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Jakarta Post

Bringing peace to Poso, one woman at a time

  • Devin E. Bramhall


Poso, central Sulawesi   /   Tue, July 12 2011   /  08:00 am

At first glance, Sue Useem, a documentary filmmaker from the US and Lian Gogali, founder of the Institute Mosintuwu in Poso, Central Sulawesi, do not seem like an imposing pair.

Both stand less than 160 centimeters tall and are quick to smile. Yet, beneath their amiability is the focus and determination of two women who have dedicated their lives to education and the proliferation of peace and women’s rights.

Useem does so via her video camera. Her first documentary film, Which Way to the War?, examined the decade-long (1998-2008) religious conflict between Christians and Muslims in Poso. Gogali does so through her Institute Mosintuwu (mosintuwu means togetherness), a women’s school where post-conflict victims, former combatants and women of any religion can meet, learn about their rights and strive for positive change in their communities.

The two met in 2007 ...