Suwarni (Yayuk) Rahayu

Ashoka Fellow
Fellow Since 1998
Rifka Annisa


This profile was prepared when Suwarni (Yayuk) Rahayu was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1998.
The New Idea
Yayuk believes that the appropriate way to lessen violence against women in the Indonesian context is by harnessing the teachings of Islam. This approach enables counselors to work with the victims and the offenders, and also the authorities, on this sensitive and difficult issue. Yayuk shows that instead of lowering the status of women, Islam can actually be empowering to them. By spreading this knowledge through the social services that she provides to women in need, Yayuk is working to change the climate and attitudes in Indonesia towards women. She has succeeded in creating a culturally appropriate solution to a major problem in Indonesia. When it started, Yayuk's center was the first and only women's crisis center in the country to be fully operational in a practical way, as opposed to other centers devoted solely to research and discussion.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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