When The War Ends, A Woman's Fight Begins

The Peace Agency is a new feature documentary film by Sue Useem and Spotted Frog Productions


About The Film

Lian Gogali and her 500 female students are a force to be reckoned with the conflict torn area of Poso, Indonesia. They are part of a powerful and successful movement for peace and justice in an area that has been racked by inter-religious violence for over a decade.

But five years ago, Lian was just a single mother living in rural Poso with a broken leg and a big dream to educate marginalized women. The Peace Agency follows her remarkable journey from her village to New York City to create The Women’s School, an institution that transforms its all-female class into agents of peace and non-violence grassroots activism that has altered the course of the conflict in Poso, and possibly the future of Indonesia.

6+ Years

Filmed over a six year period on location in Indonesia

Massive Scope

1000+ hours of raw footage

Kickstarter Backed

Supported by 184 backers and fiscally sponsored by Docs in Progress


Behind The Scenes

Six years of filming resulted in thousands of photos. Here are some of our favorites.

Lian Gogali – The Visionary Woman
Interfaith – Learning in a Safe Space
Powerful Ladies – No Longer Conflict Victims
Lian and Ci’Ci – Teaching Around Poso
Graduation Day – From 7 Students to 500
Yoanes Litha Interviewing Strong Women
In Class – Learning Their Rights
At Home – Raising Sophie by Herself

From The Director

When I came to Lian’s house in Poso in 2010 to pay a visit after finishing my first documentary about the Poso conflict, I had no plans on making a new documentary there. Since I had seen her last, she had become a single mother and was trying to recover from her accident, all while fighting Tuberculosis. When she told me she was holding classes for women on her front porch I considered the idea of making a short documentary about it in order to help her promote the idea. I had no idea what journey both of us were about to embark on. The result is The Peace Agency.

For the last four years I have been traveling to Poso back and forth to capture what she worked so hard for, which gave me intimate access to her life and story. At first, I thought it was her personal story that would be the main topic of the film. I was frightened she would die of her injuries and illnesses, and it captured my attention for the first two years. When she was able to get the life and leg saving surgeries she needed, I was elated to see her take her school and movement to new heights I could have never imagined. With two legs, what more could she do? Turns out, a lot!

Along the way, as we both grew along with the expansion of the school and interfaith movement, I began to realize that this was simply too big of a story about the school and the fantastic women involved in it to not make that the center of this film. But it was never clear at the time that this film was going to have a happy ending. Would they get the funding they needed? Could Lian take groups of impoverished and traumatized women from across a huge area of remote Indonesia, and turn them not only into peacemakers, but agents of change for a better Indonesia? Or would Poso collapse back into violence?

When we got notice that she would be flying to New York with the chance of winning the Coexist Prize, I knew the redeeming moment for both of us had come. I could never have imagined how well it all would turn out. Since then, it has been nothing but good news. I struggled to decide where to end this film because so many new events kept on happening. In truth, there is no end to this social movement, and I can only hope to capture a few years of it and show what I can of it with the budget I had.

I am so grateful for Lian giving me the access to her life and story and for all of the people of Poso who have been so kind and welcoming to me over the years. It has truly been a transformational and humbling experience for everyone involved.


The Crew




Sue is an American documentary filmmaker and entrepreneur currently residing in Asia. “The Peace Agency” is her second feature film.




Ernest is an award winning documentary filmmaker and an accredited writer and editor.




Michael Lawrence is a director and photographer with work stemming from a diversity of traveled interests, inspirations, and life experiences.




Yoanes is a talented and brave journalist for many national stations and the Voice of America (VOA) in Poso.




Gede Robi Supriyanto (Robi Navicula) is an Indonesian rock musician, activist, writer, and farmer.




Rob brings over thirty year’s experience in post-production to Asia and Australia starting a new venture with a team of collaborators over the globe called No Robots.


About The School

“The Peace Agency” features the progress of The Women’s School, a grassroots interfaith
women’s education campaign turning “conflict victims” into empowered agents for peace and justice in Poso, Indonesia

The Curriculum includes:
+ Religion and Tolerance + Gender + Women and
Politics + Women and Culture + Social Service Rights +
Public Speaking + Community Economy + Economic
Management + Reproductive Health

Learn more at

See The Film

We are currently in the film festival circuit, but if you’d like to host a screening we’d be thrilled to send you a copy and more information! Use the contact form below and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

Big Muddy Film Festival
February 20th, 2017
Carbondale, IL, USA

Women’s Rights Nights Film Festival
March 3, 2017
Skopje, Macedonia

Respect Belfast Human Rights Film Festival
March 5, 2017
Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK

San Diego Women’s Film Festival
March 24, 2017
San Diego, CA, USA

New Haven International Film Festival
May 4, 2017
New Haven, CT, USA

Ubud Community Screening at Paradiso
June 25, 2017
Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

MICGénero Film Festival
August 8, 2017
Mexico City, Mexico

MICGénero Film Festival
August 17, 2017
Xalapa, Mexico

Action on Film Festival
August 29, 2017
Las Vegas, NV

MICGénero Film Festival
August 31, 2017
Puebla, Mexico

MICGénero Film Festival
August 31, 2017
San Cristobal de las Casas, Mexico

MICGénero Film Festival
September 5, 2017
Chilpancingo, Mexico
Festival Internacional de Cine de Fusagasugá
September 5, 2017
Fusagasugá, Colombia

Community Screening at Humanity House
Hosted by Mensen Met Een Missie
September 6, 2017
The Hague, Netherlands

MICGénero Film Festival
September 10, 2017
Taxco, Mexico

Community Screening at Little Talks Ubud
September 27, 2017
Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

Balinale Film Festival
September 28, 2017
Kuta, Bali, Indonesia

Awareness Film Festival
October 15, 2017
Los Angeles, CA, USA

Black Bear Film Festival
October 22, 2017
Milford, PA, USA

VOX Feminae Film Festival
October 28, 2017
Zagreb, Croatia

Oregon State International Film Festival
November 4, 2017
Corvailles, OR, USA

Social Justice Film Festival
November 19, 2017
Seattle, WA, USA

Just Film Series @ Chatham University
December 6, 2017
Pittsburgh, PA, USA

FilmFest52 @ Old Castle Theater
December 8, 2017
Bennington, VT, USA

Contact Us!

We welcome you to contact us for more information or for hosting a screening near you.