"Today a reader, tomorrow a leader." – Margaret Fuller
In celebration of International Read to Me Day (IRTM) on March 19th, our community library in Cipanas, West Java, invited several elderly and primary school students to take part in reading a few selected books. We know how important reading is for children’s intellectual and social development, and it is never too early to get the young ones excited about reading. This was also the perfect opportunity for some intergenerational exchange!
The IRTM Day is not only aimed to instill an invaluable love of reading, but also addressing the disparity between resources and where they are distributed. With your generous donations, we are thankful that YUM’s community library has been able to provide a wide range of books for the members, as well as initiate a distribution of books through our ‘Box of Books’ project - distributing books to nearby schools, and exchanging them every now and then.
Mrs. LL, who was reading the story to the children, is one of the beneficiaries from YUM’s Elderly Health and Welfare program. She is a retired primary school teacher. When we asked her to read the story for the children, she said yes right away and was excited to come to YUM. The other readers are students of the YUM Tutoring program, they are WD and RR. Both are 5th grade students. The audience consisted of 34 preschoolers and 32 library members. The reading session took time in the morning and in the afternoon.
Everyone very much enjoyed these sessions and came home with smiles on their faces.
Firstly, we would like to thank you for being an amazing supporter for our project in 2022! With the spirit of the new year, we would like to wish you much joy and blessings to you and your loved ones.
Some of you might have heard the news that last November, an earthquake hit our working area of Cipanas, West Java. Many people suffered huge losses and many have lost their homes. Some of our projects had to momentarily stop, and we focused on providing as much support as possible to those families affected by the earthquake, many of whom were our own staff and neighbors. Thanks to donations from all over the world, we have already been able to provide relief to over 1,800 families and will continue to do so in the next months to come.
However, before the earthquake hit, we were able to run a Teacher Training for nearly 90 teachers from primary and secondary schools nearby. The training ran for 2 consecutive days at the YUM Community Centre. Professor Sri Hartati R. Suradijono, MA, Ph.D from the Department of Psychology, University of Indonesia, was the speaker for the training, and shared with us the Role of Motivation in Learning. In this transitional period, many teachers have difficulties adapting from learning at home to learning at school, after more than two years of school closures. The training session was carried out interactively, the speaker discussed the current learning-teaching conditions, and the teachers also shared their experiences with one another. This activity is a series of educational programs to help students and teachers to adapt and stay motivated during the pandemic.
Moving forward, this year we have a great number of different activities planned for our students, teachers and partner schools. As always, our aim is to provide support in education where there is a lack, and your continued contributions enable us to do just that!
Thank you and have an amazing year!
NOTE: If you are interested to read more about our earthquake relief efforts, find us on social media: @yayasanusahamulia
YUM welcomes students from schools or universities, both local and international, who would like to engage with our projects. Last year, a student from the Social Welfare Faculty of the University of Indonesia spent 4 months doing her internship and was assigned to identify the needs of the Tutoring and Remedial class. She found out that the parents of the tutoring students needed support to ensure their children keep learning at home, while the schools remained closed.
To solve this issue, she recommended a home learning guidebook for parents. The guidebook is designed by the intern under the supervision of a YUM staff member and her university advisor. The guidebook contains types of student learning styles and how the parents can support their children to study at home. The initial workshop took place last year and we received much positive feedback from the parents. Therefore, we have decided to make this activity a regular part of YUM’s Tutoring program.
With the support we received from yourself and other donors, this year we have been able to run the workshop 4 times. Three of them took place at local schools and one was held at YUM’s hall. All of the workshops were led by either our Program Manager or our project officers. In total there have been almost 100 participants and at the end of the session, they all receive the guidebook. 80% of them are parents and the rest are teachers and the school principals.
Let’s hear what the Mr. DD, parent of NC, 3rd grader, said about this activity:
“I wish to help my daughter study at home, but sometimes I do not know what is the best way to help her. After this workshop session, I feel more familiar with the type of student my daughter is. She is a visual type. It is easier for her to remember something when she has seen it directly. Thanks to YUM and the school for inviting me here.”
And now, let’s hear what Miss AI, teacher of 1st grade, said about this activity:
“This Parenting workshop gives us knowledge that we have not known before. Through this activity, we also can share our experience from school with the parents. Now, we have the same knowledge with our students' parents. It will make it easier for both of us to support our students."
Before the pandemic, the Community Library in Cipanas worked closely with several local primary schools around the area to provide access to quality reading materials. We called this program the Box of Books (BOB) program, due to the fact that the books were placed inside a box when delivered to each school. According to our survey, we found out that not every school in the area has its own library. In order to remedy this, we created a mobile library system by distributing a box of books to various schools and placing them for 1,5 months. Afterward, the box will rotate to another school so that each participating school will enjoy a different set of books.
Due to schools being closed for almost 2 years, the program had been canceled. Fortunately, schools have started reopening, and this March, we received a request from SDN Bakom (Bakom Primary School) for a box of books to be placed at their school so that their students can read books before their lessons start or at break times.
Recently, we received great feedback from the school, coming from their students:
“I love reading these books. It is simple with many beautiful pictures. My favorite things are science books and folktales.” Indah,4th grade
“I always come earlier to school now because I want to have time to read before the school bell rings. I love all the books from the box and I have read almost all of the books. I cannot wait for the next box to come. “ Hanifa, 4th grade.
With your kind donation, we plan to reactivate the Box of Books Program and provide more books for students like Hanifa and Indah. Thank you all!
Dear kind donors,
May the New Year come with new hopes too!
As the year 2021 ended and school holidays started, we were very surprised to find out that parents and children alike requested that the tutoring program remained open. Parents felt that their children were not learning enough from online school, especially in rural areas when all they have as a means of communication with their teachers is the Whatsapp application on their phone. As for the children, besides tutoring, both the YUM community centres include a library, toys library and a playground so children can enjoy themselves during the holidays.
Let’s hear what Mrs. Sri said about her son Rijal, who spent his time at YUM for tutoring and other educational activities:
“Rijal is my first child and he is now in his 1st year of primary education. He is already able to recognize the alphabet but still lags behind in reading. Fortunately, since he regularly attends the Tutoring program, his reading has improved. His social skills are also getting better as he is now able to play in a group. Before, he always needed me to be around or else he would cry. He also can get along with other children and play confidently. Sometimes, when I drop Rijal, I bring my second child too. He is 3 years old and loves to play with the toys in the library corner.”
The pandemic is entering its third year and the situation is still unpredictable. Schools were open for a short period when cases were low, but then closed again as soon as the new variant emerged and the number of cases rose. We are immensely grateful for your continuous support for this project. With your kind donation we are able to create and alter programs to keep the kids in rural areas learning. Thank you!
We take this opportunity to let you know that next month, from April 4-8, GlobalGiving will be matching all your donations up to $50 at 50% for the #LittleByLittle campaign. We hope you’ll join us during this campaign - or better yet, become a fundraiser like our friend Lily!
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