Indonesia River Srikandi (SSI) is a women’s organization which concerns for river environmental issues. It has many activities regarding river issues such as education, campaign, training, and mentoring.
This organization seeks to respond to the Sustainable Development Goals and Education for Sustainable Development which was initiated by UNESCO and the International Women in River Network. SSI aspires to prepare Indonesian women and children in facing the upcoming Industry 4.0 era.
SSI was founded by Prof. Dr. Suratman Worosuprojo, M.Sc., Head of Environmental Clinic and Disaster Mitigation (KLMB) of Geography Faculty UGM in 2015 after the Indonesian River Conference was held. At first, SSI was only installed in Yogyakarta with its secretariat in KLMB UGM. Today, however, this organization has been spread across Indonesia and continues to grow.
On Tuesday (10/2), the organization arrived in Papua Province after SSI officially declared itself and was inaugurated by the Indonesian Minister of Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection. The inauguration was also carried out in several districts and cities in Papua.
The establishment of SSI Papua Branch is aimed to increase the capacity of SSI’s role as part of climate change adaptation and mitigation, as well as gender mainstreaming in river environment. Additionally, it aims as an initial facilitation to strengthen the SSI network in Papua Province with society, communities, government, and academics.
Yohana Yembise, Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection Minister who attended the inauguration, stated that water also affects family health. Data from the Ministry showed 66 percent of children in Indonesia who suffered from diarrhea came from families who defecate in rivers. This exceeds the number of households with private toilet facilities.
This problem affects the maximum growth potential of children. Yohana hoped the environmental activist of Indonesia River Srikandi in Papua would be the pioneer in educating local communities to care for the environment.
“The lack of adequate clean water and sanitation services could potentially make women and children vulnerable to violence. For instance, those who defecate, bathe, or wash in rivers. Hence, SSI’s participation supports the maintenance of rivers to stay beautiful and clean, as well as strengthens women’s role in economic productive activities,” explained the Minister.
The inauguration of Child-Friendly Village and Wardo River as Wardo Eco River Park was also carried out by SSI along with UGM, Universitas Cendrawasih, Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection Ministry, and Biak Numfor Regional Government. This was marked by submitting the Grand Plan and map of the area. The Grand Plan contains plans for riverside areas where water parks, women and child-friendly areas, and SSI Papua School will be built.
Based on SSI’s declaration and the development plan, Biak Regional Government showed its commitment during the event. All working unit leaders affirmed their support for SSI Biak-Numfor Regency. In fact, the Biak-Numfor Marine and Fisheries Department specifically presented one unit of Fiber Ship to SSI.