Tuesday, December 2018 | 10:56 WIB

A Peace Maker from Payudan Dundang

“Here she is, the peace maker!”

This is how Hasbiyah (41) is usually called by her colleagues and also her neighbors. It is all because of her profession as a local facilitator for Pay Payundan Dundang village, Guluk Guluk District, Sumenep. Hasbiyah always slips peace messages in discussions of the Wahid Foundation’s assisted women’s groups, in school meetings with her colleagues and students, and in talks with other organizations where she is involved in.

“For me it is very important to keep sharing about the meaning of peace and why we have to make peace to avoid latent danger which means it looks fine on the outside but we feel uneasy,” explained the woman who has joined the Wahid Foundation for more than a year.

The mother of two children admitted that she gained awareness about peace and the importance of women’s peace when she became an assisted member of the Wahid Foundation. Numerous training sessions and information regarding unity and equality have opened her mind.

Thera are local traditions that are considered as justified actions. For example, carok tradition in which it is normal to kill someone in order to solve a problem.

After joining the Wahid Foundation, Hasbiyah gradually comprehended that violence is never a way to solve problems. Instead, violence creates more troubles. Hasbiyah applies this understanding in every activity she participates. Several organizations that she is actively involved in are Annuqayah Islamic Boarding School, a civil society group named Kelompok Swadaya Masyarakat (KSM), and Women’s Framers group where she shares the true meaning of peace.

Hasbiyah’s experience as a messenger of peace for her village has brought her to Japan to share her story with the UN Women and the Wahid Foundation. “I received an opportunity to share my experience regarding issues in Payudan Dundang and also our development after receiving training sessions from the Wahid Foundation,” she said.  

Speaking of peace, this issue cannot be separated from economic strengthening. This is what Hasbiyah and other women’s group members encountered after their village is assisted by the Wahid Foundation. Various training sessions on how to develop businesses, how to make chips, herbal drinks, and rice crackers, marketing strategy, and financial management have been attended by Hasbiyah.

Hasbiyah’s house has become a gathering place for discussions and for food production. She often opens a discussion, and motivates women to keep empowering themselves.

“I am happy to hear that the women have had some savings and golden rings, and do not depend anymore on their husbands’ income. If a woman is economically independent, she is more confident. Her confidence will bring peace and inspirations in her community,” Hasbiyah concluded.

By: Ester Pandiangan