in court for victims of torture, domestic violence and police attacks. Kek Galabru looks like a queen, slim and erect in her long blue silk dress. In fact, her parents, both teachers and later government ministers, were friends of the royal family.This enabled her to play a key role in opening negotiations between Cambodia’s Prime Minster Hun Sen and opposition leader Prince Sihanouk, which led to the Paris Peace Accords of 1991 … She says: “Courage means to brave intimidation in order to do something for the people” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Pung Chhiv Kek Galabru – Cambodia

She works for the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights LICADHO.

… “An official from the Council of Ministers recently said that a new draft law allowing foreigners to own Khmer land will be sent to the National Assembly to be deliberated and adopted in the near future. “The draft law, which is known to have been initiated to satisfy the goal of wealthy foreigners, especially Chinese and Yuon [Vietnamese], is receiving strong reactions from civil society and from Khmer people. “Ms. Pung Chhiv Kek [Dr. Kek Galabru], president of the local human rights organization Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights, said that nowadays, land issues in Cambodia are moving towards a crisis; if the law permits foreigners to own Khmer land, it would cause a situation of double deprivation. “Based on the Cambodian constitution, foreigner shall not have the right to own a house or a building, and they shall not have the right to own a plot of land in Cambodia, this right is only for those who hold Khmer citizenship. If the new draft law is adopted, it would be a surprise and very terrifying for the future of Cambodia. Parts of Cambodian land would be lost to foreigners for money … (full text, 14 February 2008).

Find her on Google Book-search.

1000peacewomen 2/2: … But Dr. Galabru is mainly dedicated to grassroots work. The Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights, better known as Licadho, which she founded in 1992 and continues to direct, has offices in half of Cambodia’s provinces, with 1,000 mostly volunteers as collaborators.

Its first self-given task is to educate people to vote freely, disregarding the threats of the ruling party. One of its main activities is to represent victims of domestic or police violence (mainly women, children, opposition leaders, teachers, social workers and members of NGOs) in court where it has won about a third of its cases.

It also fights the massive illegal logging condoned by the corrupt government and the army. Above all, it teaches people their rights through classes, comic books, TV and radio programs and theater productions. As Dr. Galabru says, “The mere fact of our presence makes a difference.” And she keeps fighting in spite of serious threats against her person and a brutal attack on one of her two daughters engaged in the same causes.

Her definition of courage is, “To do something for the people inspite of the intimidation.” No wonder the taxi-driver had no problem finding her modest office in Phnom Penh: Everybody in Cambodia knows Licadho. (on 1000peacewomen).

Beside being cited for the Nobel Prize nomination, no more articles found in english about our peacewomen.

Articles about Human Rights in Cambodia:

Human rights in Cambodia – on wikipedia: The human rights situation in Cambodia is facing growing criticisms both within the country and an increasingly alarmed international community. After a series of flagrant violation against basic human rights a feeling of incertitude regarding the direction the country is emerging, sometimes comparing the situation to a new-born Burma.
In its 2004 report on Cambodia, Human Rights Watch stated that “Authorities continue to ban or disperse most public demonstrations. Politicians and journalists critical of the government face violence and intimidation and are barred from equal access to the broadcast media. In addition, the judiciary remains weak and subject to political influence. Trafficking of women and children for sexual exploitation through networks protected or backed by police or government officials is rampant. The government continues to turn a blind eye to fraudulent confiscation of farmers’ land, illegal logging, and widespread plundering of natural resources.” The current state of the country could be described as a semblance of pluralistic democracy.
In July 2004, the royalist opposition party FUNCINPEC formed a coalition government with the Cambodian People Party (CPP) after a political deadlock of more than a year. More recently, Sam Rainsy Party (SRP) members have been targeted for criminal prosecutions, after seeing the parliamentarian immunity of several SRP member lifted by a criticized closed-door hand vote with members of the parliament … (full text).

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Shyamala Natarajan – India

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

When Shyamala Natarajan (born 1963) started working on HIV/AIDS and related issues 16 years ago, the stigma surrounding the disease was appalling. She had to fight opposition from her family to set up the South India AIDS Action Program SIAAP. Through her work, Shyamala has been reaching out to sex workers, sexual minorities, such as men having sex with men MSM and eunuchs. She is involved in building capacities of community-based organizations to take up the issue of HIV/AIDS and campaigning on HIV prevention. Shyamala is also actively involved with organizing sex workers, and believes strongly in community-based (as opposed to forced governmental) rehabilitation. Over the years, she has created space to make discussions on HIV/AIDS possible … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

Over the years, Shyamala has created space to make discussions on HIV/Aids possible, and brought about a whole slew of government policy changes.

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Sorry, no photo found for Shyamala Natarajan, India.

She works for the South India Aids Action Program SIAAP.

… The conference inauguration, with speakers from Brazil, Africa and Australia, provided a business-like start and then Shyamala Natarajan, head of the South India Aids Programme, got to her feet. She started to complain about the shortage of free condoms. This sparked further protests from students who began shouting slogans demanding regular free condom distribution. They circulated a press release to all the delegates saying that condom distribution had been cut so much that some HIV prevention work in Tamil Nadu had been halted altogether. It was estimated that the state needed between three and five million condoms a month while only 500,000 had been offered to HIV projects. Now, they claimed, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare was asking projects to charge people for the condoms they were given … (full text).

… In her inaugural address, Ms. Shyamala Natarajan, programme director, South India AIDS Action Programme, departed from the usual. List the qualities that you find in your best friend, she asked them. Respect for one another, honesty and support were some of the answers the children gave. Look for these in a relationship too later in life, she said, and stay away from trouble … (full text).

1000peacewomen 1/2: Lobbying with the government on this issue, she has brought about many changes in government policy. For example:

  • In 1990, the Government of Tamil Nadu (GoTN) framed a policy against detention of persons testing HIV+; in 1992, the Government of India (GoI) also adopted this policy.
  • In 1994, the health and family welfare department, GoI, adopted a policy to improve condom quality.
  • In 1996, the National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) adopted a policy against mandatory testing for HIV.
  • In 1995, the GoTN adopted a policy to include HIV+ persons in decision-making. Later, the NACO also accepted this principle.
  • In 1996, the Tamil Nadu Panchayat Unions adopted a policy to support the rights of women in sex work.
  • In 2000, the NACO adopted a policy to provide counseling services for reproductive health in government hospitals.
  • In 2003, the NACO adopted a policy to train and place counselors drawn from communities of people marginalized on the basis of sexuality, gender, and HIV.

Shyamala’s work has influenced and inspired many individuals and organizations. Usha, formerly a sex worker, is a case in point: after her association with Shyamala and SIAAP, Usha started WATT, an organization that works on the same issues. (on 1000peacewomen).

… The names of Shyamala Natarajan, Saraswathi and Krishna Jagannathan were announced by the NGO Wednesday. The three women figure in a list of 1,000 women from 150 countries, whose names have been submitted to the Nobel Prize Committee. Natarajan is a journalist in her late 40s and is the founder director of South India AIDS Action. She has been working with HIV- positive and AIDS-affected people for more than a decade. Saraswathi, hailing from Chennai, works with campaigns to eliminate caste discriminations. Jagannathan is an environmentalist and works for women’s issues. She belongs to Nagapattinam district, which was hit badly by the December tsunami disaster … (full text).

Many persons with the same name exist in the web, not being our peacewomen.

links:

The tale of two women, March 24, 2007;

Introduction – Milestones in the Understanding of HIV/AIDS Mother-to-Child Transmission in India, by Patrice Cohen, GRIS, University of Rouen, France, French Institute of Pondicherry, 9 pdf pages;

The Google download book: Emancipation and empowerment of women, By V. Mohini Giri, 1998, 354 pages.

Anna Hoare Sr. – England

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Linked with The Lagan College.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Sister Anna Hoare has been working for peace all her life. Her major achievement was the creation of the first Protestant and Catholic integrated school, Lagan College, in Northern Ireland. Today there are over 50 integrated schools in Northern Ireland, with a total student body of over 12,000. Her work has been a beacon to the communities she has directly served and an exemplum of what is possible in one of the most unstable and violent regions. In 2003 at the age of eighty-six Sister Anna Hoare returned to live with ‘The Community of the Sisters of the Love of God’ in their convent in Oxford. Her residence there, in one of England’s most famous university towns, could not be more different from her last abode: a small house situated in the middle of the conflict zone in Northern Ireland, where she served for thirty-one years. It is difficult to distinguish where her religious duties end and where her activism begins – so finely intertwined as they are … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

She says: … “We all share a common humanity that enables us to live and work together”.

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Sorry, no photo found for Anna Hoare Sr. – England

She works for the Community of the Sisters of the Love of God (find them also on wikipedia), and for the Lagan College.

1000peacewomen 2/2: … What Sr Anna Hoare achieved in Northern Ireland was radical in its intent and has had far reaching consequences that perhaps even she, at the time she began her work, could not have envisaged. In a region that has been torn apart by sectarian hatred and violence her work has helped to get Protestants and Catholics closer to understanding and coexistence.

Anna Hoare was born in Bath, England in 1917, one year before the World War I ended. After her schooling and obtaining a first degree she moved to Oxford where she completed her M.A. in Theology. From 1943-1948 she was based at Wistow Training Center where, with Gunter Schweitzer, she provided ecumenical training to refugees from Nazi Germany. There, she lectured on Old Testament Studies and early Christianity.

For the Nazis, any trace of Jewish ancestry was sufficient proof of ‘Jewishness’ and hence, impurity. The trainees at Wistow were German Christians, many of whom were oblivious to the Jewish identity of their forbears. They considered themselves, above all, to be German and many planned to return to Germany and help in its reconstruction.

After her time at Wistow Anna Hoare lived as a recluse, then as a pilgrim. In 1970 she received her calling and on 16th November of that year she was confessed. ‘God pushed me to take my vows,’ she says. She attempted to live in her Order’s community but strongly felt that her calling was to be a pilgrim, living, as she says, ‘without any props.’ She adds that ‘I felt God was asking me to go out into the world with nothing and that He would lead me.’

The Order into which she had been confessed could not understand such a choice; it was then that she had the great fortune to meet and speak to the Mother Superior of the ‘Community of the Sisters of the Love of God.’ She received Episcopal permission from the Mother Superior to be actively engaged as a social worker.

During this period Sr Anna lived in Yugoslavia, Turkey, Israel, France and Greece, and in these years she learnt a range of languages. In 1972 Mother Teresa asked the ‘Community of the Sisters of the Love of God’ (hence, ‘Community’) to join her Order in Northern Ireland in their peace-building work. As the ‘Community’ is an enclosed contemplative society it could not accept Mother Teresa’s offer.

Sr Anna, however, who stood both within the ‘Community’ but beyond its covenant, accepted the behest of the Mother Superior. If the period in which Sr Anna worked with German refugees was an important watermark in her life, the second and perhaps most significant contribution she would make to peace efforts was her work in Northern Ireland.

When, in 1972, she moved to Belfast, Northern Ireland, it was the early years of ‘The Troubles’ – the increased violence that began in the late 60s and only came to an end in the 90s. As a result, the prevailing ‘ghettoization’ of Catholics and Protestants was exacerbated and the British Army was called onto the streets, an act which intensified yet hostility and violence. From 1968- 1994 over 3,5000 people died and over 35,000 were injured due to sectarian violence.

One of the most brutal periods in Ireland’s modern history was brought to an end by the peace process ‘which included the declaration of ceasefire by some paramilitary organizations, the withdrawal of most troops from the streets and the creation of a new police force in a series of reforms. This declaration is most notably known as the Belfast Agreement (commonly known as the Good Friday Agreement),’ says Sr Anna.

Throughout her life Sr. Anna’s leitmotif has been, ‘so that they are one.’ With this in mind, under the umbrella of an organization that she established – ‘Children’s Community Holidays’ – she initiated joint holidays for children from both confessions. As a result of this scheme up to one thousand school children every year spend their holidays in Northern Ireland. For many children this has been the first contact they ever had with children from other confessions. Following the success of this program she began another initiative, ‘All Children Together’ and from this was born, in 1981, the first integrated Protestant and Catholic school in Northern Ireland, Lagan College.

Continue Reading…

Joênia Batista de Carvalho – Brazil

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Linked with Update 76 – INDIGENOUS PEOPLES’ CENTRE … ; with A re-compilation of texts and blogs for indigenous peoples; with Articles for Indigenous Peoples on our blogs; with UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; with Indigenous Webs for Information; and with Texts about Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

(ENS) – Brazil’s first female indigenous lawyer makes her legal debut today in Washington, DC. Joenia Batista de Carvalho, 30, a Wapixana woman who is one of this year’s Reebok Human Rights awardees, is presenting her people’s land rights case to the InterAmerican Commission on Human Rights. On behalf of the Indigenous Council of Roraima, she will ask this branch of the Organization of American States to intervene in a landmark battle for ancestral indigenous land known as Raposa Serra do Sol. The Rainforest Foundation US is co-filing the petition with the Indigenous Council of Roraima. Batista’s work is fully supported by the U.S. branch of The Rainforest Foundation, a nonprofit organization based in New York City, London, and Oslo founded in 1989 by Sting and Trudie Styler … // … The Raposa Serra do Sol territory in Roraima state is home to the Macuxi, Patamona, Ingaricó, Wapichana, and Taurepang peoples … // … Joenia Batista de Carvalho is representing the Indigenous Council of Roraima before the InterAmerican Commission on Human Rights … (full long text).

ON all her official papers, she is known as Joênia Batista de Carvalho. But that is not the real name of the first Indian woman to become a lawyer in Brazil, just a name a clerk randomly selected when her parents were first brought from their Amazon village to have their births registered. Whether her preoccupation with issues of cultural identity and autonomy stems from that incident, Ms. Batista is not sure. Still, when she went to the United States earlier this year to receive a Reebok Prize for her human rights work, she chose to accept the award as Joênia Wapixana, using the name of the tribe to which she belongs. (full text).

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Joênia Batista de Carvalho – Brazil

Watch this video in portugese: Indigenous lawyer tells of fight for Amazon land on 11 Dec 08, 2.16 min, 10 December 2008.

She says: … “Peace, to us indigenous people, is living with dignity, quietly, with our families, in our community, in our land, free of threats, invasions, destruction, persecutions and death”. (1000peacewomen).

For the first time in the history of the Supreme Court, an indian rises to the podium to make oral arguments. The first is also by a woman, lawyer Joênia Batista de Carvalho of the Wapichana people. Pela primeira vez na história do Supremo, um índio sobe à tribuna para fazer uma sustentação oral. A estréia é de uma mulher: a advogada Joênia Batista de Carvalho, do povo Wapichana. (on dotsub.com).

She works for Conselho Indígena de Roraima CIR – named: on upr-info.org; on apontador; on WordPress.com.

She says also: … “We are accused of being thieves in our own land, of being invaders. We are slandered, we are discriminated against. This must come to an end”.
“It falls upon this Court to enforce what we’ve been hearing for a long time – that traditional indigenous lands go well beyond mere houses”.
“Many people do not know that indigenous lands cannot be characterised only by dwellings. They also include areas where people fish, hunt, walk, maintain sacred places, where we maintain spirituality, where our culture is maintained” … (full text, 10/11/2008).

Find her on RHR award; on Google Video-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Blog-search.

And she says: … “My grandmother couldn’t even speak Portuguese,” she recalls, but “my mother and most people of her generation speak very little Wapixana, which means that something got lost there” … and: “Your identity is on your face and in your hair, you can’t deny it,” Ms. Batista said. “I was the only Indian in my class, so of course I felt different. Plus, we had very little money, which meant I didn’t have proper clothes” … and: “From the time I was little, I was always rebellious, always making trouble, and I thought I could contribute more than I would working as a teacher” … (full text, November 13, 2004).

(1000peacewomen): Joênia Batista de Carvalho (1974) is part of the Wapicharas, an indigenous ethnic group. She was born in Roraima, a Brazilian state where indigenous rights still face great resistance to be recognized.

She was the first indigenous in the country to become a lawyer. She works at the Indigenous Council of Roraima and is mainly focused on indigenous territorial rights. She seeks for justice for victims of violations: death threats, persecutions, torture and racial discrimination.

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Esthi Susanti Hudiono – Indonesia

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Esthi Hudiono, from Surabaya, East Java, is a relentless campaigner on the issue of HIV/Aids. With her NGO, the Yayasan Hotline Surabaya, she has worked to raise public awareness of HIV/Aids issues, providing counseling for those infected, and campaigning for 15 years for comprehensive strategies for its prevention and cure. In 2004, she succeeded in lobbying the local government to endorse the law on HIV/Aids prevention and cure. East Java is Indonesia’s first province to have such a law … She works with the Yayasan Hotline Surabaya, a non-governmental organization, which she chairs. For the past 15 years, Esthi has been working to promote public awareness of HIV/AIDS issues. Yayasan Hotline establishes health clinics in brothel areas, reaching out to sex workers, empowering them and marginalized women with information, befriending the HIV/AIDS-positive patients and lobbying for direct involvement of government bodies, hospitals and schools in the campaign effort.
Esthi is a trained education counselor. Her passion is to contribute her knowledge to society. “As a counselor, I am trained to help individuals to solve their problems, to encourage them to make changes so they could live better. That is exactly what I like doing,” she says. However, Esthi learned through her previous work that her problem solving techniques were very often impractical because her clients’ problems were rooted not only within themselves but also in the system and the environment in which they live. “I could only console them, not solve their problems. It’s impossible to encourage them to adapt to the system when the system itself is flawed” … (1000peacewmen 1/2).

She says: … “There is a moral bias both in the community and among policy makers. They think people with HIV/Aids simply deserve the disease as a punishment for having disobeyed religious norms”. (1000peacewmen).

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Esthi Susanti Hudiono – Indonesia

She works for the Yayasan Hotline Surabaya.

Indonesia, challenges of synergising HIV/AIDS & Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. (SPOTLIGHT): An article from Arrows For Change, by Esthi Susanti Hudiono:

Adalah Esthi Susanti Hudiono. Membaca catatan kisah hidupnya dalam 15 tahun terakhir, seolah membuka catatan sejarah tentang perkembangan virus HIV/AIDS di Indonesia. Direktur Eksekutif Yayasan Hotline Surabaya ini merupakan generasi pertama aktivis HIV/AIDS di Indonesia. Ia bekerja dengan semangat yang terus membara, di tengah ancaman, kritikan, dan juga kehilangan sebagian materinya, demi menegakkan rasa kemanusiaan … (full text).

She says also: … “I thought this would be an easy job: just promote condoms, promote condoms face-to-face. Easy! Because people will be told about the risks, about sexually transmitted diseases like HIV and the others. It turns out we still haven’t succeeded” … (full text).

1000peacewmen 2/2: … When Esthi started to work on HIV/AIDS issues, she decided to focus on sex workers. “Though I personally do not agree with prostitution, it is not easy to just tell prostituted women to stop hooking, because they have families to support. Moreover, trying to quit means they have to face threats and physical abuse from their management,” she said. She thought that she could use her counseling skills to encourage sex workers to make changes in their sexual behaviors, such as using condoms and being aware of their reproductive health. She hoped that by altering their unsafe practices, sex workers would not be infected with HIV/AIDS or transmits the disease to others.

Esthi found that her efforts to promote HIV/AIDS prevention and cure were, again, hampered by problems hinged on a structural issue, the system. She came across HIV/AIDS issues by chance 15 years ago when Yayasan Hotline was invited to take part in a CDC/USAid research on HIV/AIDS in Surabaya. Surabaya is East Java’s capital city. It is notorious for its sex industry, which employs sex workers from the locality and other provinces. Surabaya’s position as a busy transportation hub and a favored destination of economic migrants has spurred the growth of the sex industry. No less than 20,000 prostitutes work in Surabaya’s five biggest authorized brothel compounds alone.

It was not the soaring prevalence of HIV/AIDS that provoked Esthi’s interest in the issue, but the lack of policies and actions that directly involved those who were at risk or were already infected with HIV/AIDS. Esthi and Yayasan Hotline use various methods, such as the outreach program, peer educator and community organizing, in their efforts to promote awareness of HIV/AIDS among sex workers in Surabaya. Early on, Esthi realized that focusing on the prostitutes’ sexual practices alone would neither slow down the HIV/AIDS transmission nor help the prostitutes themselves.

The popular condom-usage campaign, for example, might have taught sex workers the importance of using condoms to reduce the risk of getting infected with HIV/AIDS. However, in reality, sex workers continue to engage in unsafe sex because their clients refuse to use condoms. Sex workers, especially those working in brothels, do not dare to upset clients in order to avoid punishment from their bosses or protectors. But quitting the profession to avoid HIV/AIDS is an unfeasible option because sex workers are mostly poor or heavily indebted to their ‘management’.

Esthi then decided to change her strategy. She chose to work more directly with the sex workers and poor women prone to trafficking by offering them counseling, advocacy and empowerment programs. “There is an absolute need to pay more attention to the marginalized women and girls, especially those who live in poor villages,” she says. “They are very vulnerable and are easy targets of victimization. We should teach and empower them so that they are not easily lured into the sex industry through trafficking practices.”

Continue Reading…

Irma Schwager – Austria

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Linked with the Women’s International Democratic Federation WIDF.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Born in 1920 of politically active Jewish parents in Vienna, Irma Schwager fled to Belgium in 1938 and then to France. Detained in a camp, she escaped and joined the resistance movement. This experience led her to peace work. And the way that women are affected by wars made her an advocate for the independence of women and against structural violence. After Austria’s liberation from fascism, she returned and became involved in the International Democratic Women’s Federation. She is an advocate for the implementation of the goals of the United Nations Conference on women, and for disarmament … (full text).

Irma Schwager (* 31. Mai 1920 in Wien als Irma Wieselberg) ist eine österreichische antifaschistische Widerstandskämpferin, Politikerin und Philanthropin. Eine erste politische Bewusstseinsbildung erfolgte in der Ära des Austrofaschismus, in der Irma Wieselberg als Schülerin die Restriktionen des autoritären Ständestaates zu spüren bekam. Sie flüchtete nach dem Anschluss 1938 nach Belgien und von dort nach Frankreich, während ihre Eltern dem Holocaust zum Opfer fielen. Nach Kriegsausbruch in einem Internierungslager festgehalten, entkam sie und schloss sich der Résistance an. Irma Schwager betätigte sich im Rahmen der exilösterreichischen Front de libération nationale aktiv an der „Mädelarbeit“ … She says: “Recognize injustice, never again fascism, never again war – this maxim determined my life”. (0n 1000peacewomen).

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Irma Schwager – Austria

She works for the Women’s International Democratic Federation.

Watch these videos (in german):

Find her and her publications on ; on Google Video-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search.

Einige Texte auf deutsch:

Et un texte en français: L’Österreichische Freiheitsfront, une organisation de réfugiés dans la Résistance belge au nazisme.

(0n 1000peacewomen): … Born in 1920 to politically active Jewish parents in Vienna, Irma Schwager fled to Belgium in 1938 and then to France. Detained in a camp, she escaped and joined the resistance movement. This experience led her to peace work. And the way that women are affected by wars made her an advocate for the independence of women and against structural violence. After Austria’s liberation from fascism, she returned and became involved in the International Democratic Women’s Federation.

She is an advocate for the implementation of the goals of the United Nations Conference on women and for disarmament.Recently, a group of women sat together while Elfriede Jelinek’s speech on the occasion of her Nobel Prize for Literature was on the radio. The lively chatter went silent. Irma Schwager wanted to hear exactly what Elfriede had to say with her complex word cascades. That is how Irma is: always interested, always committed, always informed and alert in following the events of the time, past and present.

Irma Schwager has inspired this productive curiosity in her colleagues. In the Austrian Federation of Democratic Women, of which she was long director, she educated the younger generation in political alertness. “There was a time when almost every person was politicized,” she once said. “In 1933 the Nazis came to power in Germany and this danger was also visible in Austria long before 1938.”

Born in 1920 of Jewish parents, Irma experienced the pogroms in the streets of Vienna as a young girl, when Jews were picked up and forced to clean streets amidst the hoots of bystanders. In 1938 the first transports to Dachau took place. While Irma fled the country, her parents, who ran a small shop, stayed in Vienna. Both they and two of her brothers died in the Holocaust.

At age 18 Irma started out for England, but never arrived, instead staying illegally in Belgium and joining a group of political emigrants. In the discussions she began to understand that “you are not only a victim, you not only can resist, you have to.” With the German invasion in May 1940 the situation in occupied Belgium got so critical for Irma that she fled to France. There she was detained in the camp Gurs and joined an illegal Communist organization. With the help of the French resistance movement she succeeded in fleeing the camp.

Now the daily political routine in the Resistance began for Irma. The Austrians made up a group of their own. While the young men tried to infiltrate different positions of the Wehrmacht in order to agitate against the war there, the girls made contact with the soldiers and tried to convince them to turn against the war.

In 1943 when Irma was pregnant, she was sent to her husband who was also active in the Resistance in one of the northern departments. She gave birth to her daughter, with fake documents, and experienced the solidarity of her French comrades. “I had enough clothes for six children.” Irma continued her resistance work and transported leaflets in the baby carriage. “That was wonderfully unsuspicious” – but perilous.

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Fatma Hamisi Misango – Tanzania

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Linked with Ruvuma Orphans Association ROA.

Fatma Hamisi Misango was born in 1961 in the poor and neglected Songea District in south western Tanzania. She is a district counsellor and coordinator of a legal aid program in the district. She is engaged in governance issues, legal aid to women and children, particularly those orphaned by HIV/Aids, income generation and political participation. As a result of her work, women’s participation in the civil society in Songea has increased, and they have started their own initiatives to help widows of HIV/Aids.

Educated to secondary school level, she has built formal and informal networks. She belongs to the Sahiba Sisters Foundation, a network of Muslim women engaged in development. Other affiliations are the Tanzania Gender Network, the Intermediary Gender Network and Songea Counsellors and Women in Enterprise. “She values people’s support and has made extensive networks with religious and community leaders and local government officials,” says a colleague who knows her well … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no photo found for Fatma Hamisi Misango, Tanzania

She works for the Songea District Council, and for the Songea Legal Aid Program SOPLU (both have not an own website).

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … Songea District in the South-West is one of the least developed, poorest areas in Tanzania. Its lremoteness makes it invisible in national development priorities, so there is low investment and minimal presence of international donors in this region. But its location on the borders to Malawi and Zambia offers countless opportunities for women and youth in cross-border trading, agriculture and development linkages.

As a result of Fatma Misango’s work, the participation of women in the civil society has increased. The women have begun initiatives to help widows of HIV/Aids and a legal aid scheme. “Fatma knows how to involve others in development activities,” says the colleague. “She has been instrumental in networking in seven community groups and promotes the inclusion of more women in training.”

Fatma Misango addresses culture and religion issues, often contradicting religious leaders who feel that she wants to question religious authorities. Perhaps her greatest challenge is motivating women in believing they can improve their lives. They face many problems as a result of oppressive laws and customs, as well as discrimination and hunger. She wants to make a difference in women’s lives, to improve their lives. This is her driving force. Fatma’s driving force is to make a difference in women’s lives. (On 1000peacewomen).

Sorry, no other texts found in the internet for Fatma Hamisi Misango, Tanzania.

links:

Open University of Tanzania OUT;

Regional Commisioner’s Office Ruvuma;

Ntimbanjayo Millinga.

Maya John Ingty – India

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005

Maya John Ingty (born in 1932) plays a unique role in the conflict-ridden Northeast region, bringing together powerful Christian and secular organizations to work for peace. Several states in the Northeast have been torn by conflict and strife, both internal and with the security forces. This conflict has left the economy and society in a shambles. The region has a high number of school and college dropouts and there are a number of young widows who have to fend for themselves and their young children. Ingty, the first woman from the Karbi tribe to complete a Masters degree, has been involved in social work right from her college days. In 1956, she was appointed Special Officer (Social Welfare) through an application and interview in undivided Assam, when Shillong was the capital of Assam. Meghalaya was formed as a separate state only in 1972 … (full text).

… Maya is also a respected member of the Church and plays an important role in critiquing the regressive positions of the Church. She has pushed for greater involvement of the Church with social issues and with other secular and non-Christian organisations in their work for peace. As Secretary of the Diocesan Board of Participatory Development, she has undertaken several programmes to help young people develop self-employment skills. She firmly believes this will lead them away from the gun culture. The activities include natural resource management, weaving and tailoring, vermicomposting, fishery, and training people to be barefoot veterinary doctors, automobile drivers and electricians. With no training, and often no forum behind her, Maya has worked with marginalised people since 1956. She has also been active in ecological and conservation programmes. Many young people received training in vermicomposting in Tinsukia (Upper Assam) under an eco-friendly waste control programme. Since then, many of them have taken up organic farming. In her individual capacity as well, Maya has been a member of important peace missions and committees in the strife-torn Northeastern region. (full text).

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Maya John Ingty – India

She works for the Diocesan Board for Participatory Development, for the Interdenominational Christian Women’s Forum, and for the Northeast Christian Council Women’s Assembly (no own website for all three groups).

Tribute to an Educator and Peace Builder, 5 pdf-pages.

(1000peacewomen): Being a respected member of the church does not constrain Maya from critiquing its regressive positions and pushing for its greater involvement with social, often secular, issues. Maya John Ingty plays a unique role in the northeast, bringing together powerful Christian and secular organizations to work for peace. She is strongly driven by her conviction that working for social justice issues should not be determined by caste, creed, or religious persuasions.

She also mobilizes the youth and women-through group discussions, skill-building, and alternative ideas for sustainable development for women-toward education and employment as a means of drawing people away from the pervasive culture of the gun.

Maya John Ingty (born on 16 March 1932) is a Karbi, an indigenous, marginalized tribe in the Indian Northeast. With four brothers and sister, she was born into a family committed to social issues. Her father was a dubhashi (interpreter/translator of the court). Maya was the first Karbi woman to complete a Masters degree. She did her Bachelors and BT from Gauhati University and her MEd from Allahabad University. Her eldest brother, Samseen S Ingty, influenced the creation of the Karbi Anglong district in Assam.

Maya was involved in social activities from her college days through the Student Christian Movement of Northeast India. In 1956, she was appointed special officer (Social Welfare) in undivided Assam, when Shillong was then its capital. (Meghalaya became a breakaway state only in 1972.) After her marriage in 1958, she resigned and joined the Union Christian College (UCC) in Meghalaya, where her husband worked.

As a government officer, Maya was a desk-bound upper-level bureaucrat. But her heart was in grassroots activities. While at the UCC, she mobilized a group of women and formed a women’s association, which conducted several health programs and started a primary school. It also helped in the formation of a high school in Umbir village in Meghalaya. The women’s association is still exists and continues to run healthcare programs, school education, and immunization camps.

For six years, Maya worked as president of the Northeast India Christian Council Women’s Assembly, conducting many workshops and discussions on topics relating to women’s development. Much of this work was transacted with people working in conflict situations. She regularly visits the Northeast’s conflict-ridden areas, trying to support women and women’s groups who are struggling to bring a modicum of peace to their villages.

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Galuh Wandita – Indonesia

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Linked with Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation CAVR.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Galuh Wandita (born 1966) is an activist working for human rights in conflict areas. She frames her work with a gender perspective irrespective of whether it deals with industry/corporate-triggered conflict in Kalimantan or Papua or atrocities following the referendum in East Timor prior to the birth of the new nation. With her professional contribution spanning more than a dozen years, Galuh has established herself in the forefront of the feminist movement. Her work has not only changed the lives of the people she works for, but also the way human rights are applied, promoted and protected. Galuh Wandita was in her early 20s when she decided to return from the United States, where she had lived for almost a lifetime, to her home country Indonesia. “My father passed away, and it was a wake-up call for me to come home and settle down here,” she says. The youngest of three daughters of Soedjatmoko – a distinguished diplomat and internationally-recognized intellectual who was once the Rector of the UN University – Galuh returned to her country in 1989 more as an international person who had never really resided in the country of her ancestors. After she graduated from Swarthmore College in Philadelphia, she worked in a non-government organization dealing with reproductive health and HIV/AIDS issues, then took up a post at Oxfam Great Britain as its Program Manager in Indonesia. At that time, Oxfam GB was moving from from a welfare-based approach to a rights-based approach to development … She says: … “Women living in conflict areas need help to enter the public arena, grab the microphone and influence the decision-makers, if not be the decision-makers themselves” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found for Galuh Wandita, Indonesia.

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Her book: The Price of Denial

Galuh Wandita has a long history of working with human rights organizations in Indonesia and Timor-Leste, where she developed expertise on gender and justice. In 2002 she became deputy director of the UN-backed Timorese Truth and Reconciliation Commission (CAVR) and was instrumental in writing the Commission’s Final Report. Since early 2007 she has been the head of the ICTJ’s Jakarta office, where she manages our work in Indonesia and Timor-Leste. Wandita sat down to talk with us during a recent visit to our New York office …(full text, April 9, 2008).

She works for the Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation CAVR of East-Timor / Comissao de Acolhimento, Verdade e Reconciliaçao CAVR de Timor-Leste

She is Director of the International Center for Transnational Justice ICTJ, Jakarta: Over the last decade, Galuh Wandita has worked with several local human rights organizations in East Timor and Indonesia. Before moving to East Timor in 1999, she worked for 10 years with Oxfam, focusing on support for local NGOs working in conflict areas in Eastern Indonesia (Nusa Tenggara Timur, East Timor (then part of Indonesia), Papua, and Kalimantan), with a focus on gender approach to development. In 1999, she worked with East Timorese human rights NGOs, during the crisis around the ballot, monitoring the human rights situation, providing support for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and women victims of violence. In 2000, she worked as a human rights officer for the United Nations in East Timor, and in 2002 was appointed as the Deputy Director/Program Manager of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (CAVR). After 2003, she continued as Program Manager, and later joined the Editorial Team for the writing of the Commission’s Final Report. She obtained a BA in Anthropology from Swarthmore College, and completed a Masters in International Human Rights Law from Oxford University in 2007 (ICTJ/her short bio).

Find her and her publications on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search (with many articles in Indonesian languages).

She says also: … I think—I mean, I think at this moment, because of the—this [inaudible] to now, I think the reformation agenda has gone backwards, and a lot of the information about the truth, what happened during his (Suharto’s) regime, is actually to become known or to be acknowledged by the public in Indonesia, the general public in Indonesia, and also by the Indonesian government, obviously. So I think that what I would like to say to the American public is that, you know, it might be very baffling to see what’s happening now with this—all this sort of apologizing and adoration for Suharto, but really the jury is still not out. The truth hasn’t come out yet, and we mustn’t forget the cost, I think, that both Allan and Brad have spoken about, the cost of the thirty years of corruption and crimes, really. We’re still living in the consequences of what happened during Suharto regime. But in Indonesia, that connection is still not made yet, and that is part of our struggle now, to look at the crimes of the past and actually to find—to speak to the public about how his actions actually led to all these crimes … (full interview text, January 28, 2008).

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Prak Sokhany – Cambodia

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inked with Applied Conflict Transformation Studies ACTS.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Prak Sokhany (born 1958) has channeled her life and work into peace building and conflict resolution in Cambodia, where people are still traumatized by the wounds of war. For nearly ten years, she and her organization, Australian Catholic Relief (ACR), with its allies in peace work, have trained NGO workers, government officials and entire communities in conflict resolution and peace building. Prak works with the grassroots, designs training programs, facilitating training and networking with numerous institutions. Prak Sokhany has dedicated her life to making a better, more peaceful world where people work together to create a civil society and collaborate to solve problems that cause violence. After surviving the brutal Khmer Rouge regime, Sokhany had to deal with the reality of Cambodian society after the Khmer Rouge era, where people have lost trust in each other and violence continues to wreak havoc on their culture and daily life … // … She says: “Perhaps the deep wounds of the war are impossible to erase. Perhaps we can only come to understand it better,” says Sokhany. But she has kept her hopes up and this is what motivates her in her work for a “better world”. “Humanity can be healed and evolve only through peace building and solidarity of the community,” she says … (On 1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Prak Sokhany – Cambodia

She works for the Australian Catholic Relief ACR, (named on hotfrog, and on AYAD Assignements). She is part of the Cooperation Committee for Cambodia CCC with its NGO Good Practice Project NGO GPP, also find her on Google Book-search and on Google Blog-search.

… The first peace building dictionary in English – Khmer were introduced by the centre for Peace and Development Cambodia Development Resource Institute by Ok Serei Sopheak and David Wharton with Meas Savath, Chea Mouy Kry, Kep Kanaro, Prak Sokhany and Thorng Kakada … (full text).

MDG 3 – Promoting Gender equality and Empowering Women: Ms Prak Sokhany was one of the 1,000 women nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005. She is also the Programs Advisor for Caritas Australia ’s partner in Cambodia . Ms Prak believes that “the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) cannot be seen as individual goals. They are all interconnected. Gender equality and empowering women are a requirement of every goal. We cannot achieve the goals in isolation.” The MDGs are something that many people strive to achieve, and it is through an integrated approach that this is being done effectively. It is not possible, as Ms Sokhany says, to achieve these goals in isolation, we need to see all of the MDGs as something to strive for and achieve in collaboration. (on Refugee Camps – Women and Children at Risk).

Appeal for Peace Of the Cambodian civil society groups on the armed clash between the Cambodian and Thai troops near Preah Vihear Temple, 16 October 2008 … (full text). For more information:

  • Ms. Prak Sokhany, member of the Working Group on Peace, 012 940 851;
  • Mr. Cheang Sokha, Executive Director, Youth Resource Development Program, 012 360 464;
  • Ms. Chan Sona, Executive Director of Women Peace Makers, 012 568 479.

On 1000peacewomen 2/2: … In 1998, after undergoing formal training in conflict resolution and peace building, Sokhany formed a volunteer group to train the municipal officers in Phnom Penh in conflict resolution. The group also developed the training curriculum. They then networked with regional organizations and evolved into the Alliance for Conflict Transformation (ACT). ACT gets strong support from the Malaysia-based Southeast Asia for Conflict Studies Network. Sokhany has since become a volunteer member of the executive committee of ACT.

When the corrupt judicial system failed to convince the public that it was an effective institution to resolve conflict, Sokhany and ACT began training NGOs to facilitate conflict resolution at the local level, so that people don’t have to pay bribes to get their way through the courts. Poverty is a severe enough problem, and the Cambodian people cannot afford to pay bribes to buy their way out of conflict, says Sokhany.

There is, however, more to it than just saving money and time, she says. “Through the conflict resolution process at the local level, people learn about reconciliation and forgiveness in order to reach a satisfactory resolution.”

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Indira Jaising – India

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Linked with India: The 498A Survival Kit – A Guide To Surviving IPC 498A.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Indira Jaising (born 1940, Mumbai) is an Indian lawyer. She went to school in Mumbai and graduated in Bangalore, before getting her degree in law in 1962. Jaising became the first woman to be designated as a Senior Advocate by the High Court of Bombay in 1986. From the beginning of her legal career, she has focused on protection of human rights, rights of women and those of the poor working class … // … Indira Jaising has attended several national and international conferences on women and represented her country at these conferences. She had a fellowship at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies London and has been a visiting Scholar at the Columbia University New York. She was conferred with the Rotary Manav Seva Award in recognition of her services to the nation in fighting corruption and as a champion of the weaker sections of the society. She was given the Padma Shree by the President of India in 2005 for her service to the cause of public affairs … (full text).

Her Bio and CV: on OHCHR.org, on Gender and Law Association GALA.

Once fighting to establish herself on an equal footing with her male colleagues, Indira Jaising’s legal work and her dedication to the cause of the marginalized is today the stuff of legend-her cases include Olga Tellis (pavement-dwellers’ rights), the Bhopal Gas Leak (that the government cannot represent the victims to their exclusion), Mary Roy (inheritance for women), Gita Hariharan (mother’s right to guardianship of the child), and many others. With each victory, Indira holds the Indian constitution to its covenant-justice for all.Indira Jaising was born in 1942 to Sindhi parents, from a middleclass business community, who had migrated from what is now Pakistan. Like so many people displaced during the massively traumatic India-Pakistan Partition, her parents were forced to uproot themselves, leave everything behind, and relocate to India. Indira still retains vivid memories of Partition and of her ancestral home in Pakistan. “The greatest sense of loss I experienced was the loss of a language with which I could identify,” she says, recalling the lasting emotional destitution following Partition. “The fact that there is no Sindh state in India has always made me feel displaced, a refugee.” She says: … “Stereotyping of women, both as lawyers and as women, is carried to the extremes in the profession. It has been a great struggle to gain acceptance, without compromising yourself” … (on 1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Indira Jaising – India

She is founder-member of and works for the Lawyer’s Collective.

Watch these videos:

She says: … The struggle goes back more than 16 years. The most difficult part was to convince law makers and policy makers that such a thing exists. They did not know that something like domestic violence needed to be dealt with by law. The words ‘domestic violence’ did not exist in Indian law. It is true that we did have section 498A in the Indian Penal Code which deals with cruelty to a married woman. However, there was no explicit definition of domestic violence. There was no explanation that verbal, emotional and sexual abuse is also violence. For them, violence meant only beating a woman, that that too severe and repeated beating … and: This law is in addition to other laws. It is an improvement or two. It defines domestic violence to include all form of violence and it provides a right to reside in the shared household. It provides accessible remedies and empowers judges to grant injunctions restraining violence … and: The commonest problem is marring a woman in India and then taking her to another country, normally the US and then sending her back with no visa to get back. It is a major problem which the government is looking into. Inter-governmental agreements are being worked out. In my opinion, such men should be kicked out of the US and sent back home to face the consequences. (full interview text).

Her book: Men`s Laws, Women`s Lives : A Constitutional Perspective on Religion, Common Law and Culture in South Asia, by Indira Jaising (ed), 2005.

A seminar on panchayats started here under the aegis of the Institute of Social Sciences (April 23-25). Though around 1,500 women delegates are attending it, with actress-activist Shabana Azmi and noted lawyer Indira Jaising as special guests, an irony looms large. In this round of elections, the very word “panchayat” seems almost missing or lost. Not just at the manifesto level but even during the campaigning … (full text, April 25, 2004).

Architects of Act on domestic violence caught in a catfight, December 27, 2007.

New Delhi: Upholding people’s right to access pathway that they had been using for time immemorial, the Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the Goa’s upcoming beach resort Fomento Resorts and Hotels to demolish the 1,000 metres of illegal extension of the building … // … Judges also accepted the proposition made by Goa Foundation’s lawyer Indira Jaising asserting that under the public trust doctrine, people couldn’t be denied access to the natural resources including the pathway … (full text, January 21, 2009) … and: ‘Public trust’ invoked in Cidade case.

Indira Jaising elected to UN committee on women discrimination: Jaising, 68, secured the highest number of votes – 149 out of 181 – in a keen contest; this was the first time India fielded a candidate for this 23-member committee … (full text). And: MS. Indira Jai Singh elected as member in CEDAW (Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women).

Indira Jaising, renowned Supreme Court lawyer and founder-member of the Lawyers Collective, spent last year lobbying the government on reviving the Domestic Violence Bill, 2002. It asks for far more stringent punishment for offenders. This year, women are fervently hoping the bill will become an Act. Jaising is among the experts being consulted by the law ministry on how to make it accessible to all women. And as the whole nation directs its eyes to the progress of the Bill in Parliament, Jaising will not rest even after it is enacted. It?s her mission to appoint women lawyers for victims in districts. (on Telegraph India, January 02, 2005).

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Mu Sochua – Cambodia

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Mu Sochua, 50, began this work while serving as Cambodia’s minister of women’s and veterans’ affairs. Last summer she left her post to join her country’s opposition party; she continues to learn the harsh truth by walking with those who walk the streets. “I am very frightened on these nights. But I want to feel the violence, the abuse, the reality of these women,” she says quietly, with controlled passion … // … More than two decades ago, Sochua finished graduate school in the United States. She could have stayed to enjoy a relatively comfortable career in social work. Instead she returned to her homeland to become a passionate fighter for girls and women. Her drive to transform a society shattered by war into one that’s fair and equal has led her to tackle one of the worst human rights problems of our time.Sex Trafficking is a global outrage that victimizes millions: Nepalese women are sold into India; sub-Saharan Africans into Belgium; Nigerians into Italy, Germany, and France; Filipinas throughout much of the world, including North America; and those from the former Soviet bloc all throughout Europe. (the wave project).

… Since her return to Cambodia after 18 years in exile, Mu Sochua has been an assertive participant in the rebirth of her homeland, which was torn apart in the 1970s and 1980s by genocide and foreign occupation … (full text).

Mu Sochua (born 1954) is deputy head of the steering committee of the opposition Sam Rainsy Party in Cambodia. A former minister of Women’s and Veterans’ Affairs, Mu spearheaded the drafting of the law on domestic violence and trafficking. A catalyst for policy reform and institution building for the advancement of women and children’s rights, she advises international organizations promoting women’s rights. She authored the Prevention of Domestic Violence law (pending parliament approval) and advocates for a quota system to ensure the participation of women in politics. Mu Sochua has no private office and has to share her computers with her colleagues. But the former government minister on women’s affairs pays little attention to luxury, even if she was born into it  … She says: “What I will not compromise on are poverty and violence against women”. (1000peacewomen).

… In July 2004 she stepped down from her role as a Minister, citing corruption as a major obstacle to her work … (full text).

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Mu Sochua – Cambodia

Since January 15, 2007 she works as Secretary General for the Sam Rainsy Party (its website, on wikipedia, Sam Rainsy USA, Sam Rainsy UK, and named on Liberal International, Cambodia).

Watch these videos:

  • Stolen Innocence – Cambodia, 25.25 min;
  • Seven – A Documentary Play, 07.30, Mar 19, 2008, and this text: Mu Sochua, our Board member from Cambodia and an inspiring political leader in her country, was one of seven remarkable women from around the world whose life and contribution was honored in a documentary play called Seven … (full text, February 12, 2008).

Her statement on Cambodian Rehabilitation and Development Board CRDB: Gender disparities exists in all sectors of development. Gender gaps are widespread in access to and control Of resources, in economic opportunities, in power and political voice. Women, girls and the female youth bear the largest and most direct costs of these inequalities. Addressing equity issues relating to women’s and children’s rights is crucial to good governance and to sustainable social and economic development, to social justice and to alleviating poverty. Indeed, improving the situation of women and children is central to the Royal Cambodian Government’s strategy to alleviate poverty. Neary Rattenack: Women are Precious Gems is our five-year strategy and action plan to achieve our vision … (full text, not dated).

“With no law to define specifically the penalty for acid attacks, several officials said more or less the same, ‘There will be a trial of this case of an acid attack, based the the obvious damage which has been inflicted on the victim’s appearance.’ “However, the deputy secretary-general of the Sam Rainsy Party and former Minister of Women’s Affairs Ms. Mu Sochua said, ‘Acid attacks, which often target women, should be considered a crime which is heavier than just bodily injury’ … (full text).

She says also: “Their bodies are cheap currency in Cambodia, where girls—many of them under 16—turn tricks for pennies, often with dozens of men a night. Why is this still going on? Blame poverty, blame corruption, blame a society that views women as a disposable resource. Carol Mithers talks to an amazing crusader named Mu Sochua about her fight to stop the tragedy”. (the wave project).

Find her and her publications on IMDb; on Google Images-results; on Google News-results; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

And she says (in her statement): “The Secretary General is to make the SRP machinery work and that task can never be achieved if one works alone or with just a few groups of selected people. I believe in team work, I believe in reaching out, I believe in the power of ideas and actions. But with a real focus … ” (full text).

On 1000peacewomen 2/2: … Coming from an affluent family in Cambodia, Mu Sochua (born 1954) grew up in an environment where she got a lot of love and attention from relatives. “My father was not with my mother when I was born. He registered my birth in another province two weeks later. I learned about loneliness, thinking that my mom had to be lonely when she was pregnant and delivered a baby while my father was away.”

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Zohra Andi Baso – Indonesia

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Zohra Andi Baso (born 1952) is an activist working on empowering women to be aware of their rights so they can defend them. She began as a journalist and a consumer rights activist focusing on women. She has shifting focus onto dealing with violence against women, both in domestic and public spaces, social and political, through an organization she founded, the Forum for Women’s Issues in South Sulawesi, her home province. The endless work has kept her from finishing her dissertation for her doctorate degree.Coming from a royal family in the South Sulawesi (Celebes island) province, Zohra Andi Baso grew up with certain privileges. But she never cared for the feudalism and conservatism that accompanied them. “Even in my time, with all the money our family had, the girls were advised to stop going to school after finishing elementary,” she says, laughing.
As the youngest in a line of cousins, Zohra saw her older female cousins getting married so early (right after the elementary school), simply because the junior high school was in a bigger town, and the family didn’t want them to move away. As the eldest of three daughters, she managed to escape this cultural trap, thanks to her faithful ally in the family, her own mother. “My mother said one of us (three) had to continue studying. She got it from one side of her grandfather’s clan,” Zohra explains. One of her sisters got married not long after she graduated from junior high school, and the other, like her, continued her studies … She says: “I want justice for women. I want them to be aware of their rights and be brave enough to stand up whenever these are violated” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

She is named as political heroe.

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Zohra Andi Baso – Indonesia

She works for the South Sulawesi Consumer Association, for the Forum for Women’s Issues in South Sulawesi (both not found in the internet), and for the Indonesian Women’s Coalition KPI (named on human trafficking.org).

Find some articles in english:

Find her and her publications on National Library of Australia, Catalogue; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Find many articles in Indonesian language with her name in:

(on 1000peacewomen 2/2): … Zohra says of her privileged childhood: “I never understood why we needed to be treated differently, such as asking four people to lift us on their shoulders in a beautifully decorated ‘cage’, or people getting off from their bikes in a rush upon seeing our cars coming from afar.” But she loved listening to her mother and aunts tell family stories. One of them was about the great-grandfather of Zohra’s mother, whose entire family was sent to exile in Padang, West Sumatra, by the Dutch colonizers.

As part of the progressive elite of Minang (the ethnic city in West Sumatra), they were inspired to pursue modern education, and this became a model for little Zohra. “I don’t really know,” she shrugs when asked what triggered her adult activism. “Perhaps it was the injustice I saw as part of our life back then, and these fascinating family stories lingered in my mind, and inspired me to do what I’m doing now.”

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Raqiya Humeidan – Yemen

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Raqiya Humeidan was the first woman in Yemen and the Arab Gulf region to become a lawyer. Born in 1947 in Aden, she graduated with a BA in Law from the University of London in 1971, and the following year obtained a Masters in Law, from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSEPS). She is currently a private barrister and is also a renowned legal consultant and advisor for the World Bank. For the last 24 years, Humeidan has been working hard as a lawyer and legal advisor for the Yemeni Supreme Court. She was the first woman lawyer in Yemen and the Arab Gulf region, and she has represented her country in many regional and international legal conferences. Throughout her career as a lawyer in Yemen, one of the developing countries where female illiteracy stands at around 75%, Humeidan has maintained a prominent profile and continued to defend women’s rights. Her unwavering stands have earned her popularity allover the country and have accredited her to be nominated for the membership of the Higher Committee for the 1993 parliamentary elections … (On 1000peacewomen 1/2).

The first woman in Yemen to become a lawyer, Raqiya Humeidan is an English-educated practitioner who has held significant positions in the Yemeni government, including legal adviser to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and to the National Council for Foreign Trade. She is “a highly respected and very skilled lawyer” running a successful practice in business law (in General Business Law, Band 2, mentionned on Chambers and Partners).

She is named in ‘Exceptional Gulf Women‘ about the 1000peacewomen project.

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sorry, no photo found for Raqiya Humeidan, Yemen

She works for the Advisory Committee to the Ministry of Human Rights ACMHR; for the Yemen Advocates Union YAU; and for the Arab Association for Supporting Women and Juvenile Issues AASWJI, (no website found for any of these three organizations).
She is named as political heroe, (their homepage).

ADEN, Yemen, Feb 24 (Reuters) – When Islamists criticised a concert by a Syrian woman singer in Yemen’s port city of Aden this month, disaffected southerners took it as yet another slight from their more powerful northern cousins. Troops and police guarded the half-empty stadium when Asala took the stage, braving a reported threat from al Qaeda to stop the show, but she sang into the early hours with no disruption. Still, the verbal sniping by Islamist parliamentarians from the north left a sour taste for many in the sleepy southern city, where performances by Arab pop stars are a novelty. “They’ve had concerts in Sanaa and Taiz and Hodeida before. Nobody opened his mouth,” said Raqiya Humeidan, a woman lawyer, referring to northern cities. “Why is it different in Aden?” Far less trivial grievances are fuelling discontent here, where many are once again querying the value of the 1990 union between the Marxist-led south and the tribal-dominated north … (full text).

She says: … “They took our lands, our jobs and our wealth … We all feel they treat us with hate. So people are saying: If that’s what you mean by unity, we don’t want it” … (quotes).

Trotzig gab die syrische Sängerin Asala Nasri ihr Konzert im Stadion der südjemenitischen Hafenstadt Aden – obwohl Islamisten und angeblich El-Kaida ihr massiv gedroht hatten. Ihr Auftritt sei unmoralisch und widerspreche der Sharia, hieß es zur Begründung. Die forsche, in einen westlichen Hosenanzug gekleidete Anwältin Raqiya Humeidan ist erbost: “Warum dürfen wir in Aden kein solches Konzert haben? Warum hatten sie Konzerte in Sanaa, in Hadramawt und in Hodeida? Nur in Aden nicht. Alles in Aden muss anders behandelt werden” … (ganzer Text).

(On 1000peacewomen 2/2): … Throughout her life she wrangled with the Yemenite authorities because of her openly critical views, but she always remained steadfast in her positions. She worked hard to achieve peace in her community, about which she says: “Our definition of peace is the same as our definition of humanity.

We would not be able to achieve peace until justice and equality prevail among people, regardless of gender, religious or political considerations.” She drafted hundreds of legal contracts in various respects, and has represented hundreds of clients (companies, public institutions, foreign bodies and individuals) before Yemeni courts. She has been a prominent consultant for the World Bank in the Resettlement Plan and Social Assessment Study.

From July 1973 to March 1980 Humeidan worked in various crucial positions in the Yemenite government and in the private sector. She worked as a Legal Advisor in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a member of the Attorney General’s Chamber in the Ministry of Justice, and the Legal Advisor of the National Council for Foreign Trade. She conducted several studies on various legal national and international topics, such as phrasing and revising the draft bills of law and presidential and ministerial resolutions.

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Adrienne van Melle-Hermans – Netherlands (1931 – 2007)

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Adrienne van Melle-Hermans passed away in August 2007

She was one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

At 73, an age when most would settle for retirement, Adrienne van Melle-Hermans is busy trying to resolve the biggest challenge facing Dutch society today: seeing the increasingly widening gulf between ‘us’ and ‘them’ – Dutch-born white people and immigrants and their children – she’s determined to bridge the gap … // … Changing people’s minds: Adrienne explains that Theo van Gogh’s killing was personally poignant because the suspect, Mohammed Bouyeri, grew up where she lives now. He went to the same school as her daughter (though not at the same time) and was a regular visitor at a community centre where Adrienne had been president for many years. Now, whenever she ventures out, she sees an area in rapid decline: empty shops, so-called ‘black’ schools almost entirely made up of students from immigrant backgrounds and growing ethnic tensions. But, while many point to religion as the root of today’s troubles, Adrienne prefers to focus on cultural similarities rather than differences … (full long text, 28-06-2005).

She said: “Born in a wealthy part of our planet, I feel an obligation to dedicate myself to work for a more just society, globally and in my community. This is one way to bring durable peace a little nearer”. (1000peacewomen).

1000 vrouwen die genomineerd waren voor de Nobelprijs voor de Vrede: Op 29 juni 2005 werden de namen van 1000 vrouwen bekend gemaakt die waren genomineerd voor de Nobelprijs voor de Vrede 2005. Onder de vrouwen – afkomstig uit 150 landen – waren vijf vrouwen uit Nederland vanwege hun toewijding en werk voor vrede en mensenrechten. ‘1000 Women for the Nobel Peace Prize 2005′ was een gemeenschappelijke inspanning om het werk van vrouwen voor vrede over de hele wereld te erkennen … (full text).

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Adrienne van Melle-Hermans – Netherlands  (1931 – 2007)

She worked for Vrouwen voor Vrede (Women for Peace). To find a long list of Netherland’s peace movements click on Interessante links down in the right column.

Voortrekker Vrouwen voor Vrede overleden: 24.08.2007 – Op 23 augustus is overleden Adrienne van Melle-Hermans. Met haar overlijden heeft de Nederlandse vredesbeweging één van haar leiders verloren. Decennialang was zij één van de voortrekkers van Vrouwen voor Vrede. Zij liep mee voorop in de vredeslobby, steunde zeer actief vredesvrouwen overzee en was jarenlang de vertegenwoordiger van Vrouwen van Vrede in het overleg met andere vredesorganisaties. Haar betrokkenheid, trouwe inzet en kennis zullen we node missen. Namens IKV Pax Christi, Marijke van Grafhorst, voorzitter IKV. (IKVpaxChristi.nl).

She was mentionned in grandmothers-for-peace-international-newsletter-may-1999.

Find her and her publications on Google Book-search and on Google Group-search.

She said also: … ““I was born in 1931 into a rather well-to-do family. It was important that we lived in Arnhem, [because] a few years later we were at war. That meant that for nine months we were in the middle of a battle and later had to be evacuated […] That was September 1944. I think that made it clear for me; I had experience of war and also the bad experience of going somewhere that people don’t like to receive you. It wasn’t their fault. They didn’t have enough to eat for their own children […] so it was a difficult time to be somewhere you aren’t welcome” … and: “With the assistance of a professor of ethics in the theological faculty, we organised study journeys to marginalised churches in Eastern Europe. That wasn’t well accepted because I was a member of the Christian Student Movement and we said ‘in order to understand the people of Eastern Europe, we need to learn something about communism’. For one week we studied Marx and people in the Christian Union said ‘you should be studying the gospel of Matthew’ so there was conflict over that” … and: “The UN has now passed Resolution 1325 saying that women have to be more involved in conflict solution and the reconstruction of countries. For a long time, I found that it was the men in the governments who made peace, but that peace can only happen on the ground if the women are involved. Women don’t tend to have a high rank in society, so in countries like former Yugoslavia, they’re less nationalistic and more willing to work with the enemy” … and: “A lot of people don’t like to hear that you have to make a difference between radical Muslims and Muslims as a whole. It’s stupid. We have a duty to make the difference” … (full long text).

(On 1000peacewomen): Adrienne van Melle-Hermans has been tirelessly battling the polarization of her native country for many years. She fights racism, fosters cooperation between religions, and spreads understanding between women of many cultures at many different levels. She has represented Women for Peace at conferences, workshops, and across all media. Adrienne also works extensively at grassroots level, setting up meetings and discussions in homes and community centers, reaching out to those women herself.

Although illness curtails some of her activities, her fight goes on.At an age when most of us would settle for an argument about the Netherland’s greatest artist, Adrienne van Melle-Hermans is trying to resolve the biggest challenge facing Dutch society today. She does not just want to bridge what she sees as an increasingly widening gulf between ‘us’ and ‘them,’ she wants to be the bridge. Recently, recovering in hospital from major surgery, she had regular visits from groups from her home neighborhood in Amsterdam. The women from the Moroccan Berber culture wanted to join the multi-cultural meetings to try to improve their community but were not allowed to by their husbands. Adrienne came up with the bright idea of moving the group to a primary school, a place where their husbands would be happy for them to go. Problem solved.

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Shelley J. Anderson – Netherlands and USA

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Linked with IFOR’s Women Peacemaker’s Program WPP, and with the International Fellowship of Reconciliation ifor.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

At the heart of the Women Peacemakers Program (WPP) and Shelley Anderson’s approach is dialogue and listening. “We actively ask the women we work with ‘What do you need?’ and really try to listen,” she says. The requests for nonviolence training are increasing every year. Since the WPP began in 1997, they have trained at least 15,000 people. Shelley Anderson was born in Daytona Beach, Florida, USA. At the age of 19, she went into the military to earn enough money for university. During her time in the US Army, though, she had a crisis of conscience. “Even though I was not actually pulling a trigger I was involved in a system that was working for death. What became very clear to me as I struggled with this was that I would like to die without blood on my hands,” she said.

It was during this period that Shelley became interested in peace issues. She found a group of Quakers who explained to her conscientious objection, and she started looking for opportunities to educate herself about issues of women and peace. “I was lucky because I was raised in a time when the civil rights movement, the anti-Vietnam war movement, and the women’s movements were all very active. As a young girl I had the feeling that change was possible, and that people could make change. All of those inspired me” …

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found for Shelley J. Anderson, Netherlands and USA

She works for the International Fellowship of Reconciliation’s Women Peacemakers Program IFOR WPP.

… The critical turning point in moving Shelley to leave the military was attending a speaking tour organized by Quakers of Habakusha, Japanese people who survived the US bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. “On the tour there was a Japanese woman who was a Habakusha,” she said. “She had a daughter who had been pregnant several times, had several miscarriages, and when she was able to bring a baby to full term, it was so deformed that it died very quickly. Now the daughter was pregnant again, and the family was living in fear.

Immediately after this Japanese woman an American woman, also on the tour, spoke. Her husband had been a US soldier who was sent in immediately after the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki to clean up. He had recently died from leukemia. They had a daughter who had been pregnant several times and miscarried. When she was finally able to bring a baby to term, it was so deformed that it died. Her daughter was pregnant again.

Shelley remembers: “This was like a slap in the face to me. I thought ‘this is what war really is.’ I looked at the Japanese woman and the American woman and I thought ‘the Americans were supposed to have won and the Japanese lost, but both of these women’s families are living in fear.’ That was a turning point for me. I decided to leave the military. I did not know what the consequences would be, but I would leave and I would start working for peace, especially to get rid of nuclear weapons.”

After leaving the military as a conscientious objector in the early 1980s, the first peace group Shelley worked for was a local group in Minneapolis, Minnesota called Friends for a Nonviolent World. The organization was a Quaker peace group and her supervisor, who had worked with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was an inspiring example of total dedication to the struggle for peace and justice.

Anderson went to university and majored in women’s studies. “I’d always known that if we want a better world, we have to improve the status of women,” she said. “Women are going to change the world.”

She moved to the Netherlands in 1986 and worked for an international news service called Disarmament Campaigns. She began work at the International Fellowship of Reconciliation (IFOR) initially as a volunteer in 1988 and has been with the organization ever since.

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Mogullamma – India

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Linked with GlobalGiving, and with Action on Disablility and Development ADD.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Disabled, with no strength in her legs since childhood, Mogullamma has been a crusader for the rights of disabled people. She started with an NGO working with disabled people, eventually becoming a psychotherapist. Mogullamma is today involved mainly with the facilitation of life skills among disabled women, and providing them with legal literacy on public works department rights. The Andhra Pradesh

government has adopted her concept of a “neighborhood center” for people with disabilities.Mogullamma, 23 years old, comes from a poor Backward Caste family of the Munnuru Kaapu community in Andhra Pradesh. She was just one year old when, in treating a small problem, local quacks injected her with a chemical that resulted in the loss of sensation in both her legs. Her parents, both of whom are daily-wage farmers with an annual income of less than Rs 10,000, took her to a doctor in a nearby town, where they were informed that she would never be able to feel any sensation in her legs again, leave alone walk – she had been stricken with polio. Mogullamma’s family is from one of the worst drought-affected parts of India, a place where hunger suicides are common as day, and abject poverty is the order. The status of women is abominable – economic backwardness has, over the years, set in place some cult practices, many of which target women as the basic cause of the lack of soil fertility. It inevitably leads to atrocities against women  … Mogullamma, finally self-mobile in her motorized wheelchair, has become a resource center, training disability activists in social mobilization and community organization … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, not any photo found for Mogullamma in big India

1000peacewomen 2/2: … Despite their initial depression over her diagnosis, Mogullamma’s parents chose not to let her handicap affect her or their family. Her education would continue. Right through her childhood, Mogullamma’s father carried her to school and back. After she grew up, Mogullamma hobbled to and from school on all fours.

Although her parents learned to live with Mogullamma’s disability, it wasn’t as easy for her: her disability, as it is in many social setups in India, was a source of amusement and ridicule. By the time she finished her graduation, she was moving around in a tricycle.

Mogullamma began working, even as she was an undergraduate, with a society her mother belonged to. There was a vacancy for the post of a bookkeeper, and an educated youngster was formally called for: Mogullamma had already been working as a bookkeeper at the organization, albeit unofficially, since she was in the IX standard. She applied, and landed the job easily enough, continuing as a bookkeeper for three years.

But it was after joining Commitments – an NGO working with the disabled – that she finished her graduation in 2000 and came into her own. Commitments had advertised for activists who were themselves disabled and were interested in working for other disabled people. A public-trust organization, Commitments works for the overall development of people with all categories of disability–physiological, visual, oral, aural, mental, and psychological–through community-based rehabilitation programs.

Mogullamma has rehabilitated people with different disabilities, as well as persuaded PWDs to set up groups to give disabled people training in different vocations. Some of her work also involves dealing with the particular problems of different people; many children have benefited from her initiatives to get them corrective surgeries, and she often acted as physiotherapist to many of them.

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Elza Berquó – Brazil

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

In 1969, Elza Berquó (1931) had to interrupt a brilliant career as a university professor because of the military regime. She was invited to work abroad, but she did not leave Brazil. The reason that made her stay is her belief in scientific knowledge as an important instrument against social injustice. Author of major researches on exclusion and population inequality, she provides the means for social movements and governmental entities to act. Demographer, PhD in Biostatistics (Columbia University, New York), Elza Berquó was returning from a trip when she heard, on the radio, her name on a list of professors whose licenses had been revoked by the military dictatorship. “I was a professor at the School of Public Health in the University of São Paulo, and was forced to retire. It was a tragedy, it was my life” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

Elza Berquó, professora titular aposentada da Faculdade de Saúde Pública da USP, é presidente da Comissão Nacional de População e Desenvolvimento (CNPD), coordenadora do Programa de Saúde Reprodutiva e Sexualidade do Nepo-Unicamp, membro do Conselho Técnico do IBGE, membro da Academia Brasileira de Ciências e coordenadora da Área de População e Sociedade do Cebrap. Sua produção científica nos últimos anos cobre as áreas da demografia da família, da mulher e da população negra. (CEM).

… Under the firm and inspirational leadership of the demographer Elza Berquó, this second survey renewed and expanded the proposition of the previous study to cover a vast range of essential questions relating to sexual and reproductive health. It also included topics like domestic violence and the abuse of alcohol and other psychoactive substances, which were explored in detail for the first time within the sphere of the present survey. It was backed by an advisory committee of specialists within the fields of statistics, epidemiology and sexual and reproductive health involving professors and researchers from the Universidade de São Paulo (USP), Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (FIOCRUZ) and Fundação Getúlio Vargas São Paulo (FGV-SP) … (full text, June 2008).

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Elza Berquó – Brazil

She works for the Centro Brasileiro de Análise e Planejamento CEBRAP – (and in english: the Brazilian Center for Planning and Analysis / see its Homepage).

She says: “Peace is the respect for every human being, regardless of race, religion and political beliefs”. (1000peacewomen).

… Chair Chowdhury and Brazilian Elza Berquo discuss Brazil’s proposal, Brazilian proposal, which called for review of laws containing punitive measures against women who have undergone illegal abortion, and urging health systems to train and equip health service providers and take other measures to seek to ensure that abortion is safe and accessible in circumstances where abortion is not against the law … (full text).

How has Brazil’s decline in fertility affected women’s lives? In a series of papers, Brazilian women’s health advocates examine the impact of family planning on women’s empowerment. The papers include discussions of: AIDS and reproductive health, motherhood and women’s participation in the work force, contraceptive practices and abortion, violence against women, and children’s education and gender. Summaries of the papers are presented here in English … (full text).

Find her and her publications on Brazil’s WHO commissioners;on scientific commons; on USP; photos on abep.org.br; on BiomedExperts; on BookFinder.com; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Read in portugese language:

  • Todos os caminhos levam à urbe, 16 de abril de 2008;
  • Academia Brasileira de Ciencias;
  • FECUNDIDADE EM DECLÍNIO;
  • Pensata, para demógrafa, programa é desnecessário porque a taxa de crescimento populacional está caindo, 26.1.2004; http://www.coleguinhas.jor.br/pensata/2004_01_25_pensata_arquivos.html
  • discursos de abertura do V encontró;
  • Sexo e Vida – Panorama da Saude Reprodutiva no Brasil, Elza Berquo, 2003;
  • and finally: O movimento negro no Brasil ainda não tinha há 20 anos o mesmo peso político que tem hoje, quando a fundadora do Núcleo de Estudos de População (Nepo) da Unicamp, professora Elza Berquó, explanou sobre as pesquisas que propunha e apresentou as colaboradoras Estela María García de Pinto Cunha e Alícia Marta Bercovich, ambas argentinas, durante encontro da SBPC. “Como uma pesquisadora branca, juntamente com duas ‘gringas’, pretende estudar a população negra, se isto deve ser de nossa alçada?”, questionou uma pessoa negra na platéia. A resposta de Elza Berquó foi convincente: “Porque o Brasil ainda não tem demógrafos negros.Vamos torcer para que tenha, mas a demografia pode oferecer elementos importantes para a luta de vocês” … (full text).

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Nirmala – India

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Linked with Mahila Samakhya, all Indian (Gov),  and with Janaki – India.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

When Nirmala (born 1959) began work with women at the village level, she had to find ways to dodge her family so that she could attend school. Today, Nirmala is a strong campaigner for women’s rights, and an active member of women’s courts. A seasoned arbitrator, Nirmala is adept at sorting out issues amicably, steering both parties away from the police court rigmarole. She has also brought about a revolution in the way midwives operate in the region: they display a high level of professionalism and attention to hygiene. Wheatish complexion, slightly plump and always quick with a smile – that’s Nirmala. Born in 1959, she hails from the Raidas community. After her marriage, Nirmala moved to the village Vishwanath, where she lives today with her husband and three daughters, two sons, and their wives. The family’s sustenance is from agriculture … Nirmala’s husband would question her about where she was going and what she was doing: “What do you get for the work you’re doing?” and “Where do you stay at night when you are out on work?” …

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found for Nirmala in the endless India.

She works for Mahila Samakhya (Department of School Education and Literacy, Gov. of India).

… But Nirmala was determined to continue. With a colleague’s help, she managed to attend Mahila Samakhya meetings, enroll in the Women’s Education Center, and pass Class V.

Nirmala attends cluster meetings of the women’s group regularly now, laughing off her husband and his family’s jibes, and does not let them interfere with her work or dispirit her. She is well-known at the village and block level as a strong campaigner for women’s rights.

An active member of the women’s courts, she has a knack for solving tricky questions amicably. She listens to both sides of a matter, and then judges matters objectively. However, she is particularly alert to instances of discrimination against women, and invariably stands up for their rights.

In one case that she helped resolve, a woman had gone back to her parents’ home, unable to handle the daily domestic fights. Her parents approached the women’s court to help resolve the issue. The woman’s in-laws were powerful people, and responded negatively. When the women’s court requested them to be present at a hearing for the third time, the husband’s relatives turned up drunk. The court refused to discuss the matter with them, and called for the husband.

He turned up with some alacrity, both parties met face-to-face, and matters were resolved. The two now live amiably with the husband’s family.

Nirmala is also remarkably progressive in her outlook on women’s rights. In a neighboring village, a girl continued to live with her parents after marriage. When her parents finally approached the women’s court and asked them to resolve the matter, the court spoke to the girl, who told them that her husband was many years older, and was epileptic. She stolidly refused to go back: Nirmala spoke to her in-laws and managed to get her a divorce. Today, the girl is a schoolteacher, has remarried, and is happy.

Nirmala’s attempt is always to sort out all issues through mutual consent. Whenever a dispute arises, she believes, it ought to be solved in the village at the women’s group. This ensures that neither party gets mired in the unending police-court rigmarole, wasting both time and money. However, in cases where either party is uncooperative, she bounces them to the police and the courts.

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Salma Khadra Jayyusi – Palestine

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Linked with The Khalil Sakakini Cultural Centre KSCC, and (on January 13, 2009) with Palestine Family.net.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Salma Khadra Jayyusi, is a Palestinian poet, critic, translator, and anthologist. Born in Salt in East Jordan, she spent her childhood in Acre, then lived in Jerusalem where she finished her secondary education.She graduated in Arabic and English literature from the American University of Beirut and, later, obtained a Ph.D. from the University of London. Her doctoral thesis, Trends and Movements in Modern Arabic Poetry, was published by Brill, Leiden, in two volumes. She has traveled widely and has lived in many places in the Middle East, Europe, and the United States, first as a diplomat’s wife, then as professor of Arabic literature. She has taught at the Universities of Khartoum, Algiers, and Constantine, and in America at the Universities of Utah, Washington, and Texas. She has published her poetry and critical writings in many journals in the Middle East and abroad. Her first collection, Return from the Dreamy Fountain, was published in 1960.The June 1967 war made her suspend publication of her second diwan, and since then she has published little of the poetry she has written. Shocked at the fact that very little Arabic literature has been translated into the leading modern languages, in 1980 she founded PROTA (Project of Translation from Arabic), which aims at the dissemination of Arabic culture abroad, and to this enterprise she dedicated her full time and energy. In addition to the present anthology, she has finished editing two others: Modern Arabic Fiction and Drama (forthcoming, Columbia University Press), and The Literature of Modern Arabia (forthcoming, Kegan Paul International). (On zoominfo, original no more available).

Another bio on zoominfo with the original no more available:  arabworld.nitle.org/texts.php?module_id=7&reading_id=30 – Published on: 11/6/2007, Last Visited: 11/6/2007.

She says: “In my view there is no more demanding work that deserves our dedicated collaborative efforts at the present time than inter-cultural understanding”. (1000peacewomen).

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Salma Khadra Jayyusi – Palestine

She works for The Project for the Translation of Arabic PROTA (on arizona.edu).

… The effort to translate Arab women writers into English is now more systematic. The Project for Translation from Arabic (PROTA), established and directed by the Palestinian poet, editor, and translator Salma Khadra Jayyusi, has helped bring out in English works by Palestinian women writers like Fadwa Touqan, Sahar Khalifeh, and Liana Badr, along with works by other Arabs. Recently, Garnet Publishing of London began a series called “Arab Women Writers” edited by the Jordanian novelist and critic Fadia Faqir. The five novels published so far are by the Palestinian Liana Badr, the Iraqi Alia Mamdouh, the Syrian Hamida Na’na’, the Egyptian Salwa Bakr, and the Lebanese Huda Barakat … (full long text, August 1996).

Find her and her publications on amazon; on alibris; on LibraryThing; on Banipal 2008; on zoom.info; on pipl; on Google Video-search; on inauthor Google-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Specially her book: Modern Arabic Fiction: An Anthology (Hardcover), by Salma Jayyusi.

… Jayyusi later realized that it was equally important to introduce cogent cultural studies as well into the programme. She then founded East-West Nexus, and her first work in this field was The Legacy of Muslim Spain, a 1,100-page book written by 42 world scholars. Published by Brill in the Netherlands, it has gone into several printings in hardback and paperback and was declared by Brill an absolute bestseller. In 1999, she received a Fulbright Fellowship to do research on the life of the Palestinians in the 20th century as depicted in their personal account writings, and spent the years 1999-2000 doing research in Syria, Jordan and the West Bank, three places with a large concentration of Palestinians. Jayyusi has received several awards for her outstanding achievements and continues to be involved in numerous projects. Her most recent work, My Jerusalem: Essays, Reminiscences and Poems appeared last year. (full text).

Google download books:

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Angelica Edna Calo` Livne – Israel and Italy

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Linked with Israeli theater group encourages Arab and Jewish youngsters to take off their masks, with the Beresheet La’Shalom Foundation BLF.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Angelica Edna Calo Livne is an educator and advocate of peace through arts, among children from different religious and cultural backgrounds. In 2002, Angelica created the Rainbow Theater, in the Upper Galilee of Israel, involving young Jews and Arabs, Christians, Muslims and Druses, who with mime and dance narrate what goes on in the mind of an adolescent living in a country at war. Using their bodies, the actors express their inner thoughts and burning desires to accept people and be accepted as they are. One of Angelica’s projects is to help children physically hurt by terrorist attacks. Angelica Edna Calo Livne, born to a Jewish family in Rome in 1955, has been living in an Israeli Kibbutz, on the border with Lebanon, since she was 20. Married and the mother of four sons, she has been for many years a teacher in multi-cultural schools, and in schools for difficult boys. She obtained her PhD from Tor Vergata University of Rome, Arts in Education to Reach Peace. She also completed a MED in “Integration of the Arts in Education” from Lesley University Boston, Graduate School of Arts. She has obtained several diplomas from different international universities, such as the Tel Hai College, Diploma of “Leadership in Education”; the Tel Hai College, Diploma of “Negotiation and Mediation”; the Seminar Oranim College, Diploma of Director for Educative Theatre; the Seminar Hakibbutzim College, Diploma of Theatre, Acting and Direction; the University “La Sapienza” Studies of Sociology; and High Rabbinical School of Rome Studies of Hebrew Culture and Philosophy … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

She says: … “The most important message that we can give now to all the humanity is that difference is the richness, that dialog is so important now for everybody, not (only) for us in Israel. This is now the imperative, I think” … The Arcobaleno-Rainbow Theatre Group uses the universal language of music and dance to convey their massage. Their play “Beresheet” is a call for peace, tolerance and mutual respect. Edna Angelica Calò Livné is the group’s inspirational founder and artistic director. She believes people can use art and theatre to positively influence the society in which they live … (full text).

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Angelica Edna Calo` Livne – Israel and Italy

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Read also:

Angelica Edna Calo` Livne is the coordinator of all educational activities of the Foundation. Born in Rome, Italy, she was one of the leaders of the youth Zionist Movement Hashomer Hatzair and she studied in the Rabbinical College of Rome. She has a B.A. degree in Social Theatre, M. Ed. in Integrating the Arts in Education and a PhD in Italian Literature. She has received several awards for her activities for peace and was candidate to Saharov Prize by the Euro Parliament and Nobel Prize for Peace 2005. She has written two books in Italian and lectures all over the world about her rich experience of education to peace. (on Beresheet La’Shalom Foundation).

… mi chiamo Angelica Edna Calo Livne, sono nata Roma e vivo da molti anni in Israele in un Kibbuz al confine con il Libano. Ho quattro figli e accanto al mio compagno, Yehuda, nato nel Kibbuz, dedichiamo la nostra vita all’educazione al dialogo, alla pace, alla coesistenza e al rispetto per l’altro. Nel 2004 abbiamo creato la Fondazione “Beresheet LaShalom”  Per educare alla pace attraverso le arti. Fondazione Beresheet LaShalom e’ stata fondata nel 2004. e questi sono i suoi obbiettivi: … (full text).

Yehuda and Edna live in Kibbutz Sasa on the Lebanese border and they have four boys: Yehuda Calo` Livne is the administrator and the executive manager of Beresheet Lashalom. He was born in Kibbutz Sasa. He teaches Communication and Technology and he has 25 years of experience in formal and non-formal education. He specialized in educational work with special needs students. As educational director for three years of the youth movement Hashomer Hatzair in Israel, he led several pedagogical and political projects for peace. Yehuda and Edna founded the Beresheet La’Shalom Foundation BLF (see there the Founders).

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Zahira Kamal – Palestine

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Linked with Women’s Learning Partnership WLP.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Ms. Zahira Kamal is the Director of Palestinian women Research and Documentation Center (UNESCO project). She was appointed as the first Minister of Women’s Affairs in November 2003. Ms. Kamal has written a number of articles and studies on Palestinian women, women’s empowerment, peace and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, women and citizenship, enhancing the role of women machineries. (on RICO).

She was part of the International Womens Commission for a Just and Sustainable Palestinian-Israeli Peace
Joint Steering Committees Meeting, Hosted by IWC Member Antigoni Antigoni, July 12-15, Athens, Greece: IWC members of Palestine: … 3. Zahira Kamal, Director, Women Centre for Studies and Research … (full text).

She says: “It is not strange that historical events of Palestine were the driving force that has determined my life. I grew up hating the Israelis without even knowing or meeting them” … and:  “I believe that women have a strong desire and need for peace. I also believe that we are able to work out our relationships and live with each other, or next to each other, in peace and harmony” … (1000peacewomen).

She works for the Palestinian Ministry of Women’s Affairs PMWA and the Women’s Study Center for Legal and Social Consultation WSCLSC (for both not mention in the net), and for the Palestinian Democratic Union PDU (named on: global security.org; and on wikipedia).

Zahira Kamal and Naomi Chazam were jointly awarded the Peace Builder Award by the Southern California Chapter of Neve Shalom/al-Wahat Salam for their support of peaceful coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians. Kamal is a leader of the Palestinian Democratic Party while Chazam is the deputy speaker of the Israeli Knesset … (full text).

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Zahira Kamal – Palestine

… “We like to stress that the women’s movement is part of the national movement. We believe that both personal and national liberation go hand in hand” … (full text).

She says also: … “I believe in the power of women. Women are grounded in the awareness of the sanctity of all human life” … (on USaid.gov).

Find her and her publications: on answer.com; on Women’s Learning Partnership WLP; on source-watch; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

The Emerging Generation of Leaders.

… With much of the Arab world falling deeper under Islamic control and clamping down on women’s rights, it’s easy to assume that all Arab women are veiled and silent. The idea of an active women’s liberation movement existing within Arab nations seems incongruous. Yet such a movement exists within the Palestinian community, and Zahira Kamal is a principal force behind it. Kamal, the director of gender planning and development for the Palestinian National Authority and a member of the Palestinian Parliament, works for the empowerment of Palestinian women on a broad basis in an environment often hostile to women … (full text).

She writes: … A look at what happens to women in mixed groups (primarily dialogue and track two) may throw some light on why many women prefer all-women groups. As participants of over more than twenty years in a myriad of dialogues and track two activities, our observations are that women tend to be ignored in mixed groups. They are not invited to the planning or agenda setting for the meetings, especially track two meetings. Thus they are not perceived as proactive participants even if they are invited to join the larger groups. As participants, if and when they speak, they are interrupted more than men, and their contributions are frequently attributed to men, as if a comment or proposal coming from a man carries greater legitimacy … (full long text). (My comment: this is totally same with Swiss men).

In the town and village meetings where Zahira Kamal, a member of the negotiating team, often discusses the progress of the Israeli- Palestinian peace talks, men file into the meeting place first, then teenage boys. Finally, young girls and then women enter, almost hesitantly, to stand awkwardly in the comer. It is symbolic of women’s subordinate status in Arab society, and the scene is reproduced daily, over and over again … and: Zahira Kamal has played a large part in this modernization of Palestinian society. Starting from the traditional role of woman as teacher, she become a political activist, aligned with the leftist Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), and since the 1970s has been in the vanguard of the Palestinian women’s movement. She is one of the three women (along with Hanan Ashrawi and Suad Amiry) on the Palestinian team participating in the Middle East peace talks. She is outspoken and direct but, to date, less well known than those delegates to whom the media gravitate. She is concerned with substance, and shies away from the TV cameras … (full long text).

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Nafeesa Al Deek – Palestine

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Nafeesa al-Deek: 1940, Kufr Ne’meh village near Ramallah. Grassroots leader and political figure who spent her life for others. She was able to bring services to her village and surrounding areas that led to her house being used as a center for rehabilitation and teaching, sewing, knitting, embroidery and cooking for local women. As a political activist, she was detained by the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) twice in 1981 and in 1993 she was put on military trial. She overcame illiteracy by convincing an NGO to open up adult-literacy classes in her village in 1981. She raised money to develop the girls’ school in her village in 1986 and convinced her village residents of the importance of teaching their girls. Nominated for the Noble Peace Prize 2005. (on Arab Thought Forum – see their homepage).

She says: “The three divine religions honor human beings. Injustice is not a matter of religious conflict; all I seek to achieve is equal rights for all people”. (1000peacewomen).

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Nafeesa Al Deek – Palestine

She works for the Kafr Ne’meh Women Society KNWS (no internet presence found).

Sorry, beside the text on Arab Thoughr Forum, no other internet presence found for our peacewomen, Nafeesa Al Deek, Palestine (the price for being too much modest).

I could get only the text found on 1000peacewomen: Nafeesa Al Deek was born in 1940. Like many other women in her village, she was married to her cousin at the age of 16. While still pregnant with her third child, her husband walked out on her and immigrated to Brazil, leaving her with a difficult responsibility of raising two sons. Shortly after he had left she gave birth and had a baby daughter. Al Deek had to work and support her family. But since she did not have sufficient educational qualifications she became a seamstress.

Despite these challenging circumstances, she managed to secure a house for her family and to educate her children well. Um Hani, as people call her, began teaching sewing to young girls and women. However, she felt that if she had been educated, she could have done a better job. That is why she strongly supports girls’ education to secure themselves against the hazards of life. Al Deek is said to have learned many of the chapters of the Holy Quran by heart after overhearing the students reciting them. She decided to defeat her illiteracy by enrolling in one of literacy evening classes that were run by the local associations that she has helped to found. Now she is fond of reading celebrated classical poems by Jubran khaleel Jubran and Nizar Kabbani.

Known for her spontaneity and intelligence, Nafeesa Al Deek participated in many demonstrations against the occupation. She recollects one of the incidents where she was arrested by Israeli forces, and says, “I was arrested at the age of 40 when I started going to adult-literacy classes. The interrogator asked me why I wanted to study at this age. I responded to him, ‘Jesus says: learn from birth to tomb.’ I have raised my children to love Palestine, and I am so proud of what I have achieved. They beat me up, but I never felt down. I used my wittiness to get myself out of the difficult circumstances.”

With the aid of a German association, she orchestrated a group of women from her village to found the first women’s association to teach women sewing, needlework and cooking. This project helped many women to generate new work skills and to be self-dependent, a very demanding issue after the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza in 1967. The association employed hundreds of women from Kufr Nime and the surrounding villages.

Um Hani is considered a source of inspiration for her village, and therefore she has won the acclamation of all. She was involved in social and patriotic work since she was still young. She helped to accommodate the refugees who were forced to flee to her village from the coastal areas after the Israeli occupation of Gaza. “I have always felt that I am a soldier standing up for justice for my people, especially women and the less-privileged persons. I pledged myself to fight for women’s rights,” she said. During the 1970’s she wrote a number of patriotic poems about Palestine and encouraged her children to rehearse them. Um Hani has played a distinguished role in her community, and has been incessantly supportive to the education of young children.

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Haya Shalom – Israel

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Linked with Women in Black Movement – worldwide, with the Coalition of Women for Just Peace CWfJP, and with Center for Women’s Global Leadership CWGL (on 15. Jan.).

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Haya Shalom was born on December 4th 1944 in Jerusalem,Israell, to an Israeli-Sephardic fifth generation family. She is a graduate of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in History Studies. As a feminist, human rights activist and a Lesbian, Shalom is especially sensitive to issues concerning women’s oppression. Shalom is one of the first women who joined and assisted the Women in Black Movement, protesting for more than 16 years against the Israeli occupation of Gaza and the West bank. She strongly believes in the efforts she makes towards peace advocacy, despite the difficulties of being often unpopular and positioned at the sidelines of society. She is optimistic about the possibility of effectuating change, even if it is slow and gradual. Shalom’s vision for a peaceful future is based on the initiation of a radical change that will crumble the definitions of the patriarchal society. She emphasizes,:“Not only to achieve minor changes, but to implement a drastic change that will enable the feminine language to brake through and place a different shade on issues concerning solidarity, war and peace, violence against Women, non-violence resistance, Lesbian rights and more” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

She is named as Political Heroe.

She says: “We need to achieve and implement a drastic change that will enable the feminine language to break through and tackle issues concerning solidarity, peace and violence against the rights of women”. (1000peacewomen).

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Haya Shalom – Israel

She works for the Women in Black Movement WiB: find WIB.org, and (old, but with Address to the Security Council of the United Nations): WIB.net, for Coalition of Women for Just Peace CWfJP (homepages in english, in hebrew and in arabic), and for the International Gay and Lesbians Human Rights Commission IGLHRC.

Haya Shalom, a spokesperson for the radical left Israeli group “Women in Black” told IMRA today that Aliza Olmert, wife of Acting PM Ehud Olmert “was never a member of Women in Black, never attended nor was ever invited to attend any activity of Women in Black” … (full text, 14 February 2006).

Haya Shalom on the vigil.

Find her on Google Book-search, and on Google Group-search.

She visited the Center for Antiwar Action, in Kosovo.

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … Between 1980 and 1984 Shalom was an active member of “Kol Haisha” (The Woman`s Voice) in Jeruslem, Co-Organizer of the first women protest against the invasion in Lebanon.

In March 1986 she participated in the International Lesbian Conference in Geneva. This conference inspired her to found the Community of Lesbian Feminists in Israel, in 1987. Its mission was to help advance Women and Lesbians’ rights in Israel. Since its inception in January 1988 the Committee has organized the activities of Women In Black.

In December 1988 Shalom co-founded the Women and Peace Coalition. She was the coordinator of “Bat Adam”, a coalition of women’s organizations to prevent violence against women. Since 1991 Shalom has participated in international women’s and lesbian conferences. Among the issues she has dealt with are solidarity, peace promotion, violence against women, non-violence resistance and the role of lesbians in our society.

From February 1993 to June 1994 she was a coordinator of the International Coalition of Women’s Organizations for Agunah Rights. (Agunah in Hebrew means “a chained” woman: a woman bound in marriage by a husband who refuses to grant her divorce or who is missing and not proven dead).

In March 1995 Shalom initiated and organized the first Women Poets’ Festival. Since 1996 she has been a member of the International board of advisory of the International Gay and Lesbians Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC).

During 1996 and 1997, Shalom was a member of the Board for Bat Shalom, the Women Center for Peace. She was also elected as Chair of Board of Members of “Kol Haisha” (The Women’s Voice), a feminist multicultural center in 1999- 2000. In recognition of her invaluable efforts towards supporting the rights of gays and lesbians, Shalom was awarded the Community Prize of the Gay and Lesbian Community In 2000.

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Hanan Ashrawi – Palestine

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Linked with Israel and Palestine in these times, with Israel and Palestine on my blogs, with  Hanan Ashrawi and the Price of Dissent, and with General Union of Palestinian Women GUPW.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Dr Hanan Daoud Khalil Ashrawi (b. October 8, 1946) is a Palestinian legislator, activist, and scholar. She was a protégé and later colleague and close friend of Edward Said. Ashrawi was an important leader during the First Intifada, served as the official spokesperson for the Palestinian Delegation to the Middle East peace process, and has been elected numerous times to the Palestinian Legislative Council. Ashrawi is a member of Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad’s Third Way party. Ashrawi serves on the Advisory Board of several international and local organizations including the World Bank Middle East and North Africa (MENA), United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) and the International Human Rights Council. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in literature in the Department of English at the American University of Beirut. Ashrawi also has a Ph.D. in Medieval and Comparative Literature from the University of Virginia … (full text).

Her political activism on wikipedia; her bio on world-trek and on globetrotter; .

She says: “I do not look at people on the basis of their religion. I believe in the separation between religion and the state”. (1000peacewomen).

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Hanan Ashrawi – Palestine

She works for the Miftah Palestinian Liberation Committee MPLC (no other internet presence dedected); for Women for Peace and Justice in Palestine WPJP (named in: Groups to Hold Silent Vigil to Mourn Palestinian Women and Children, April, 2002; and in an archive list of Indimedia, 8 April 2002); and for the National Reform Committee NRC (named on: local development forum).

Watch her video: Riz Khan – Hanan Ashrawi (on english Al Jazeera), 25 Apr 07, 17.40 min.

Find her and her publications on amazon; on Google Video-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Arabs & Israel 8679: Hanan Ashrawi for the P.A., oct. 4, 2002.

She says also: … As a teacher myself, as an academic, I’ve always felt it’s a learning and teaching situation; but one thing I think that comes through is the confidence that comes from self-respect. To demand respect of others you have to respect yourself and you have to be confident  to stand up also to injustice and not to accept it, not to be intimidated. I’ve always told my students, and I enjoy that, that they can question, that they can provoke. Even when I was a minister I always told them, “Provoke reality, don’t acquiesce to it. Challenge it. Speak up.” The courage to speak out, not to be complacent, not to accept the givens, not to accept also, as my father said, the limits. “To be daring,” he said, “be daring in the pursuit of right, of what is right, justice.” And a sense of daring, of questioning, of not being deflected, comes also from a recognition that your humanity is what you have in common with others. There is a common language that emerges, regardless of whether it’s Arabic, English, French, German, Japanese. There is a common human language that recognizes no boundaries. At the same time, the human will and the human spirit are the determining factors in everything you do. There will always be small-minded, narrow-minded, power-driven, power-hungry people who will try to set limits, who will try to give you constraints. And the human spirit to refuse such constraints. The willingness to take risks and to vindicate your humanity, it seems to me this is essential … (full long 5 page interview text – see also the first page).

Sorry, I stop here pasting actual or past articles from different writers inside or outside of the Israel-Palestine communities. I do not want amplify the already running battle of justifications, mutual accusations, re-writing the history, belonging to particular viewpoins who of each side should be right or wrong … I just stop here the play for my blogs.

(Here only what’s on the website of 1000peacewomen): Hanan Ashrawi was born in 1946 in Nablus in an Anglican Christian family. Her father, Da’ud Mikhail, was the leader of Sulayman Al-Nabulsi’s National Socialist Party who settled his family in Ramallah after 1948 war.

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Heide Göttner-Abendroth – Germany

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Linked with the International Academy Hagia, with Hannelore Vonier – Germany and USA, and with Matriarchy.Info (will appear on Jan. 6, 2009).

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

… Heide Goettner-Abendroth has been working in this field for 30 years, and is the most well-known matriarchy scholar in the world. She has developed a coherent theoretical basis that combines the different aspects of matriarchy research, convincingly presenting it as a new socio-cultural science. In this way she has become the founding mother of Modern Matriarchal Studies. Her own matriarchy research, and that of many international guest lecturers, is presented dynamically and attractively in her seminars, as well as in international study trips offered by Academy HAGIA … (full text).

… In 1980 she was visiting professor at the University of Montreal, Canada, and in 1992, at the University of Innsbruck, Austria. In 1993 she received a scholarship from the University of Bremen, Germany for her research. Since 1998 she is member of the Institute of Archaeomythology in California (USA). In 2003, she organized and guided the First World Congress on Matriarchal Studies: “Societies in Balance” in Luxembourg, Europe (sponsorship: Marie Josée Jacobs, Minister for Women’s Affairs of Luxembourg), and in 2005, she guided the Second World Congress on Matriarchal Studies: “Societies of Peace” in Texas, USA (sponsorship: Genevieve Vaughan). In 2005, she was elected by the “Initiative 1000 PeaceWomen” as one of these women from all over the world. (full text). (Detailed Biography).

Heide Göttner-Abendroth (b. 1941 in Germany) is a German feminist advocating a branch of feminist anthropology known as Matriarchy Studies (also Modern Matriarchal Studies), focussing on the study of matriarchal or matrilineal societies … (full text).

Find her also on the german wikipedia.

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Heide Göttner-Abendroth – Germany

She works for the International Academy Hagia.

Her website: in german; and in english.

She says: “Matriarchy presents us a well balanced, egalitarian and peaceful society without wars of conquest and the rule of dominance. I am convinced that matriarchy is needed for a humane world”. (1000peacewomen).

A Radically Different World View is Possible.

Did matriarchal forms of social organization exist in Catal Hüyük?

The relationship between Modern Matriarchal Studies and the Gift Paradigm.

Find her and her publications on english wikipedia /bibliography); on alibris; on Library Thing; on the german wikipedia; on her page of 1000peacewomen (scroll down); on amazon; on inauthor Google-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

She writes: Despite all the hostility directed against modern Matriarchal Studie, it is not possible to disregard it findings. It presents us with a well balanced, egalitarian and basically peaceful society which can exist without life-destroying inventions like wars od conquest and the rule of dominance. This is why I am convinced that matriarchy will be successful in the struggle for a humane world. (on Societies of Peace).

She writes also: … Summary of the criteria of the matriarchal society:

  • Economic criteria: society with self-supporting gardening or agriculture; land, house are property of the clan, no privat property; women have the power of disposition over the source of norishment; constant adjustment of the level of wealth by the circulation of the vital goods in form of gifts at festivals – societies of reciprocity.
  • Social criteria: matriarchal clans, which are held together by matrilinearity and matrilocality; mutual marriage between two clands; visiting marriage with additional sexual freedom for both sexes; social fatherhood – non hierarchical, horizontal societies of kinship.
  • Political criteria: principle of consensus in the clan-house, on the level of the village, and on the regional level; delegates as bearers of communication, not as decision-takers; absence of classes and structures of domination – egalitarian societies of consensus.
  • Cultural criteria: concret belief in rebirth into the same clan, cult of ancestresses and ancestors; worship of Mother Earth and the Goddess of Cosmos; divinity of the entire world; absence of dualistic world view and morality; everything in life is part of the symbolic system – sacral societies as cultures of the Goddess.

… (full 8 pages text, 2004).

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Saskia Kouwenberg – Netherlands

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Linked with East Timor and Indonesia Action Network ETAN, with the International Fellowship of Reconciliation IFOR, and with IFOR’s Women Peacemaker’s Program WPP.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Saskia Kouwenberg has spent 25 years – half her life – as an activist. Everything from indigenous people’s land rights, to national independence, to anti-nuclear and anti-war work has been the focus of her campaigning. Although not affiliated to one group, she has worked alongside Amnesty International, the United Nations, and Moluccan and East Timorese organizations, in all kinds of ways. From mediating in conflict resolution classes to trespassing on military bases, Saskia will try any method to achieve her goal of a better, safer, fairer world. It is not very often that you meet someone who, over their 52  years, has been a barefoot hippy, spent six months as a novice nun (“I would have stayed longer, if they had not thrown me out!”), made movies, smuggled (more of that later), been a monkey-keeper, marcher, conflict resolver, anti-nuclear and anti-imperialist people’s rights campaigner. Yet today I find myself in the lucky position of talking to one of Amsterdam’s unsung heroines. Saskia Kouwenberg has been an “independent human rights activist,” as she calls herself, for nearly 25 years now. “I was not somebody who said on their twelfth birthday ‘I want to be a peace activist when I grow up.’ In my village politics were non-existent,” she says, as she makes tea in the kitchen of her canal-side, Oud-West flat. It is a nice pot of Tension Tamer, appropriate for a woman who has seen more than her fair share of conflict hot spots. This is the place where she has lived on and off, between stints of campaigning, for the last 25 years … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Saskia Kouwenberg – Netherlands

She says: “Responsibility does not end at borders. I cannot see boundaries. The only boundaries are that you have 24 hours in the day and you cannot do everything you want to do in your life”. (1000peacewomen).

Tijdens manifestatie op de Dam, 15 feb. (20039, Toespraak Saskia Kouwenberg.

Hulp door militairen is vaak funest voor hulpverleners, by Saskia Kouwenberg: Militairen in conflictgebieden krijgen steeds vaker civiele taken. Dat kan leiden tot een gevaarlijke verwarring van rollen, vindt Saskia Kouwenberg, mede doordat de situatie in oorlogen steeds onoverzichterlijker wordt omdat er zoveel partijen bij betrokken zijn … (full long text).

She writes: Militairen in conflictgebieden krijgen steeds vaker civiele taken. Dat kan leiden tot een gevaarlijke verwarring van rollen, vindt Saskia Kouwenberg, mede doordat de situatie in oorlogen steeds onoverzichterlijker wordt omdat er zoveel partijen bij betrokken zijn … (full text, 18-08-2004).

Find her and her publications on Film Database; on PSYCHOLOOG direct.be; on pipl; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Rapport Blix/El Baradei geen enkele invloed op oorlogsvoornemen Bush, 07-03-2003.

(East Timor-) POSTERS FROM SOUTHERN CROSS UNIVERSITY (AUSTRALIA).

(on 1000peacewomen 2/2):  … The village she is talking about is Zundert, a farming place down in Noord-Brabant, where she was born into a vegetable trading family. It is famous for one thing only, being the birthplace of Vincent van Gogh – not necessarily the kind of place you would expect a political activist to come out of, among all that slow-moving agriculture, but Saskia is convinced that her life’s mission found its roots back there.

She had a comfortable, middle-class upbringing when, at the age of 19, she went off on a round-the-world trip, along the hippy trail. “I did not go as a hippy but I came back as one.

In India and Afghanistan especially, virtually everything that I saw there questioned what I was brought up with. I met people with totally different views on life, and they thought they were right too. That was a very big surprise to me. Plus, I saw incredible poverty. I did not know about these things.”

After that, she felt she could not be contained by her nationality, a fact which goes a long way to explain her peripatetic lifestyle since: “From then on I felt like a world citizen. I felt that responsibility does not end at borders: where I am born, the village, or the family. I cannot see boundaries.”

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Grace Paley – USA (1922 – 2007)

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Grace Paley has passed away on August 22, 2007

Linked with the War Resisters League WRL, and with Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom WILPF.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Grace Paley (December 11, 1922 – August 22, 2007) was an American short story writer, poet and political activist. Biography: Born as Grace Goodside in the Bronx, Paley’s Jewish parents, Isaac and Manya Ridnyik Goodside, Anglicized the family name from Gutseit on immigrating from Ukraine. The family spoke Russian and Yiddish along with English. The youngest of the three Goodside children (sixteen and fourteen years younger than brother and sister Victor and Jeanne, respectively), Paley was a tomboy as a child … // … Paley continues the stories of Faith and her neighbors in the collection Later the Same Day (1985). All three volumes were gathered in her 1994 Collected Stories, which was a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. Paley’s other honors include a 1961 Guggenheim Fellowship for Fiction, the Edith Wharton Award (1983), the Rea Award for the Short Story (1993) the Vermont Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts (1993), and the Jewish Cultural Achievement Award for Literary Arts (1994). In 1988 American composer Christian Wolff set eight poems from Leaning Forward (1985) for soprano, bass-baritone, clarinet/bass-clarinet and cello … (full long text, has been updated on 27 December 2008).

She said: “I think it’s like a dark, dark cloud and a period of great anxiety. If we lose, it’s horrible, and if we win, it’s horrible. Those of us in this movement want every soldier saved and home”. (1000peacewomen).

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Grace Paley – USA (1922 – 2007)

She worked for the War Resisters League, for the Greenwich Village Peace Center, (named on: war resisters.org, on PEACEMEAL: A COOK BOOK FROM THE GREENWICH VILLAGE PEACE CENTER), and for the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom WILPF.

Watch her on this video: Grace Paley at the Organ Barn ‘02, 02.58 min, Sep 16, 2007.

How aptly named: Grace Paley. For “grace” is perhaps the most accurate, if somewhat poetic, term to employ in speaking of this gifted writer who has concentrated on short, spare fiction through her career of nearly five decades … (full long text).

She said also:… “I’m optimistic because of that one moment when the whole world came out against the war. That has made me optimistic, but apart from that, I have a lot of anxiety about the state of the world. When you think of the things that have happened in Rwanda and Darfur, that are still happening in Darfur, it’s very discouraging. The degree of just plain murder is incredible. What’s happening in Iraq, where they’re all killing each other, is just terrifying. I’m neither optimistic nor pessimistic; I’m just on my knees hoping that things change somehow” … (full interview text).

Find her and her publications on amazon; on alibris; on us.mac millan; on wikipedia /bibliography, and on wikipedia /further reading; on Google Video-search; on inauthor Google-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Grace Paley, the celebrated writer and social activist whose short stories explored in precise, pungent and tragicomic style the struggles of ordinary women muddling through everyday lives, died on Wednesday at her home in Thetford Hill, Vt. She was 84 and also had an apartment in Manhattan. Ms. Paley had been ill with breast cancer for some time, her literary agent, Elaine Markson, said yesterday … (full long text, Aug. 23, 2007).

… Popular and respected by teachers of writing, Grace Paley’s stories have been used as models in writing workshops. Her stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Ms Fiction, Mother Jones and other magazines. She began teaching in the early 1960’s with courses at Columbia and Syracuse Universities and then became a member of the faculty of Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, New York. She has also taught at the graduate school of City College in New York.
Much of Grace Paley’s life has been spent in political action. A member of the War Resisters League, she opposed American involvement in the Vietnam War and was a member of a peace mission to Hanoi. She attended the World Peace Conference in 1974 and in 1985 visited Nicaragua and El Salvador, after having campaigned against the U.S. government’s policies toward these countries. She was one of “The White House Eleven,” who in December 1978 were arrested in December 1978 for unfurling an anti-nuclear banner on the White House lawn. She was fined and given a suspended sentence … (full text).

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Jacqueline Pitanguy – Brazil

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Linked with Cidadania, Estudo, Pesquisa, Informação e Ação CEPIA.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Jacqueline Pitanguy, a sociologist and political scientist, is the Founder and Director of Cidadania, Estudo, Pesquisa, Informação e Ação (CEPIA), a non-governmental organization based in Rio de Janeiro. At CEPIA Ms. Pitanguy coordinates research on gender issues and facilitates advocacy and educational programs relating to violence against women and reproductive health. She has been a Professor at the Pontificia Universidade Catolica de Rio de Janeiro and at Rutgers University, where she held the Laurie New Jersey Chair in Women’s Studies from 1991-92. She held a cabinet position as President of the National Council for Women’s Rights (1986-89), designing and implementing public policies to improve women’s condition in Brazil … (full text).

… “Ms. Pitanguy is a co-founder and member of the Board of Directors of the Commission on Citizenship and Reproduction, Commission on Citizenship and Reproduction based in Sao Paulo. She is a member of the Boards of the Inter-American Dialogue, the Society for International Development, and the Women’s Learning Partnership, and is currently the Chair of the Boards of the Global Fund for Women, and of CARE-Brazil, where she recently assumed the presidency. She was also a member of the International Human Rights Council, headed by former President Jimmy Carter, of the International Advisory Group of the MacArthur Foundation, and of the Institute for Education of UNESCO. “Ms. Pitanguy has published extensively and is frequently interviewed by the national and international media on issues related to women’s rights, and participates in numerous national and international conferences. She is fluent in French, Spanish and English. Portuguese is her native language”. (She is) Member of the Steering Committee, World Movement for Democracy … (full text).

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Jacqueline Pitanguy – Brazil

She works for Cidadania, Estudo, Pesquisa, Informação e Ação CEPIA (in portugese) /Citizenship, Studies, Information, Action (see its Google Scholar search-results).

Watch this video: an Interview with Jacqueline Pitanguy, time not indicated, June 2, 2008.

She says: “The characteristic of the feminist movement is the search of the interlocution with others. Wars happen when the channel of expression of conflicts fails”. (1000peacewomen).

Jacqueline Pitanguy, a sociologist and political scientist, is the Founder and Director of Cidadania, Estudo, Pesquisa, Informação e Ação (CEPIA), a non-governmental organization based in Rio de Janeiro. At CEPIA Ms. Pitanguy coordinates research on gender issues and facilitates advocacy and educational programs relating to violence against women and reproductive health. She has been a Professor at the Pontificia Universidade Catolica de Rio de Janeiro and at Rutgers University, where she held the Laurie New Jersey Chair in Women’s Studies from 1991-92. She held a cabinet position as President of the National Council for Women’s Rights (1986-89), designing and implementing public policies to improve women’s condition in Brazil … (full text).

She was presenter for Reflections on the International Women’s Movement: 10 Years After Beijing, May 10, 2005.

Find her and her publications on Google Video-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

She writes: … When we think of human security as a concept that is molded on a power arena, we can understand why it takes certain meanings in certain countries and not in others. We can understand why at a particular time and in a particular country it’s understood basically as related to protection against terrorism and why, for instance, in this same moment in another country, such as Brazil, it is deeply related with food security. Human security is not a neutral concept. It is also important to note that if a certain conceptualization of human security is dominant in a certain place it doesn’t mean that it is consensual. And this gives us hope of transformation. Indeed, different sectors— representing different visions and different interests—interact, struggle, and negotiate at national and international arenas around the definition of human security because this is a key concept. It’s a key concept because it affects budget allocation, legitimizes governmental policies in security, and affects the allocation of priorities in public policies and many other government actions. It is a key concept for local and global governance directly affecting people’s everyday lives. So I would be very careful in handling the concept of human security because it can and has been used very differently, and for very different purposes, at different moments and in different countries … (full text, 4 pdf pages, not dated).

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Durga Devi – India

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Linked with Social Uplift Through Rural Action SUTRA.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Durga Devi (born 1956) always wanted to do something socially productive. Despite her husband’s protests, in 1979 she contacted and joined the Social Work and Research Centre. Since then, she has not looked back: she has formed women’s groups in her district and was instrumental in forming a coalition of women’s groups under the banner, Sarva Shakti Sangam, a watchgroup over atrocities against women.Durga Devi lives in Nahan, Sirmour district, Himachal Pradesh. She was born in 1956 in Shambhuwala village to Nar Bahadura police officer, and Sevati Devi, a prominent representative of the Mahila Mandal (women’s group) in their village. She has four brothers and four sisters.

Durga attended a school located in another village: it was a distance that her parents could not afford to continue to send her, and the fact that she never managed to complete her matriculation remains a matter of regret. When her education was abruptly curtailed, Durga joined a one-year tailoring course in her own village. But stitching and sewing were not where her heart was – she wished to do something socially productive, like her mother had … // … She says: “Often I have to face threats and harassment, but I am not scared. I work with truth in my mind, and it is this truth that gets justice for the innocent”.(1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found for Durga Devi, India

She works for Sarva Shakti Sangam, and for Social Uplift Through Rural Action SUTRA, see also profile on barefoot college.org with 11 pdf-pages.

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … Married off at the age of 15, Durga became convinced that her dreams would lie fallow. But intrinsic resilience led to keep looking out for a job. Finally, in 1979, eight years into her marriage, she found an opening in the Social Work and Research Centre (SWRC) in Jagjit Nagar, Solan district. Her husband was incensed: a woman’s place, he believed, was inside the home. Her children–she had, by then, a son and a daughter, and another daughter after she began work – were also very young. But Durga stuck to her ground and set off to work with young daughter in town.

Her husband’s prejudices seemed mirrored everywhere. People looked at her strangely, and would even try to incite her husband against her. He started pressuring her to stop working. But Durga prevailed, working very hard to create a difficult balance between home and work.

Her first challenge at the SWRC was to set up a childcare centre and to conduct tailoring lessons. Her workplace was about 20 km from the SWRC. After this, she traveled to several backward and far-flung villages such as Dhakariyana, Khadin and Thimber. In 1983, she formed a Mahila Mandal Samooha (women’s group), again pitting herself against a battery of prejudices from both men and women. Working hard to convince the women of the need for empowerment, she was soon made supervisor of the program taking full responsibility for it. The voluntary organization SUTRA (Social Uplift Through Rural Action) also helped her, heralding the beginning of her association with SUTRA.

Durga soon realized that the primary problem the women faced was the time they spent in front of chulhas (stoves), inhaling the smoke in the absence of chimneys. She looked for and hit upon a solution – smokeless chulhas. In 1983, she went to Khori in Haryana to get trained on how to use smokeless chulhas, to pass the knowledge on to the women she worked with. Thereafter, in every place that she set up women’s groups, Durga began emphasizing the imperative to use these chulhas and trained women.

Herself empowered by her status, she began to fully understand the social, economic and political problems that women faced. In 1989, she was appointed branch coordinator of the Nalgadh division of the organization, which gave her the chance to establish a separate identity and space for herself. The closer she came to the women in the district, the more she realized that male alcoholism in the area was a major problem that the women had to deal with on an ongoing basis. Male drunkenness brings with it physical and emotional attrition; they also spent all their money on liquor and gambling, contributing little to the home.

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Savitri MacCuish – Netherlands

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Linked with The Bhagavad Gita – Part Three.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Savitri MacCuish, born in Scotland in 1959, lives in the Netherlands as the founder and director of the World Peace Flame Foundation and Life Foundation International. She has pioneered unique detraumatization programs in crisis areas and teaches practical peacemaking techniques in workshops all over the world. In 1999, she was the driving force behind the creation of the eternal World Peace Flame (WPF), lit by peacemakers from five continents. The WPF burns in monuments in cities around the world. In 2004, it brought together ambassadors from every country to sign a statement for peace. There is one key event that moved Savitri MacCuish to become the sensitive peacemaker she is today, without fear to face the suffering of people wherever she is confronted with it: One day in 1994 she was driving in war-torn Bosnia, working for the British non-governmental organization (NGO) Life Foundation. She was stopped by a group of old women in black who stood in the middle of the road and stared at her, not saying a word. One woman came to the open window of the van, which was loaded with aid material … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

Savitri MacCuish is  Global Ambassador of Peace, international speaker, retreat leader and author, Savitri trains people in business and organisations around the world in authentic leadership and management skills. As one of the pioneers of the Dru’s war-zone detraumatisation work, Savitri has seen much suffering in the world. Her search for an authentic symbol of hope and peace has led her to become the prime instigator of the World Peace Flame and she is now Director of the World Peace Flame Foundation and Dru Netherlands. (on her Homepage).

She says: “Peace cannot be delegated! It begins with you and me, and the choices we make today. (1000peacewomen).

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Savitri MacCuish – Netherlands

She works for the World Peace Flame Foundation WPF (site under reconstruction), and for the Life Foundation International (named on UNESCO).

Her book: Guide to Personal Freedom: Nine key principles for inner transformation, by Savitri MacCuish and Anita Goswami, Paperback 100p  ISBN 90-805999-7-2 – This book is a treasure trove of practical advice, techniques and wisdom; a guide to your personal freedom. Savitri and Anita share nine important principles and techniques to re-create and nurture you, to redirect your life, to make it an expression of an inner revolution that is necessary to meet the new challenges in life … (full text).

Find her on Google Book-search; on Google Group-search.

(on 1000peacewomen 2/2): … Savitri offered her food and seeds for planting, but there was no reaction, no thanks. Savitri could hardly stand her glance any more and felt like panicking. Suddenly it came like a flash to her mind: “What if this were my mother?” In that moment something changed, “Then I looked straight into her eyes, straight at her pain,” Savitri says. “It was a healing moment. I realized that you can heal people simply by not being afraid to be with their pain.” Still silent, the old women started patting Savitri’s hand.

Savitri MacCuish calls this moment a “turning point” in her life, although she had been working with traumatized people for years. Before that she travelled the world, training horses to Olympic standard and later studying management training and working as a successful businesswoman in the USA and Middle East. In 1986, at the age of 27, she returned to her home country, Scotland. “All the money could not buy what I was looking for. At the end of the day there was a big empty space. Something was missing.”

What she was missing Savitri found first in her work with women survivors of incest and rape and later with the North Wales based Life Foundation. This non-governmental peace-making organization works in the daily life of war zones to promote the use of self-help approaches for physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being. The Life Foundation is guided by the motto, “Transform the world by giving people the tools to transform themselves,” and is inspired by the life and work of Mahatma Gandhi.

Savitri started to develop techniques that most peacemaking efforts do not provide, including self-help tools that enable people to transform painful emotions into personal empowerment and creativity, and to build their sense of self-worth and confidence: “All human beings disagree, but it is when the emotions get in the way that disagreements – from family arguments to national wars- become so difficult to solve.”

Savitri began working in the war and crisis areas of the 1990s, and the program has included the Balkan states, North Caucasus, Sudan, South Africa, Northern Ireland and more recently Nepal. A main focus is to train and support aid workers, local peace workers and community leaders suffering from burn-out.

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Landon Pearson – Canada

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Landon Carter (Lucy) Pearson, OC BA, MEd, LLD, DU (born November 16, 1930) is a former Canadian senator and a children’s rights advocate. She was appointed to the Senate in 1994 by Jean Chrétien and sat with the Liberal caucus. She retired from the Senate on November 16, 2005 upon reaching the mandatory retirement age of 75 … // … In 1974 she cofounded Children Learning for Living, a prevention program in children’s mental health. It operated for 23 years through the Ottawa Board of Education until 1998. She was a school trustee in both Canada and India; and has been involved in community-based programs such as Mobile Creches for Working Mothers’ Children, a child care service for the children of nomadic construction workers in New Delhi and Bombay. In 1979, she was Vice-Chairperson of the Canadian Commission for the International Year of the Child and edited the Commission’s report, For Canada’s Children: National Agenda for Action … (full text).

She is named as Better World Heroe. Her Bio there.

Her website about her life and work.

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Landon Pearson – Canada

She works for the Canadian Council on Children and Youth, for the Canadian Coalition for the Rights of Children, and for the Landon Pearson Resource Centre for the Study of Childhood and Children’s Rights LPRC (read: its official opening on on June 1 2006).

She says: “There can be no global security without respect for children. We have to be more than just observers of children’s suffering, we have to be partners with them in their struggles” … and: “We must pay attention to the millions of children of this generation who are caught up in armed conflicts. How can we protect them from the worst consequences of war? And when hostilities cease, how can we take the war out of them? By eliminating landmines, controlling the sale of small arms, raising the age of recruitment … are all essential measures. By reuniting children with their families and providing programs of physical and psychological rehabilitation” … and: “I’ve never ceased to be amazed at the survival skills of poor children. I’ve learned how much children can actually do for themselves if only we provide the necessary means. That part is up to us”. (Quotes on Better World Heroes).

… Now, at the start of a new century, Senator Landon Mackenzie Pearson sees a glimmer of hope-a dawning recognition that children too have human rights, including the right to be heard. Senator Pearson can trace the growth of this awareness in her own life. Born in Toronto in 1930, she grew up in a small Ontario town. There the sufferings of children registered in her awareness only in her grandmother’s exhortations to “remember the starving Armenians” when she wouldn’t finish her dinner … (full text).

She says also: … “I’ve never ceased to be amazed at the survival skills of poor children” … (full text).

… She has also made a substantial contribution to our understanding of child development through her writing, in particular her book, Children of Glasnost (1990), which gives an in-depth understanding of what it is like to grow up in the Soviet Union, and how that is changing as Russian society becomes more open. A second book, Letters from Moscow, was published in 2003 … (full text).

Find her and her publications; on inauthor Google-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search … and her bio on Foreign Affairs.

… although it is not the University’s mandate to develop social policy, it is the organization’s role to learn what is needed to inform policy.
The Landon Pearson Resource Centre will provide just this opportunity.Located in A735 Loeb, the resource centre will make Pearson’s documents available to students and faculty, and will promote and host activities that address issues relating to children, childhood and communities.  As Carleton’s newest adjunct professor, Pearson will also be available to meet with students and share her knowledge with members of the University community. She said the centre would provide an opportunity to engage the whole community and create the synergy needed to bring respect for children … (full text).
And: Campus news, Online exclusive: Senator Landon Pearson leaves legacy at Carleton, Creates resource centre for the study of children’s rights, Dec. 05, 2005. (full text).

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Marion Thuswald – Austria

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Marion Thuswald was born in 1978 in Austria. In 1997 and 1998, after completing her training in social education, she worked as an Austrian Peace Service volunteer with a youth peace project in the war-torn city of Vukovar in Croatia. Back in Austria she became a member of the staff and later the board of the Austrian Peace Service. For a while she also served as managing director. From Vienna she visits and coordinates the team of Austrian Peace Service volunteers in Vukovar. She maintains and strengthens contacts she made in Croatia with people needing help, among others, many Roma (on IFOR.org).

She says: “All people are equal, distinct, and unique”.

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Ihre Diplomarbeit: Betteln als Beruf? … ein Interview / (Her dissertation: mendicity as a profession? … an interview in german) – Sorry, no downloadable photo found for Marion Thuswald, Austria.

She works for the Österreichische Friedensdienste ÖFD /Austrian Peace Service, for the International Fellowship of Reconciliation IFOR, and for the Youth Peace Group Danube YPGD.

(1000peacewomen): Marion Thuswald was born in Austria in 1978. In 1997 and 1998, after completing her training in social education, she worked as a peace service volunteer for ÖFD (Austrian Peace Service) with a youth peace project in the war-torn city of Vukovar in Croatia. Back in Austria, she became a member of the staff and later of the board of the ÖFD. She also was the managing director for some time. She maintains and strengthens contacts she made in Croatia with people needing help, many Roma among others. After finishing school, Marion Thuswald was drawn to Southeast Europe, where she wanted to help shape her world and make her effortl and energy available for something worthwhile. She went with the Austrian Peace Service association for a year as a peace volunteer ito the most destroyed city in Croatia: Vukovar.

There she supported the Youth Peace Group Danube (YPGD), an interethnic youth project founded by local young people. With much tact and teamwork she motivated the local people to be active themselves. She strengthened their self-confidence while keeping herself in the background.

Among Marions’s strengths are awareness and pragmatism. She keeps her feet on the ground and is constantly aware of her privileged position, in which she is allowed to “help.” For her, peace service means living with people, not feeling sorry for them.

Marion directs theater workshops and intercultural summer camps in Austria with Serb, Croatian and Austrian children. Back in Austria she became a staff member, later a board member of the Austrian Peace Service in Vienna. For a while she also acted as managing director. Based in Vienna, she visits and coordinates the team of Austrian peace volunteers in Vukovar every two to three months.

In this way she has given other young women the courage to participate as well. That is very important because they are crucial connections and persons of trust for the staff members and girls there.

As an active young woman who has taken her life in her hands, she is a model in Austria as well as in Croatia. It is not surprising that almost all those working as peace volunteers in Croatia are young men, as the volunteer year counts as alternative military service for them, and war areas seem to be predestined for men.

Women as active thinkers and helpers are especially needed in just such challenging places. Marion Thuswald builds and strengthens the contacts that she was able to make in Croatia with, among others, many Roma. Some of the young people from the YPGD are now working, for example, in other organizations in leading positions or have found work abroad. She arranged the connections despite her ambivalence: was it not her responsibility to encourage people to stay? But not at any price, because “…staying must be voluntary, not forced.” (on 1000peacewomen).

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Naseeb Mohammad Shaikh – India

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Naseeb Mohammad Shaikh lost 11 members of the family she had married into, and 14 members of her parents’ families during the 2002 Gujarat riots. Since then, she has been a prime initiator of peace and communal harmony, leading the fight for rights for the minority communities in and around Gujarat’s Kalol region. At last count, she was fighting 37 cases of atrocities, including ones by the police. She comes from a well-off Muslim family of landowners.

Born in Delol village in Panchmahal, Gujarat, she married Mohammad-bhai of the same village in 1989. At the time of the Gujarat communal riots of 2002, she had a daughter of 13 and a son aged 11.

During the riots, 11 members of the family she married into, and 14 members of her parents’ families, were butchered, including her parents, her husband and her daughter, who was raped in front of her relatives before being killed. Naseeb escaped death only because she was in hospital undergoing a minor surgery. She was left with her son and ostracism from her village. She had to seek refuge in a rehabilitation colony in Kalol, which is where she has been since.

But unlike most refugees in the colony, Naseeb refused to let the magnitude of her loss overwhelm her into paralysis. Finding many widowed women and helpless children, she took it upon herself to help them. She started small, listening to their stories, taking them to hospital, filing papers for compensation, liaising with the relief agencies – she became pretty much a one-woman army as far as the refugees’ requirements were concerned … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found of Naseeb Mohammad Shaikh – India.

Naseeb Mohammad Shaikh did not allow her incalculable personal loss and grief to overwhelm her social conscience-if she lost her family to the 2002 Gujarat riots, so did thousands of others.

She works for Aman Samuday *.

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … After moving out of the rehabilitation colony with the help of local social workers, Naseeb shifted into a small house in Kalol with her son. There, she accepted a more substantial role as a social worker, becoming very active in highlighting legal cases and rehabilitation issues to various agencies and the media.

Soon after, Naseeb started work with SEWA. Naseeb was with the social organization for six months, during which time she traveled around the villages in the vicinity to work with riot-affected women and children. No constructive change in the lives of the people was possible for obvious reasons, and although Naseeb managed to make life easier for the people she met and interacted with, a limit soon imposed itself. In April 2003, she quit SEWA to join Aman Samuday, an organization trying to propel people towards peace and communal harmony through awareness. Naseeb fit neatly into the scheme of things.

She moved from village to village, spreading the message of peace, justice, communal harmony, and a common humanity. Her own experiences were the greatest example she placed in front of the affected: she plunged headlong into issues concerning the marginalized.

One of her first campaigns was against a local maulana, a Muslim cleric who ran a relief camp. The frisson began when the maulana was distributing handcarts to the affected, hoping that they would use the carts to start small businesses and become self-sufficient. When Naseeb approached the maulana for a cart, he abused her, charging her with conduct unbecoming of a Muslim widow. His position in the community ensured that he received more support than Naseeb did. She retaliated by mobilizing a small army of women to demand their rights.

When in Eral village, she was confronted with the age-old caste divide – Dalits were refused drinking water from the public handpumps. Negotiating with the local panchayat, Naseeb managed to get a handpump sanctioned only for the Dalit community. In Eral, she built a home for Pushpaben, an elderly Dalit woman who lacked shelter. Aman Samuday provided only the cost of materials; Naseeb herded together enough people from the community to build the house.

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Rosa María Herrera de Hernandez – Venezuela and Mexico

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

She has been a worker since her adolescence and she, herself, has experienced exploitation. A youth activist and promoter of human rights, Rosa María Herrera was born in Mexico, and now she works with and for women from poor Venezuelan communities: they support preventive health projects, create groups for developing ways of improving their quality of life and work for the right to a dignified life. She was born in 1945, in Zacatecas, Mexico. She was the second daughter of ten brothers and sisters. Her father was a farmer and her mother a seamstress. There was a strong Catholic influence which transmitted to her values of respect, responsibility and honesty. “I grew up in a strong family where there was a lot of respect. My parents set an example that was vital. My life took place in a healthy environment, in an extended family with the company of grand parents, uncles, aunts and cousins” … She says: “Each person has own rights and responsibilities, but we will be able to demand the first ones and assume the second ones only if we are aware of them”. (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found of Rosa María Herrera de Hernandez – Venezuela /Mexico

She works for Salud para Guayana (Health for Guayana), named on Nueva Prensa.com.

(1000peacewomen 2/2) … Rosa Maria Herrera de Hernandez had a basic education but the family resources were not enough for her to continue with her schooling. As she grew up she felt the need to look for a job. She wanted to help her parents to pay for the needs of herself and her sisters and brothers. Her father lost his job. “On October 7, 1962 when I was 16, I went with my sister, who was 14 years old to Mexico City. The day after we arrived, we both obtained work in a dress factory owned by a cousin. I learned the trade of seamstress and remained there until July, 1970”.

In 1965 she got to know the Young Working Catholics Organization (JOC) which she joined as an active member. “I have been a worker since my adolescence and have experienced exploitation for myself. I worked 10 hours each day, 56 hours per week, for a miserable salary, which was not enough even for basic needs. I lived with many other girls and boys who were experiencing the same reality and I realized then that I belonged to the working class”.

“In 1969 I went to Nicaragua for three months on an exchange trip with the JOC of that country, and during the trip I got to know El Salvador and Guatemala”. In 1970 she was elected coordinator of JOC at a national level and in August 1973 she became coordinator for Latin-America. “From then on I had the opportunity to travel to almost all the countries in Latin America to work with young people”.

As trade union leader Rosa Maria joined actions by militants in three factories, two of them where the majority were women. There was a great organisational effort, confrontations with groups and institutions and “ those who apparently defended the workers and had turned against them. During these processes the most important thing was money. Rights were not respected. It was not a fight for just a few days”. She participated in exchange trips to various African countries. In September 1975, she married a Venezuelan militant worker and moved to Venezuela the same year.

“I always say that JOC was my school and that experience made me take the decision to be committed to the cause for the rest of my life, no matter in what country. I developed and joined an infinite number of social actions and became aware of the realities of the world of the work. In every place the workers, especially the women, experienced conditions of exploitation and violation of their rights”.

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María Inmaculada Lacarra Cabrerizo – Venezuela

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

The beginning of her pedagogical work in Venezuela was in the San Judas Tadeu School of Faith and Joy, in Caracas, in a community marked by violence and insecurity. Immersed in popular education since 1976, she initiated, in 1993, the project Education for Peace, the aim of which was to involve the educational community in the resolution of conflicts. Since 1999, she has directed the Mother Emilia School of Maiquetía, in the State of Vargas, where she is the driving force behind the initiative Constructing Peace with Solidarity. Her name is María Inmaculada Lacarra.Máría Inmaculada Lacarra, born in Agreda-Soria, Spain, was a late arrival in the Lacarra-Cobrerizo family. She has only one sister. As a small child she experienced the effects of the Civil War. In spite of that, her childhood seems to have remained unaffected. “I was surrounded by great affection and love from my family, a poor, working family but one where, as I remember, we never lacked anything” … She says: “Solidarity and peace must be worked for from a base level, with openness and simplicity, looking with sincerity for the common good”. (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found of María Inmaculada Lacarra Cabrerizo, Venezuela

She works for the Mother Emilia School of Maiquetía, and for the San Judas Tadeu School of Faith and Joy, (both not named in the internet).

(1000peacewomen 2/2) … When she was 15 years old she entered the Congregation of the Hermanitas de los Pobres de Maiquetía in Spain. Her idea was to consecrate her life to God and to serve the people through education.

She arrived in Venezuela in 1972 and lived in Cerro La Cruz, in the House of San Judas Tadeo of Caracas. “It made a great impact on me. The first impression was of shock because of the inequalities and the differences that I saw that did not seem logical. I saw that women were very submissive. I was mostly worried about how to help the young girls, so that the circle of behaviour could be broken and what had been experienced by the mother and the daughter would not be experienced by the granddaughter “.

In 1993, when she was Director of the Education Unit of San Judas Tadeo, and facing the high levels of violence that affected the community, she initiated and promoted the project, Education for Peace. “I was very worried about the situation of the children and the families: How could we help people? But mainly I was concerned about finding a way to be welcomed into the families through the children “.

This initiative envisages an open school where the whole educational community participates. “We tried to incorporate the parents and representatives, to organize activities where the school went into the neighbourhood. In order to do that, we organized groups of young missionaries to visit all the houses”.

This initiative was planned to involve workshops, action in the streets and celebration of festivals in the most conflictive zones. It would include a constant effort to promote unity between the families and the teaching team.

Violence is a reality that cannot be ignored. With her vision of an integrated society, that reality may change. The builders of peace may prevail.

“Several things were planned, many things, and all of them were important; for example, that representatives of the community participated, that the teachers were so fully integrated that soon they would be the ones in charge, and would be able to incorporate the new people who arrived “.

With an ability to handle conflicts that seems to be natural, María Inmaculada believes that the building of peace must be based on the strength and local resources of the school and the community. “The project is a milestone that shows where we are going, a sample of what we are able to reach together when we are in agreement.

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Albertina García Argueta – Honduras, Native Lencas

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Linked with A re-compilation of texts and blogs for indigenous peoples, with Articles for Indigenous Peoples on our blogs, with UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and with The Latin American Revolt, An Introduction.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

This girl from Honduras made great efforts to study. She was the daughter of poor peasants, born in 1962 in a small village that only had a primary school. Despite this, she managed to achieve her degree and took some university level courses. Her achievements were exceptional, but her economic limitations stopped her studies. Albertina García Argueta returned to her home and found that she had been dispossessed. So she created a training center, started a support network for battered women, managed assistance to micro enterprises and promoted the Lenca culture … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

She says: Peace is like the glory of God.

Lencas: Lenca is the name given to a Mesoamerican ethnic group linked to the Maya culture. They have ruled several areas of what is now Honduras and El Salvador. During the Spanish invasion, the Lencas of the eastern region of El Salvador organized a war of resistance that lasted about ten years, ending with the death of Lempira. The Lencas did not abdicate and their lineage can be traced back to ancient times through the oral tradition. The Lenca dinasty of El Salvador is active and has several cultural programs with cultural entities, universities and community councils to preserve and promote their heritage. Their Crown Prince resides in exile. This article will mostly concern itself with the Maya civilization after the conquest by Spain. (on Nation Mater.com /Encyclopedia).

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found of Albertina García Argueta, Honduras

She works for the National Organization of Native Lencas of Honduras.

Lenca language: The Lenca language is an unclassified indigenous language of Mesoamerica, spoken (or formerly spoken) by the indigenous Lenca peoples in a region encompassed by western Honduras and portions of El Salvador, Central America. It has been regarded as an endangered language, and is quite possibly extinct. (on Nation Mater.com /Encyclopedia).

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … Her parents, Lencas indigenous of Honduras, lived in a small, humble village. There was no secondary school, and she longed to study. She convinced her parents, as young as she was, to let her go to school in the nearby city of Marcala, in the department of La Paz. She was a leader of the youth ministry and a first aid volunteer. She graduated with distinction; however, thereafter she had to work to survive.

She went to Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras, and registered in the Pedagogical University. Neither her intelligence, nor her good grades, nor her leadership allowed her to finish her studies. She needed money to finish, and money was something she did not have.

Albertina García Argueta returned to Marcala without having fulfilled her aspirations, but she returned with another view of the world. The strange routes of destiny have brought her to realize that her personal accomplishments should be for the benefit of her people.

Today, at age 43, she feels proud. She has succeeded in organizing an indigenous association that has become the engine of the community, promoting the pride of the indigenous group and affirming its culture. She has succeeded in securing economic benefits for indigenous organizations from inside the country and abroad. She has created a support network for battered women. She has initiated improvements in health and nutrition, and she continues working.

During the twentieth century, the Lenca communities in the mountains were forgotten, left behind. The progress of Honduras was centered on the “banana coast”, which generated wealth for North American companies. A powerful local oligarchy was not formed like it was in neighboring countries. (on 1000peacewomen).

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N’Diaye Korotoumou Traoré – Mali

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

N’Diaye Korotoumou Traoré was born in the town of Toba (area of Bougouni) in 1943. She is the incarnation of a priest woman that concentrates all her energy towards serving her community without any reward. She is a simple woman who understands that Malian women more than ever need support to achieve real equality with men. N’Diaye is married and is the mother of eight children … She says: “I work to improve the lives of the poor by getting families to generate their own economic activities … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no downloadable photo found for N’Diaye Korotoumou Traoré – Mali

She works for the Association Malienne pour la Promotion Sociale des Aveugles AMPSA, no own website, but named on:

WILDAF – West Africa Newslette, July 2005.

WiLDAF/FeDDAF – WEST AFRICA, WOMEN, LAW and DEVELOPMENT in AFRICA, october 2005.

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … N’Diaye Korotoumou Traoré is never discouraged or angry while explaining to women what they must do during pregnancy and for the nutrition of children. Born in the town of Toba in Mali, she has passed on a lot of information on bodily hygiene and family hygiene.

The concerns of this courageous lady include:

  • - social activities: she has taken charge of poor families, abandoned children and orphans;
  • - economic activities: generating work like gardening and farming;
  • - mobilization of the internal and external resources of the country for the construction and the equipment of maternity hospitals, paediatrics, etc;
  • - allocation of the women’s bike pump in areas and districts with the support of the NGO;
  • - supervision of blind people in the manufacture of fishing nets and ropes;
  • - the formation of women’s theatrical groups;
  • - youth: production and theater presentation on the important role played by women in the home and the incorporation of messages to sensitize the population.

Madame N’Diayé has been active in humanitarian and social affairs from 1962 to 1994–32 years. According to those close to her, her methods involve visiting homes and organising meeting and debates to targeted groups. The formation and the supervision she did daily.
She knew how to create awareness among the people and those in authority, she took account of cultural and social issues and handled them with tact and patience to gain people’s confidence.

As an assistant social worker, she worked for the improvement of the conditions of communities while counseling for the easing of the domestic tasks for women. This meant they had time to learn to read which would reinforce their management of the family and education of the children.

Madame N’Diayé has faced many challenges in her work, including real difficulties in mobilizing the population, especially the women; mobilizing sufficient resources; cultural and social problems; reconciling professional activities with married life. With her retirement today, Madame N’Diaye Korotoumou Traoré is recognized as someone who has not served fruitlessly. (1000peacewomen).

Sorry, no other information found in the internet – in any language – for our peacewomen, N’Diaye Korotoumou Traoré, Mali.

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Dorothy Rupert – USA

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Linked with Women’s Action for New Directions WAND, and with Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom WILPF.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

… Dorothy was born on a farm in Eastern Nebraska in 1926. Her father abandoned the family during the Great Depression. One of the most powerful influences in her life was her mother, who raised three children alone in very difficult circumstances. In the late 1930s her mother had to make the decision to place her children in a Children’s Home because there just wasn’t enough food for everyone to eat. Dorothy graduated from high school in 1944 and from Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln in 1948, and became an English teacher. After the war, she married Dick, a GI she met in college, and in 1950 moved to Denver, Colorado.  Dorothy and her family settled in Boulder, Colorado in 1960, and she earned her Master’s Degree at the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1967. Dorothy had drug-free births and breastfed her son and daughter at a time when those things were not generally done. She read nutrition books and attended the free Emily Griffith Opportunity School in Denver, taking pre-natal classes to learn about birthing, baby care, etc. As a young mother she was one of few people she knew to write Congress about public health issues such as drugging chickens. She says that activism is “just IN me” … (full text).

She says: “My dream is for all of the world’s little girls to have access to a progressive education where their learning opens doors to whole new possibilities for them to live their dreams”. (1000peacewomen).

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Dorothy Rupert – USA

She works for Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom WILPF, United State’s section, and for Women’s Action for New Directions WAND.

Dorothy Rupert (born 1926) served 35 years as a public high school teacher and counselor, 14 more years in the Colorado House and Senate, and decades in the peace and women’s rights/human rights movements. She has consistently supported education, relentlessly and courageously tackled difficult legislative issues, and traveled the globe for peace. Dorothy embodies commitment, passion, vitality, caring, sincerity, never-give-up determination, and joy. As she nears 80 (on 2005), these traits shine more brightly than ever. (1000peacewomen).

Barbara Wilder awards the First Annual Power Woman Magic award to the Power Woman of the Year, Senator Dorothy Rupert.

WAND is thrilled to announce that two of our National Board members are among the 1000 women nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Alice Lynch and Dorothy Rupert have spent their lives working for peace and justice, and continue to contribute every day to improving the state of the world … (full text).

Find her on Google Group-search.

… In Colorado, Sen. Dorothy Rupert wants police to ticket and fine any adult seen smoking in a car with children in it … (full text).

She says also: … “I saw a single parent doing her absolute best and doing her all” … and: “My heart really always returns to kids, there is something about how I feel with them and they respond to me. It’s such a gift when it feels there is no break in the circle” … (full text, January 25, 2004).

The CAPITOL Report … The November 1998 election was the first in which a substantial number of lawmakers were prohibited from running for reelection. The November 2000 election will continue the process of jettisoning legislative knowledge and experience, due to term limits … Senator Dorothy Rupert (D-Boulder) has compiled an outstanding environmental record during her tenure in both the House and Senate. (This is not an exhaustive list of accomplishments, but merely a sample of what some experienced lawmakers have done) … (full text).

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Maria José (Zézé) Motta – Brazil

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familiarly known as Zézé Motta

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Maria José (Zézé) Motta de Oliveira, conhecida como Zezé Motta (Campos dos Goitacases, 27 de junho de 1944) é uma atriz e cantora brasileira … (full text).

Zezé Motta (1944) had always been involved with art: since her childhood, in a private school, until becoming a professional in a theatre course, in which she was discovered for the production of a musical. Her mother is a dressmaker and her father a musician. Actress, singer and director of a non-governmental organization that supports young Afro-Brazilian in the tough task of becoming actors, Zezé has helped to value the Afro-Brazilian woman through memorable characters. In her teenage years, when she used to help her mother with her sewing, Zezé Motta spent the days listening to the radio. It was her father who noticed that on the third time that she heard a song she was able to sing it perfectly. “He discovered my vocation to be a singer”, she says. Zezé started her acting career in a musical. She was chosen after a closing ceremony of a theatre course, which she paid for with the salary she earned working as an employee of a Pharmaceutical laboratory. She says: “Peace is human rights being taken seriously. It is being able to decrease inequalities in all senses. Inequality creates a revolted atmosphere” … (full text 1/2 on 1000peacewomen).

Zézé Motta on Answers.com.

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Maria José Mota – Brazil

Hear her song on this video: Zezé Motta canta “Fim de Caso” (Dolores Duran), 3.15 min, February 14, 2008.

She works for the Centro Brasileiro de Informação e Documentação do Artista Negro (Center of Information and Documentation of the Afro-Brazilian Artist) – named in Enciclopédia brasileira da diáspora africana, By Nei Lopes.

Find in portugese:

Zézé Motta Lyrics.

Find her and her publications (mostly as Zezé Motta) on Fandango /Filmography; on hollywood.com; on adoro cinéma; on e-bay /movies DVD; on IMDb /Filmography; on Google Video-search; on Google Images-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Zezé concluded Elementary School in an experimental school founded by progressist sectors of the Catholic Church inside a poor community in Rio. She started to make contact with the theatre. And with the racism, that was also manifested very early. From a neighbor she heard: “Do you have to study theatre to play the role of a maid?” The question, which seemed inappropriate to someone who had great career plans, reappeared in her life when Zezé started to receive invitations to work on TV. The only role available was as maid. Protagonist of the slave Chica da Silva in a movie named after this character, Zezé divides life between before and after this character that projected her allover Brazil and overseas. The question of where Afro-Brazilians belonged in Brazilian society led Zezé to the Afro-Brazilian movement and to the foundation of a NGO: Cidan – Centre of Information and Documentation of the Afro-Brazilian Artist. In the militancy for more space for the Afro-Brazilians in the movies, theatre and television, she noticed that there was a lack of opportunities, which was a consequence of the lack of qualification of young actors. “I noticed that it was necessary to stop complaining about prejudice and start doing something about it”, she says. Zezé Motta played important Afro-Brazilian characters such as the slaves Chica da Silva and Dandara (of the movie “Quilombo”). In her work of qualifying actors, she has provided around 400 young and poor Afro-Brazilians with an artistic and cultural qualification. (full text 2/2 on 1000peacewomen).

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Yosepha Alomang – Papua, Indonesia

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Linked with A Papuan woman fighting for human and environmental rights, and with Working toward sustainable Development.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Yosepha Alomang (born 1950) is a true human rights defender who fights for the right of indigenous peoples to reclaim the titles of their land in Timika from Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc., a multinational mining company. Human rights violations are rampant in Timika and Yosepha has been detained several times for protesting either against the mining company or the military that backs it up. She chairs the Mama Yosepha Center, which provides counseling to women and empowers women’s groups … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

Yosepha Alomang (Mama Yosepha) is from the Indonesian province of Irian Jaya (West Papua), one of the most biologically diverse places on the planet. She was awarded the Goldman Environmental Prize in 2001, for her efforts on organizing her community to resist the mining company Freeport-McMoRan’s mining practices over three decades that have destroyed rainforests, polluted rivers, and displaced communities. (on wikipedia).

More Bios on SourceWatch; on Political Heroes.

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Yosepha Alomang – Papua, Indonesia

She works for Yahamak (named on Mines and Communities).

She says: “Many people speak of freedom. But what is freedom for Papuans? Freedom is when people are educated, when people are free from poverty and sufferings. That is freedom in our language” … and: “They took our land. They didn’t even ask our permission. I was just a young girl. I remember my father gave them the land” … and: “One day, a group of men came to our house. They talked with my parents. I hardly remember their conversation. They were warning my father to follow the company’s request. They said if we wanted to eat well, we had to make sure that they could eat well also” … (1000peacewomen).

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION, Washington, D.C. 20549, FORM 8-K, CURRENT REPORT, Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

The book: Yosepha Alomang: Pergulatan Seorang Perempuan, Papua Melawan Penindasan, by Benny Giay and Yafet Kambai, ISBN: 9789799744029.

Find her and her publications on ; on the Austin Chronicle; on pipl; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Yosepha Alomang, pergulatan seorang perempuan Papua melawan penindasan.

Yosepha Alomang – yang lebih banyak dikenal melalui panggilan kesayangannya Mama Yosepha – adalah seorang perempuan tokoh Amungme, Papua. Ia terkenal kaerna perjuangannya membela hak-hak asasi manusia, khususnya masyarakat di sekitar PT Freeport Indonesia … (full text).

… Mama Yosepha has now focused her passion for promoting human rights on an organization she manages in Timika named YAHAMAK, an Indonesian abbreviation for the “Foundation for Human Rights and Anti-Violence.” YAHAMAK focuses on improving the human rights conditions for Papuan women and their children. In Timika, YAHAMAK’s work complements that of Thom Beanal’s LEMASA (Amungme foundation), which is establishing the LEMASA HAM (human rights) Center. Thom Beanal is the key local Amungme tribal leader. In concurrence with our company’s commitment to human rights, PT Freeport Indonesia has been fully supporting the establishment of both human rights centers … (full text).

… Mama Yosepha really opposed the attitude of glorifying men, while women were held in a lower position. So her emancipation was very evident. She challenged cultural currents that demeaned the dignity and position of women. Maybe this wouldn’t be a problem in another tribe, but here this was not allowed at all. And Yosepha challenged all this openly – she is a very strong woman. (p.xv). (full text).

Ternyata, dia perempuan yang sederhana berusia setengah baya, dengan postur mungil yang sekilas nampak lemah, tapi dengan garis wajah yang tegas. Perempuan mungil tapi perkasa itu adalah Yosepha Alomang, perempuan suku Amungme yang berasal dari lembah Tsinga, yang mendapatkan Yap Thiam Hien Award dan Goldman Environment Award karena perjuangannya untuk hak-hak asasi masyarakat asli Papua yang terampas oleh Freeport dan aktif melakukan advokasi issu-issu lingkungan terkait kegiatan penambangan yang dilakukan Freeport … (full text).

… In 2002, we helped establish and provided support to a Center for Women and Children in Papua, operated by an indigenous Papuan organization, to meet the special human rights needs of women and children. The center now has 28 programs for women and children. (See insert, “Local Human Rights Centers Thrive,” p. 6-7) Also, human rights training, which began with our security and social development departments, continued throughout our operations in 2002 … (full text).

… Among Yosepha’s many protests against the company and the military security guards in its pay, was an attempt to bring some benefits to local people. Assisted by the church, Yosepha and several other women set up a cooperative, called Kulalok, to market their fruit and vegetables. Yosepha felt that Freeport should support the local people by buying from them, but the company imported these goods from outside Papua, flying them into Timika airport. So the women planned a way of drawing Freeport’s attention to their group by destroying the imported fruit and vegetables. With the money earned from the co-op, the women paid for homes built with batako (concrete bricks) and supplied with electricity … (full text).

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … Yosepha Alomang is a simple woman from the Mimika district in Papua, where her Amungme tribes people live. She is physically small, but she has bravely stood up to powerful interest groups in defense of her people’s right to their land. Yosepha lived with her family in Tsinga village, Tembagapura, Mimika, a hillside area, until the mid-1950s, when a local church that provided health and education in the remote areas of Papua encouraged them to move near the south coast.

As a little girl, Yosepha went to elementary school, but she dropped out in the fourth grade after the death of her parents. She recalls her first encounter with Freeport McMoran, the world’s biggest gold mine, located in Timika.

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Komal Srivastava – India

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She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Komal Srivastava (born 1960 in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh) into a middleclass family of modest means but high ideals. She is the third of five sisters. Her father was an officer in the Survey of India, her mother taught Hindi at a government school. Komal studied at the MGD School in Jaipur, and went on to complete her Masters in 1981 in geography from Rajasthan University.

(She) set up the Rajasthan chapter of the Bharat Gyan Vigyan Samiti (India Knowledge and Science Center, BGVS) in 1992. Since then, she has convinced the state government of the need for a people-centered, democratic approach to literacy, and set up Samata, a women’s forum for equality, education, and peace, which was very important for developing women’s leadership within BGVS. Komal’s single-minded commitment to social equality and her persuasive and principled leadership have changed Rajasthan … Komal has inverted the top-down approach to the development of the dispossessed, moving beyond rhetoric and devising innovations that have broken ground in equity and participation.

She grew up a quiet, reflective woman who worked hard at her academics and her responsibilities at home. Her first engagement with social activism came in 1981, while she was still doing her Masters. The Rajasthan University Women’s Organization (RUWA) had organized a meeting for women on their growing insecurity on the campus, and on the exigency for an effective women’s organization. … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

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Sorry, no copy-able photo found for Komal Srivastava – India (but see such a Pic on ioa.ac.uk)

She is member of Bharat Gyan Vigyan Samiti BGVS.

See also the Community based Monitoring of Health services under NRHM, where she is CSO Representation (Komal Srivastava, Member BGVS, Jaipur).

… Interestingly, all the five chosen women are sisters-in-arms, joining the struggles and common issues from the time of Deorala sati in the late eighties in Rajasthan. In fact Ms.Roy, Ginni, Kavita and Komal made a formidable team during the past two decades fighting oppression and injustice, never resorting to violence – both physical and verbal … (full text).

Find her and her publications on Google Book-search, and on LinkedIn.

Press Note: Rajasthan High Court Accepts Sati Writ Petitions – Issues Notices. The 12 petitioner organisations are: All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA), Women’s Rehabilitation Group (WRG), Rajasthan University Women’s Association (RUWA), National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW), Vividha: Womenís Documentation and Resource Center, National Muslim Women’s Welfare Society (NMWS), Women’s Cell, All India State Employees Federation, All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA), Vishakha: Women’s Education and Resource Group (VWERG), Bharat Gyan Vigyan Samiti, Rajasthan (BGVS), Academy of Socio Legal Studies, Jaipur (ASLS), Peopleís Union for Civil Liberties, Rajasthan (PUCL) … (full text, Jaipur, 6th August, 2004).

… As you know the starvation and drought situation in Baran district in Rajasthan is very bad. We have a proposal from Komal Srivastava from BGVS Rajasthan and are in touch with her. BGVS, People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) and Sankalp Sansthan, another NGO had done a study of the situation and sent their demands to the chief minister. While they are demanding effective govt. programmes, BGVS itself is also planning to set up some relief programme. They have currently asked for Rs.1 lakh for immediate relief from AID … (full text, November 08, 2002).

Attack on Freedom of Speech and ex-pression in Rajasthan, (by Ranbir Singh, Surendra Joshi, Prem Krishna Sharma, Dilip Singh, Vidya Sagar Upadhaya, Sabir Khan, Rajendra Saiwal, Om Prakash Mathur, Komal Chand Jain, Dr. Narendra Gupta, Mamta Jaitly, Vakar-Ul-Ahad, Nishat Hussein, Komal Srivastava, Sumitra Chopra, Shri Prakash, Rajaram Bhadu, Sunil Ghildiyal, Ajay Jain, Ashish Maharishi, Teesta Setalvad ,Kapil, Manish, Ishwar, Lokesh, Kavita Srivastava and many others), February, 2004.

(1000peacewomen 2/2): … When a student of the university was killed for dowry by her in-laws, Komal took part in the protest rally. Although she has since been involved with the women’s movement in Rajasthan, her activism became truly serious only after a sati (outlawed self-immolation on a husband’s pyre) occurred in 1987.

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Kate Michelman – USA

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Linked with Naral Pro-Choice America,

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

In 2005, Kate Michelman announced that she was stepping down as president of Naral Pro-Choice America in order to help elect a pro-choice president of the USA. Under her leadership, Naral has become the nation’s premier reproductive rights group. Kate’s more than 20 years of advocacy have led to legalization of abortion and access to birth control information and devices. As she educates women about their bodies, Kate also awakens in them their right to autonomy and their right to live in a peaceful world, inspiring countless young women to join the struggle worldwide for women’s rights … She says: “I decided that one of the most important ways I could contribute to healthier children and families was to empower women to bring children into the world under circumstances of their own choosing” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

Kate Michelman (born 1942) is an American political activist known for her involvement in the pro-choice movement. She served as president of NARAL from 1985 to 2004, and testified against Supreme Court justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito in their respective confirmation hearings. She wrote her memoirs in With Liberty and Justice for All: A Life Spent Protecting the Right to Choose (2006). (wikipedia).

Her Bio also on the Harry Walker Agency; and on Source Watch.

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Kate Michelman – USA

She works for Naral Pro-Choice America.

Listen her video: Kate Michelman and Cate Edwards – Women’s Forum Webcast, 23 min, Nov 11, 2007.

Kate Michelman, The Public Face Of a Woman’s Right to Privacy, January 12, 2006.

Find her and her publications on think/exist.com with her quotes; on amazon; on Harry Walker Agency Inc.; on Google Video-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Scholar-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

She says also: … “They threaten women’s rights to reproductive freedom and choice. And they threaten the practice of medicine because they criminalize the doctor’s work” … and: “Bush uses often the slogan of compassionate conservative to describe himself. But it hardly describes the record he has compiled as governor when it comes to ensuring women’s reproductive health and rights. Last year alone, Governor Bush signed seven measures restricting rights, adding to the 11 provisions enacted in previous years” … (full text).

Fmr. NARAL Head Kate Michelman on Alito and Her Own Pre-Roe v Wade Experience Getting an Abortion and Consent From the Husband Who Abandoned Her, January 09, 2006.

Long ‘Roe’ to Hoe, By Frances Kissling & Kate Michelman, January 17, 2008.

And she says: … “The question I have been asking myself is how do we best bring America together in shared purpose, prosperity and, especially, equality. Barack Obama is also calling our nation to the greatness that we all want but that we’re uncertain we can still achieve. Many who had given up on politics are re-engaging. Many who had grown tolerant of the intolerable are now ready to demand more ­ and not just from themselves but others” … (full text, 3 Nov 2008).

She writes: … Senator Obama is not just prepared to lead ­ as our beloved Teddy and Caroline Kennedy have said, he is prepared to lead in a way different than we have seen for decades. Not out in front with us behind him, but rather with us beside him. And that difference is all the difference. That difference separates just any president from a great president; and right now, we need a great president. Barack Obama will be that great president. He will bring us all together. And together, we will change our country. During these past many years, we have lost the sense of what we could do together, who we could be, what was possible. That’s changing. And Barack Obama is the one changing that. With him, greatness is again within reach. (full text).

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Aruna Roy – India

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Linked with The Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan MKSS, India, with the National Campaign For People’s Right To Information NCPRI, India, and with The idea of India.

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

Through struggles for the right to minimum wages and employment, Aruna Roy (born 1946) united the people of central Rajasthan under the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan (MKSS). In 1994, the MKSS began the Right to Information movement. What started as a local intervention against corruption now stands as a national movement that has won freedom of information laws in ten states and at the center. The way in which Aruna bridged the interests of the middle class and the impoverished is remarkable. She says: “While the right to information in India is logical, it is conspicuous in its absence in the quotidian workings of the establishment. The sufferers are the impoverished” … (1000peacewomen 1/2).

Aruna Roy is an Indian political and social activist. She served as a civil servant in the Indian Administrative Service from 1968-1975. She is best-known for her campaigns to better the lives of the rural poor in Rajasthan … (full text on wikipedia).  And: Career; Personal Life.

This year’s Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership and International Understanding has been bestowed on J Arputham, President, National Slumdwellers’ Federation and Aruna Roy, Sept. 2000 … (full text).

She is also a Better World Heroe.

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Aruna Roy – India

Watch these videos:

She works for Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan MKSS.

RTI: Aruna Roy for another campaign, to implement the act, 11/3/2008.

RTI Act yet to make impact in villages, say policymakers, Nov. 6, 2008.

She says also: … “Many collectives of the poor people struggling for change gave us the ideas and the commitment to bring about meaningful change. In fact, this has been one of the outstanding lessons of my 25 years of work in rural Rajasthan. I owe my ideas to the clarity of others; my courage to being with people who confront injustice with fearlessness and equanimity; my hope to the persistence and resilience of men and women struggling to get themselves heard; my generosity to the poor family that shared its last roti (bread) with me and my sense of well being to the many who have supported me in difficult moments of my life” … (full interview text).

Desert Storm: Saathin Solidarity, September 11, 2004.

Find her and her publications on Google Book-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Another Interview With Aruna Roy: Janadesh 2007, by Santosh H K Narayan.

And she says: … “The pity is that there is no accountability in the present system of governance. All human rights depend on the basic right to know, to demand accountability. In India, the feudal social fabric has exploited the formal democratic system to its advantage because the literate are too busy building careers and empires to bother about social inadequacies. That’s why RTI has a widespread appeal for everyone. Every citizen of the state has a fundamental right to say: “You are spending my money. Render me the accounts.” But most people are unaware of this power and suffer as a result their inaction and ignorance” … (full interview text).

Aruna Roy is a recipient of Magsaysay award – valued as the Asian Nobel prize – for community leadership and international understanding. Aruna Roy was an IAS officer until 1974. She resigned from the IAS to join the Social Work and Research Center in Tilonia, Rajasthan, which had been set up by her husband Sanjit Roy. She worked at the SWRC until 1983, then moved to Devdoondri in 1990 and set up the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathana, a group which is a working example of a transparent organization. She is a strong supporter of the movement for Right to Information, which succeeded in getting the Rajasthan Right to Information Bill passed … (full text).

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