Wednesday, 12 March 2014 21:00


Rifka Annisa, or Women's Friend, is a non-government organization committed to the elimination of violence against women. Established on 26 August 1993, this organization was founded by several women activists: Suwarni Angesti Rahayu, Sri Kusyuniati, Latifah Iskandar, Desti Murdijana, Sitoresmi Prabuningrat and Musrini Daruslan.

Rifka Annisa was established in response to  deepening concerns  about the tendency of  patriarchal culture to empower men's position  on the one hand while weakening women’s position on the other.  Resulting from this neglect of women’s position,, women  have become vulnerable to physical, psychological, economical, social, and sexual violence such as harassment and rape. Gender-based violence in society has encouraged us here at Rifka Annisa to take action in order to eliminate violence against women.

Rifka Annisa believes that violence against women can occur due to many interrelated factors. Rifka Annisa uses ecological framework to comprehend the causes of violence against women. In a simple way, this ecological framework can be described in five concentric interconnected circles.

The innermost circle in the ecological framework represents the biological and personal history  that each individual transfers to their behavior within relationships. The second circle  depicts the  context where violence is most likely to happen, i.e family, acquaintances or close relatives. The third presents social institutions and structure, both formal and informal, where social relations and power dynamics   are instilled in the forms of neighbourhood, work environments, social networks and partnership groups. The fourth circle constitutes economic and social environments including cultural and state legal systems. The outer circle is indicative of global economic and social environments, global social institutions and structures, global and bilateral networks and/or global partnership groups.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014 15:17

Vision And Mission



To create a gender-just society—one that does not tolerate violence against women—guided by the principles of social justice, awareness, care, independence, integrity, and local wisdom.


To organize women (in particular) and the community (in general) to eliminate violence against women; to work toward a gender-just society through the empowerment of victims of abuse, including women, children, the elderly, and the disabled; to increase community awareness and participation by use of critical education; and to strengthen social networking dedicated to the realization of such goals.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014 14:58

Surveying Masculinity: The Change Project

Rifka Annisa worked in cooperation with UN Women and Partner for Prevention (P4P) Bangkok in order to conduct research in three cities – Jakarta, Purworejo, and Jayapura – in 2012. This study was conducted to explore the life experiences of men pertaining to violence, their lives, and their health.  Similar studies on the perspective of men remain rare despite their importance. The study recruited 800 male respondents from each region between the ages of 19 and 48. The questionnaire was derived from the IMAGES (International Men and Gender Equality Survey), the WHO multi-country study on women's health and domestic violence against women, the Norwegian study on gender equality and quality of life, and the South African Study of Men, masculinities, violence, and HIV. The questionnaire was designed to collect a wealth of information about childhood experiences, attitudes about relationships between men and women, intimate relationships, fatherhood, health and welfare, and policy. The results of this study were released on November 2013. Excerpts of the research results were disseminated after the event.

Rifka Annisa is working with three partners under the UN Trust Fund and other programs (KKTGA – the Working Group for Gender Transformation – in Aceh, LBH – Legal Aid – in Jakarta, and LBHP2I – Legal Aid and Resources for Women in Indonesia in Makassar) to conduct research and gather preliminary data. The workshop took place during 20-31 May 2013, discussing Integration Act No. 23 (2004) about domestic violence and Act No. 23 (2002) about the protection of children in Islamic marriage institutions (judiciary religion, Office of Religious Affairs, Marriage Counseling and Divorce Settlement Bodies). This study uses several methods of analysis in examining the results of court decisions. These methods include interviewing clients within the religious court system regarding the services provided to women victims, institutional providers, and courses for women victims and prospective brides and grooms (suscatin). Additionally, a questionnaire was distributed in various communities in four cities (Aceh, Jakarta, Gunung Kidul, and Makassar).

Results of this study suggested that around 50% of assisted teens in Makassar and 67% of those in Jakarta claim to have greater knowledge about domestic violence having read articles and leaflets than those who have attended training seminars. Knowledge regarding laws against interpersonal violence was also examined. Approximately 54% of participants in Aceh, 77% in Jakarta, 65% in Makassar, and 92% in Gunung Kidul reported that they believed withholdingnafkah, an allowance for household expenditure, from one’s partner—usually the wife—equates to domestic abuse. Suscatin, an educational program designed to prepare people with plans for marriage, is conducted through a series of lectures and informal discussions. One of the highlights of the research was the discovery that this educational practice is carried out both before and after the marriage ceremony. Courses and consultations after the wedding are done informally, at the initiative of the client and the officials from the Office of Religious Affairs. Pre-marriage counseling can be arranged via SMS or direct phone call to the Office of Religious Affairs. Instances of divorce registered by a wife against her husband (74%) were much higher than divorce registered by a husband against his wife (26%). Most of those cases registered by a wife were decided verstek (74%), meaning without the presence of her husband.

Rifka Annisa in collaboration with GTZ conducted a study on Yogyakarta print media released during the months from July to October in 2011. This study examined many publications, including those of Kedaulatan Rakyat and Radar Jogja on women and children’s rights. During those that three month period, there were 223 articles published in Kedaulatan Rakyat and 174 published in Radar Jogja relating to the aforementioned issues.

These articles dominated mainstream news outlets, tallying numbers of 317 articles, 56 feature reports, 23 external opinion articles, and 1 major news headline. In general, the two publications supported gender equality. Of 220 reports, 128 articles were in support of gender equality, 73 took a neutral stance, 15 supported inequality, and 4 were deemed unclear in position. 

There is a clear correlation between the type of news being shared and the media bias with regards to gender equality issues. These articles dominated the mainstream news considering the 174 reports, 31 news features, and 15 external opinion articles.

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