Shyamala Gomez

Shyamala Gomez is the Executive Director of Centre for Equality and Justice (CEJ). She is a lawyer with two decades of experience in gender and women’s rights. She has researched and published extensively on violence against women, masculinities, rights of migrant workers, land rights of women, women and politics, and women, peace and security. She was the Country Director of FOKUS WOMEN and her illustrious career spans across organisations such as United Nations, International Labour Organisation, and Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions. In this interview with Women Talk, Shyamala discusses her work in a gender space, her journey into women’s rights and law, the findings of CEJ’s study on sexual bribery, the disparities between laws and implementation, the significance of joint co-ownership of land for women, and bringing gender as a vital component into the pedagogy of law. Continue reading Shyamala Gomez


Dr Sepali Kottegoda

Dr Sepali Kottegoda is the Executive Director of the Women and Media Collective. She has decades of experience working on women’s rights and gender in Sri Lanka. In this interview with Women Talk, Sepali reflects on the formative years of the women’s movement in Sri Lanka and discusses reconciliation, political representation, unpaid care work, and sexuality education through a women’s rights lens. Continue reading Dr Sepali Kottegoda

Sharanya Sekaram

Sharanya Sekaram is an activist, feminist, writer, researcher, and has extensive experience working in the fields of reconciliation, conflict, gender, youth activism, and community building. In this interview with Women Talk, Sharanya discusses her work in a gender space, the significance of prioritizing relationship education and sexual and reproductive health and rights in Sri Lanka’s post war context, and the challenges of engaging as a feminist and an activist. Continue reading Sharanya Sekaram

Faizun Zackariya

Faizun Zackariya is co-founder of the Muslim Women’s Research and Action Forum (MWRAF) and had been in the forefront of the struggle for Muslim personal law reforms since the 1980s. She is an activist, a researcher, and writer. In this interview with Women Talk, she talks about the formative years of MWRAF, the research, experiential and knowledge based advocacy process of reforms pioneered by MWRAF, issues surrounding current implementation of Muslim personal laws, and why it is significant to continue the struggle for reforms in ways that relate to women’s lived realities. Continue reading Faizun Zackariya

Sarah Soysa

Sarah Soysa has been committed to working on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) since she volunteered at the Family Planning Association as a university student. She continues her challenging work as an SRHR educator, a feminist, and an advocate for women’s rights. In this interview, Sarah talks about working on SRHR in the plantations sector and postwar areas, access to accurate information on safe medical abortion, myths surrounding the discourse on women’s bodies and abortion, and training thousands of youth as peer educators on SRHR. Continue reading Sarah Soysa

Sumika Perera

Sumika Perera has been a social activist, working on peace, democracy, gender, and women’s rights in Sri Lanka for over 25 years. In this interview with Women Talk, Sumika talks about how her journey began with joining the farmers’ rights movements in the 1980s, her involvement with the women’s movement in Sri Lanka, and her own experiences of having to face political violence during the late 1980s. She also reflects on how she set up the Women’s Resource Centre, a prominent women’s rights organisation that works with grassroots communities in the Kurunegala district of Sri Lanka. Continue reading Sumika Perera

Paba Deshapriya

Paba Deshapriya discusses the challenging work she does in the field of sexual and reproductive health and rights education in Sri Lanka. In this interview with Women Talk, Paba discusses how theatre can be used to inform young people and the increasing need for education to eliminate online hate and revenge targeting young people’s sexuality, bodies, and privacy. Continue reading Paba Deshapriya