Empowering Women in West Papua: Challenges and Success Stories

West papua

Due to cultural barriers, West papua women do not play many roles in regional development.

As a result, problems that affect Papuan women cannot be resolved immediately due to the lack of participation from women.

Furthermore, data shows that Papua and West papua are provinces with a low human development index.

This index means that the province is still not optimal regarding human resource empowerment. Moreover, women’s empowerment also requires attention.

Papuan Women’s Problems

All parties must know the root of the problem to maximize empowerment efforts. Papuan and West papuan women face at least five problems, so they have not maximized their resources.

1. Violence Against Papuan Women.

Cases of violence against Papuan women continue to occur, and guarantees of non-repetition are not met.

This case should be a priority and a major concern to be resolved. In addition, it is also necessary to take preventive measures.

If women continue to experience violence, it will affect the next generation. Moreover, violence is a significant inhibiting factor if it is related to women’s empowerment.

Women victims of violence need special programs for handling critical incidents. In addition, long-term trauma services are also needed to get back on their feet.

Women victims of violence also need assistance to rebuild a life free from violence.

2. Indigenous Discrimination West Papua

This problem also concerns the historical aspect of Papuan independence. Many human rights violations occurred after West Papua integration.

One is discrimination that limits the indigenous population’s right to speak and move.

The uncertainty of ownership of natural resources and customary land hinders the strengthening of Papuan women.

Women will experience obstacles when they contribute to society.

3. Health Problems

The poor health of Papuan women is an inhibiting factor for women’s empowerment.

Of course, women will bear the burden of work and find it difficult to access health services. This difficulty will also affect the recovery process when experiencing violence.

With these problems, Papuan women will increasingly accept adversity and backwardness.

Health problems affect the quality of human life. A low quality of life will not maximize potential empowerment.

4. Right to Access Development

It is more difficult for Papuan women to access development benefits to build a solid foundation for a life free from violence.

Various socio-economic problems also hinder the process of recovery and empowerment of women.

Seeing the problems that occur to these women, it is necessary to involve women in shaping regulations and policies.

The patriarchal culture in Indonesia can be see from the legislative body affecting the climate of homogeneous legal products.

Papuan Women Empowered in the Digital Era

The restrictions placed on women make women’s rights progress increasingly oppressed and unable to do much.

However, the participation of West papua women has begun to emerge and make a real contribution.

Opportunities for Papuan women to empower themselves in the digital information and communication era are wide open.

Social media must be use as a tool to build a strong digital identity for women.

In addition, digital literacy also has a positive impact on themselves and their followers.

Through digital access, Papuan women can be competitive in the economic, educational, social and political fields.

One concrete example of the success of West papua women is The Office of Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection.

The position is entrust to women from the Land of Moi. The role of Papuan women in Sorong City is very actively involved in politics and economy.

However, inviting West papuan women to break habits and culture is not easy.

The challenge of doing business is inviting Papuan mothers to become producers, distributors, and marketers of local products.

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