Ivy Josiah
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Ivy Josiah

Ivy Nallammah Josiah is a teacher and activist in Malaysia. She has been a pioneer in setting up the Women's Aid Organisation that provides help and refuge to women fleeing from domestic violence in Malaysia.

Early life

Josiah was born in Malaysia and grew up in Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur.[1] Her parents were originally from Jaffna in Sri Lanka but her father came to Malaysia to work for the colonial government. Eventually, Josiah's father returned home to Jaffna, married Josiah's mother and moved back to Malaysia.[1]


For more than 15 years, Josiah was Executive Director of the Women's Aid Organisation (WAO) - a Malaysian organisation which helps battered women and children.[2] Through her contributions, Josiah has been described as helping to "put domestic violence on the national agenda".[3][failed verification] When Josiah started working with WAO, she saw it as a way to eliminate discrimination in her own life saying, "I never saw it as charity work. It's activism."[4] She was introduced to WAO through Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan, a lawyer and human rights advocate who was her friend in Convent Bukit Nanas.[4]

In 2004-5, she served on the Royal Commission to Enhance the Operation and Management of the Royal Malaysia Police and criticised the Emergency Ordinance.[5]

In 2017, Josiah was still active in many types of civil and political rights causes including volunteering with Bersih, the Human Rights Society of Malaysia,[2] and PROHAM (Society for the Promotion of Human Rights), for whom she is the secretary-general.[6]

Personal life

In 2016, Josiah was also planning on embarking on a creative project with Five Arts Centre founder Marion D'Cruz, a dancer and choreographer, and Mac Chan, a lighting designer.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Learning to be "unproper" | The Nut Graph". www.thenutgraph.com. Retrieved 2017.
  2. ^ a b "IVY JOSIAH | New Tactics in Human Rights". www.newtactics.org. Retrieved 2017.
  3. ^ "100 memorable Malaysian women". The Star. 8 March 2011.
  4. ^ a b c "Ivy Josiah still fighting for civil rights". 3Age. 7 March 2016. Archived from the original on 4 November 2016. Retrieved 2017.
  5. ^ "Convicted Before Trial: Indefinite Detention Under Malaysia's Emergency Ordinance", Human Rights Watch, 18 (9), 2006
  6. ^ "Chew: Women candidates want level playing field". The Star. 28 April 2017. Retrieved 2017.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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