In brief, Ashoka is a global social entrepreneur association. Every year they choose person who create innovative solutions for social problems, called Social Entrepreneurs, to be their Fellows. These social entrepreneurs saw problems as a challenge to find solution. With their "creative" solutions, they bring positive changes in their society. That's why Ashoka called them "CHANGEMAKER". Visit Ashoka's website for more info.
The event itself, started at 1600 WIB for press conference. SSB was invited for the talk show on 1900 WIB. There's a presentation by Ashoka Indonesia Fellows about the change they made for their society.
Bu Mira said, everyone can be a CHANGEMAKER. How? Here's the key:
- Empathy: Put yourself in other people's shoes. Know the problems, feel how they felt about the problems. Understand the core of the problem.
- Strengths: Have a courage to start something new, creative and innovative. Every time you face a failure, don't be discourage. Always try and try again. Be positive.
- Opportunity: See the problem as a chance to improve yourself and society. It's not a problem, just a way to find a solution.
After Bu Mira, there's a representative from Boehringer-Ingelheim, the famous pharmacy company. This company cooperate with Ashoka Indonesia in a journey to find social entrepreneurs with creative and innovative solutions to social problems.
Finally, each Fellows have the time to presented their ideas. I tried to summarize some of it. But here's some information about the Fellows:
1. Mia Sutanto
Mia Sutanto is the chairman of Asosiasi Ibu Menyusui Indonesia. She initiated the campaign about breastfeeding awareness together with all parties, especially mothers, who concerned with the high numbers of babies died because lack of knowledge about breastfeeding and also nutrition foods. Lots of mother in Indonesia passed "the golden time" to breastfeed their babies.
Mia and AIMI members tried to educate mothers across Indonesia to breastfeed their babies. With breast milk, babies will grow healthily. Not only healthy, but emotional bond between mother and baby will grow stronger. Something that not even milk formula can give.
AIMI already have branches in 3 cities, which is West Java, East Java and Central Java. Through internet, they hope to spread the campaign throughout Indonesia. Not only their website, but they also active in Twitter. With this campaign, they hope that the death rates of babies can decrease.
2. Reggi Kayong Munggaran
Reggi is a lawyer who dedicate his time to people of Babakan Asih., Bandung West Java. In Babakan Asih, the biggest problem is high criminal rate. Almost every young people there is ex-convict. But Reggi saw potentials from these ex-convicts.
Just because they were ex-convicts, doesn't mean they can't change. They want to change, and they can change. Reggi, slowly but sure, changed the mindset of youngsters there. Violence is the only language they know to solve the problems. Reggi believes that social control take a great role to prevent crimes. When a person or family having problems, such as domestic violence, society will take a role as negotiator and solve the problem together.
Reggi also introduce the residents knowledge about Human Rights, law, concept of toleration and dialogue to solve the problems. He also encouraged residents to improve their environment. They built playground, absorption wells to prevent flood during rain season, even managed insurance.
You can see news about Reggi's activities here and here.
3. Yoseph Suyatno Hadiatmojo Pr (Romo Yatno)
Romo Yatno is a Catholic clergyman from Yogyakarta. In 1997, he and several religious leaders in Yogyakarta declared Forum Persaudaraan Umat Beriman (FPUB) to prevent riots between religious communities. The mission of this forum is to spread peace in the society, no matter what the religion they believe.
This forum actively involved in any crisis to distribute donations, usually to the area where the donations from government couldn't reach them. Romo Yatno and his friends believes that when it comes to crisis, religion identity must be released. This is humanity crisis, so everybody affected by it. Like when Merapi erupted, Romo Yatno and his team distributed logistics to residents who still lived at their village to guard the entire village from thieves.
Now FPUB already established in some areas in Indonesia, and built international network. To know more about Romo Yatno and FPUB's activities, I suggest you to visit his website. Lots of inspiring stories that Romo Yatno shared. For start, check article here.
4. Ginan Koesmayadi
Ginan Koesmayadi is founder of Rumah Cemara. With his 4 friends, he founded this place as a haven for people with HIV+ and drug users (or ex-users) can live without any discrimination and stigma. Ginan himself was diagnosed with HIV+. Rumah Cemara used peer interventions to overcome HIV/AIDS and drug addictions. Their vision is simple, Indonesia without discrimination towards people with HIV/AIDS and drug addicts.
Ginan and friends use unique methods to educate people about HIV/AIDS and drug addicts. One of the methods is through football. Rumah Cemara invited football team to have a match with them. By the end of the match, while resting, the guest will be notified that team from Rumah Cemara consist of people with HIV+. Then they started to give informations about HIV+. Very simple yet effective method.
You can visit Rumah Cemara's website to know about their activities. To know more about Ginan, you can view this article.
5. Masril Koto
Masril Koto is a farmer from Agam, West Sumatra. He founded Lembaga Keuangan Mikro Agribisnis (LKMA) as a source for farmers to have access to finance their agriculture activities. Capital from banking is not accessible to farmers.
What Masril did to gather the capital for LKMA was sold some kind of stock. One stock paper worth IDR 100,000. The money was enough to establish LKMA. Soon, LKMA become main source of capital for farmers. They offered lots of product for farmers, such as savings for pregnant mothers and savings for child education.
LKMA system was adopted by Department of Agriculture on 2007 and became Program Usaha Agribisnis Pedesaan (PUAP). Now the system spread throughout Indonesia. In West Sumatra alone, more than 300 LKM established. More farmers able to improve their products and also their lives.
To know more about Masril and his program, this article can be a good start along with this article.
6. John Ndolu
John Ndolu is chief from one of the tribe in Rote Island. For years, he tried to simplified the culture called Tu'u Belis. In Rote Island, wedding and funeral not just a rituals, but also a party. Tens of cattle provided to entertain guests. The host will ask for help from relatives or neighbors to provide grand meal.
But in the end, it will be considered a debt, and this debt can be inherited for generations. No wonder, lots of children in Rote couldn't continue their education. For Rote people, better not to continue your education rather not provide party.
When John elected as chief, he discussed with the elders about this excessive behavior. So they agreed to simplify, not eliminate, the culture. For example, when there's a party only provided meat from 1 big animal and 1 small animal. There's a penalty when someone do a grand party.
John himself actively promote the simplify version of Tu'u to other tribes in Rote. He also modified the form of Tu'u. The original is for party or ceremony, now Tu'u also use for education. The money collected from the whole tribe will be use as education fund so Rote's children can continue their study to higher education.
This year, John was elected as Ketua Forum Komunikasi Tokoh Adat Peduli Budaya Rote Ndao. With this position, John will try to socialize the revitalized culture to the whole Rote Island.
I was impressed with what they shared that night. They are CHANGEMAKER! If you see by yourself, how come 1 mother, 2 men with tattoo, and 2 men from village can brought a change to the society. But in reality, they do make a change. Lots of people can improve their lives because of this social entrepreneurs did. Maybe I suck at summarize. But you can use internet to search information about them and the activities they did.
Saw them, made me asked myself,,, AM I A CHANGEMAKER???
Can't wait to see another innovations from another Indonesia's social entrepreneurs!!!