Suraiya Kamaruzzaman

As co-founder of the Flower Aceh in 1989, Suraiya has relentlessly championed the rights Acehnese women throughout the conflict and in the recovery period.

She has worked to empower women by ensuring their safety and advising them on issues of economic and reproductive rights. Through her organization she also collected and recorded data on violence against women and offered support services for victims of sexual violence.

Since the 2004 Tsunami, her organization has been running a Women’s Crisis Centre in partnership with other local women’s groups to empower women socially, politically and economically.

She is a board member of numerous organizations including Women Volunteers for Humanity (RPuK), Group For Aceh Gender Transformation in Aceh (KKTGA), the Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy and the National Supervisory Board of Woman Solidarity Association. In 2000 she was elected as chairperson of the steering committee for the Aceh Women’s Congress and has played an active role in providing a strong gendered analysis on the draft Bill on overcoming Social Conflict. This has been critical in ensuring that the Social Conflict Bill is in line with the principles enshrined in the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security. Her contributions towards defending human rights and empowering women led her to be being recognized with the Yap Thiam Hien Award in 2001