by Monica (Sekolah Sungai Volunteer)
Firstly, let me introduce myself, my name is Monica and I am currently studying at UPN “Veteran” Yogyakarta majoring in Petroleum Engineering batch 2016.
I want to share my experience since I become one of the volunteers in Project Child Indonesia (PCI) Batch #30. It has been 2 months since we did a training and welcoming party before becoming active in PCI’s program. My position in this organization is the volunteer of Sekolah Sungai in Winongo River. Sekolah Sungai is one of the programs which the target is given to the community at three riverbanks in Yogyakarta namely Winongo, Gajahwong, and Code. Every group has seven volunteers including two interns. I am so grateful that I could meet new friends and make new experiences with others while trying to achieve our mission together although we are from different backgrounds.
At Sekolah Sungai, we focus on conducting events based on their needs and potentials, for example Pasar Mandiri, Nutrition Supply, and Urban Farming. At the first and second of Sekolah Sungai in Winongo visits, we tried to introduce ourselves by calling the children around their house. I was really impressed by their enthusiasm and friendliness. We gathered them into a community meeting place, but they still forced me to call their other friends. Then, they took my hand and I felt so happy as I thought some of the children were shy. I thought they would be shy to meet me for the first time, but they were so brave. In our activities which only lasted for 2 hours, we did many things such as introducing our team, playing together, giving them the rules when they joined the class which helped them to respect others, and lastly we explained the material needed. At the end of the meeting, we gave them fruits. After the class finished, they were so happy and I was proud when they were excited to join the next meeting. Then we made plans for the next meeting. We were part of this volunteering and we wanted to give our best contribution to them. I made sure that all groups were planned clearly and in detail according to the plan.
The first program was Pasar Mandiri, a secondhand market by the children of Sekolah Sungai to raise awareness about the importance of thrift shopping to reduce textile waste. It also provided an opportunity for children to learn what transaction was and how it worked. For the next meeting at Sekolah Sungai, we gave the children an opportunity to roleplay which helped them to understand to become a security, seller, buyer, note taker, and cashier. Then we made some decorations too. At Pasar Mandiri we sold second hand clothes for people around there and the income was used to give educational events for the children in riverbanks of Winongo, Gajah Wong, and Code.
I am content that I could see their beaming faces when they joined the class. I have learnt many things that we have to be always grateful for what we have now. I love a quote by John Wesley, “Do all the good you can. By all the means you can. In all the ways you can. In all the places you can. At all the times you can. To all the people you can. As long as ever you can.” as it reminds me to do good to everyone. As they say, keep your circle positive and surround yourself with good people!