There are artisanal and small-scale manganese mining communities in Cihideung Hamlet, Setiawaras Village, Cibalong District, Tasikmalaya Regency. Cihideung Hamlet is a mining location that is still active out of several hamlets in Setiawaras Village. The distance from the regency capital to the mining location is about 2 up to 2.5 hours.
The artisanal and small-scale manganese mining is the source of livelihood for many local residents. Miners are dominated by men with the educational attainment equivalent to junior high school (SMP). Girls (wives or daughters) usually contribute to household economy by conducting small-scale trading activities. Miners and the families depend on the manganese mining business which provides relatively large income compared to other livelihoods, namely about Rp 4 million (USD 277) per month before the pandemic. During the pandemic, manganese price continues to decline. This is exacerbated by the deterioration of small-scale trading business due to the slowdown of economic activities in the village and its surroundings.
Women who were participating in the Photovoice training that was organized by WiME were aspired to involve women in mining activities. Their desire is to develop a brick manufacturing business that utilizes the manganese residue that may create employment opportunities for the villagers. The utilization of this manganese residue can protect the environment from pollution and provide added value to the artisanal and small-scale manganese mining. Those women also want to be trained in business management and marketing skills so that they can sell those bricks. WiME facilitated a meeting with the Local Parliament (DPRD) of Tasikmalaya Regency, where the trainees and the representatives of village apparatus conducted a dialogue with the members of DPRD.