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A Future Rooted in Our Forests

On today’s episode of Southeast Asia Dispatches, Deborah Augustin speaks to Shaq Koyok, a contemporary artist from the indigenous Temuan community about his thoughts on the plan to degazette 97% of the Kuala Langat North Forest Reserve in Malaysia, an area that not only has an important role to play in conserving biodiversity, but is also significant to the indigenous communities who rely on it to survive.

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Youth Power in Malaysian Politics

In July 2019, the Malaysian Parliament passed a Constitutional Amendment to lower the voting age from 21 to 18. This amendment means that an estimated 8 million eligible voters will be added to the electoral roll. While many have celebrated the move to lower the voting age, critics have said that Malaysian youth are not ready for the responsibility of voting. On this week’s episode of Southeast Asia Dispatches, Deborah Augustin speaks to Qyira Yusri from Undi18, and Melinda Anne, a student, about their thoughts on youth political participation in Malaysian politics.

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Activist Burnout: Fostering Sustainable Activism

During these uncertain and tumultuous times, activists have gone above and beyond to help the most vulnerable groups in our communities. But what happens when activists start to feel burnt out due to the stress, threats and trauma they face daily?

On this week’s episode of Southeast Asia Dispatches, Membership Engagement Manager, Deborah Augustin speaks to Katrina Jorene Maliamauv from Malaysia and Veronica Iswinahyu in Indonesia about their experiences and the prevalence of burnout in activism spaces. They discuss how it affects an activist’s psycho-social well-being and the role of self-care in creating sustainable activism.

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Unpacking Urban Poverty

In Southeast Asia, poverty is often associated with rural communities. As a result, conversations around urban poverty have largely taken a backseat in public discourse.

On this week’s episode of Southeast Asia Dispatches, Deborah Augustin speaks to Prof. Datuk Dr. Denison Jayasooria, chair of the Asian Solidarity Economy Council and Pete Nicoll from Reach Out Malaysia, an organisation that works with the rural and urban poor. We discuss their experiences in working closely with this community and the misconceptions surrounding this multifaceted subject.

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Citizen of the Earth: A Refugee Speaks Out

During the COVID-19 pandemic, society’s most vulnerable are at risk in several ways. Refugees and migrants in particular, whether documented or undocumented, face challenges such as having inadequate access to healthcare, reduced income and overall increased precarity. It becomes even more complicated when their host countries do not recognise their rights.

On this week’s episode of Southeast Asia Dispatches, membership engagement manager, Deborah Augustin speaks to a journalist, writer and observer about the rise in xenophobia in Malaysia towards migrants and refugees. We’ve kept our guest’s identity anonymous out of concerns for his safety.

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The Age of the Journalist

Today is World Press Freedom Day. In Southeast Asia, journalists face both legal and financial challenges when reporting. But now more than ever, quality journalism is important to keep people informed and many journalists across the globe continue to do that despite the threat of the current pandemic.

On today’s episode, our Membership Engagement Manager Deborah Augustin speaks to Aisyah Llewellyn, our Editor in Chief about what it’s like to be out in the field when most people are being told to stay home.

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Surviving the Pandemic When Home Is Unsafe

Globally, lockdowns are a key tactic to combat COVID-19. Phrases like ‘Stay Home, Stay Safe’ are used on social media to encourage people to stay indoors during this pandemic. But what happens when home isn’t a safe place for some people?

On this week’s episode of Southeast Asia Dispatches, membership engagement manager, Deborah Augustin looks at what happens when survivors of domestic abuse are forced to stay home with their abusers during a lockdown. She is joined by Tan Heang Lee, the Communications Officer of the Women’s Aid Organization in Malaysia and Patricia Sue-Lin Knudsen, who is a co-producer and host of The Pool, a podcast series about and for domestic abuse survivors in Malaysia.