Out of love, I Care and Serve Others

Written by Rut Dwi Ardiyantini (Volunteer Sekolah Sungai Code)

Hey, call me Ruth. I am a final year student, majoring in Social Development and Welfare, FISIPOL UGM batch 2016. Now I am a volunteer in one of NGOs in Yogyakarta, namely Project Child Indonesia. I joined batch #30. I have started this volunteer for about 2 months and will continue until June 2020. At Project Child Indonesia, I joined Sekolah Sungai team. Surprised and happy when I heard the good news, that I was accepted as a volunteer at that time. I thank for being given an extraordinary opportunity and trust for me to be able to learn, grow, and develop together with Project Child Indonesia. Of course I’m very grateful to be a small part of this cool NGO.

Being a volunteer means caring and willing to serve. But the basis of both is love. Love, caring and serving are related. Out of love I care. Out of love, I wanna serve and benefit for others. The law of love in the Bible, especially on Matthew 22:39 states that “Love your neighbor as for yourself.” It means love others as we love ourselves. There are still many of us who are less fortunate like us who have enough, those who are in need and need our help. Loving is my basis for serving, because serving without love becomes a pointless thing. If we have based ourselves with love there must be a sense of caring and willingness to serve sincerely. This also relates to the motto owned by Project Child Indonesia, “every one can do good.” Yes, everyone can do good that can be started from the simple thing that is caring. Care will move the heart to want to serve others by helping each other and making positive changes. Serving others means having great care for others.

Through Sekolah Sungai Program, volunteers and interns did the services to vulnerable communities in the river side in Yogyakarta, namely Code, Winongo, and Gajahwong river. I am involved in the Sekolah Sungai Code team. Together with the team, I do service to the Code river side community. We educate all layers of the society including children, parents, and community leaders about health, environment and disaster prevention. The education is intended to raise community awareness about matters relating to those 3 issues, which is can bring to positive change for the community itself. When educating, I participated in the process of community development. I socialize, participate and contribute directly to the community. I am happy to be able to benefit others through volunteer activities that are useful.

During doing this volunteer activity, I learned many things and got the benefits that I felt. Project Child Indonesia has taught me about commitment, responsibility and good teamwork. I feel happy to meet, make new friends and also new family with people from various places and backgrounds, we share our story each other. From that I get broaden networking opportunities. I also get new experiences in working in an international atmosphere and get insights from many learning that held by Project Child Indonesia, such as through self-development and bonding activities. Beside that, Project Chil Indonesia help me on practice and improve my leadership skills and other skills. All of that can help me in developing my capacity to be even better. I hope in the end, through this volunteering activity, I get a better life learning and understanding that I have never had before.

Message from me as a volunteer is “serving with love will create a sense of caring, gratitude, sincerity, and comfort in serving others.” That will certainly makes volunteering activities become fun and good.

Balancing Your Life with Reciting Al Quran in Project Child Indonesia

by Dyah Prajnandhari (Content Writer Intern)

In order to bring spiritual balance in your life, you may do various activities such as yoga, taking a walk, or reading books. Others may go with religious activities like attending a service or coming to places of worship. To be close to God is believed to be one of the ways to gain peace in their life. by

In Project Child, we facilitate the interns and volunteers to take a break from their busy life and sit for a while to find the balance that we all need. Held on Friday every week, Reciting Quran is one of the mediums for the interns and volunteers to take a chance to learn more about the Holy Book. The activity is not always reciting, but also discovering more about teachings of Quran that have not been taught before.

This club doesn’t focus only on the activity of reciting but also discusses fundamental topics of the Quran, such as the history of it, Tajweed, or known as the set of rules of correct pronunciation and Makhorijul Letters or explanation of the pronunciation of the letter hijaiyah.

Nadhia Dheany Pramesti or Nadhia, one of the interns from the Sekolah Sungai program, surely enjoyed this weekly club. She said she is happy that PCI initiated this club.

“This club helps me to learn more about the Quran. I am content that PCI offers us with this club so that I don’t have to find it outside anymore.”

A volunteer from the Drinking Water Program, Muhammad Chanif Hidayat or Hanif, also expressed that he feels glad about this club. “This is a good program as I usually only see this kind of program in Islamic High Schools.”

Both of them said that they had chances to learn how to recite the Quran in different ways; for example, how people outside Indonesia recite Al-Fatihah differently because they are taught to read it differently. It helps them to understand that Islam teachings are different, although every Muslim has the Quran as the fundamental source of the teachings. They also liked subjects like Makhorijul Letters, because it wasn’t the usual material that they learn in schools. 

Nadia and Hanif wish that this club would benefit them in the future.

“We always learn something in this club.”

Although the club is on hold for a while because of the self-quarantine policy that PCI has to stop the spread of COVID-19, it surely would be back with more various teachings that every member of the club hasn’t discovered yet. 

PCI Alumni Story: Everything is Possible

by Dyah Prajnandhari (Content Writer Intern)

When you dream of something, you may wonder whether you can make it real. Dijwo, a Project Child alumnus now living in Dortmund, Germany, showed that everything is possible. After graduating from Industrial Engineering at Universitas Gadjah Mada, he self-funded himself to pursue a master’s degree at Fachhochschule Dortmund majoring in Project Management in Germany.  

He went to Germany without any scholarship, so he made up his mind to find some money for living. “I did everything I could do, even to sell popcorn at Disney,” he recalled. He did not even feel embarrassed for doing those jobs. “I had to support myself financially, so I did what I could do.”

He currently works as a Project Manager Assistant in a company after climbing his career ladder. To become what he is right now, he has many experiences, even when he was in Indonesia. “I was once a member of the fundraising division in a project at my university.” This is what brings him to his position now. “You need experiences in organizations or volunteering so that you will know how teamwork works.” 

He then shared some tips for everyone about living and studying in Germany. “You need to sort it out what you really want.  Educate yourself with the information about the country, the city, and the things on it before you go there. If you want to look for jobs after finishing your study, you need to search for it since you’re in university.” He also said that the circle of friends are essential. “I make friends with many people, especially people from there.” Having friends of different cultures is also beneficial for him, as he then developed open mindedness and flexibility. Although it’s not always easy for living abroad, but Mas Djiwo encourages us that everyone actually is able to do it.  

Keeping Up The Enthusiasm with “Volunteer of The Week”

by Dyah Prajnandhari (Content Writer Intern)

Volunteer of the Week is one of Project Child’s programs to appreciate the volunteers’ efforts during their time in Project Child. Initiated by the Human Capital Department, this program is organized to improve volunteer enthusiasm. Those volunteers are chosen because of their activeness, initiative, and high participation in their respective programs. They are also bringing positive energy into their workplaces, making it fun to interact with them. In February, we have Devania Mandalika from Sekolah Sungai, Annas Izzulhaq from Drinking Water Program, and Asdinar Galuh Wahdini from Sekolah Pantai.

To understand how they were able to get the award, we need to know what activities they do in their respective program. Annas, who is assigned in the operational team in the Drinking Water Program, said that he is mostly working on the preparation of the roadshows that DWP planned.

Annas is one of the volunteers in Drinking Water Program

“I’m usually preparing the equipment that we need for the roadshow.”

Apart from that, Deva from Sekolah Sungai, explains that she usually design the study plan and make the rundown for their visit to the schools. “I like designing plans and writing, so I would take notes when I have meetings. I also made the rundown for our visit to Sekolah Sungai Winongo.”

On the other hand, what Dinar does in Sekolah Pantai is not that different from what Deva and Annas do. She and her team also teach children about environmental, health, and disaster educational campaigns, such as doing experiments on the water to educate them to differentiate clean and dirty water. They also have a sex education class, which surely helps the children to understand better about themselves.

All of them didn’t expect that they would get the award. Dinar and Annas expressed that they are quite shocked by the award. “I even didn’t know there was an event like this.” said Dinar.

She also expressed that meeting with the children and making other volunteers were the things that made her happy, even without the award. Deva is also clueless when she is awarded by Volunteer of the Week. “I didn’t even know I got this award before my friend told me.” She also said that this is an excellent program as it can boost the enthusiasm of fellow volunteers.

For accomplishing the award, one of the considerations is the positive value you bring to the work environment, whether it is for the children or the other volunteers. Dinar shared what she usually does in Sekolah Pantai.

Dinar is one of the volunteers in Sekolah Pantai

“I do everything with a positive mindset like everyone does, although I have been doing it even before I got here.”

She also always shares her brightest smile when she is on duty. “If you put your heart into whatever you do, you will enjoy it.”

Deva also thinks the same.

Deva is one of the volunteers from Sekolah Sungai. She is on the right side wearing black colored hijab.

“I don’t do anything special, but I stay true to myself. “

She continued, “I don’t feel embarrassed when I constantly ask questions about something that I don’t know. I am also a tireless person.”  Lastly, they hope that the other volunteers will always do good deeds, even outside PCI. Dinar gives us the important message, “Give your best effort for everything.” They also wish that all the arranged projects would be successful. “I sincerely wish that our planned projects will run smoothly.”

Every volunteer in PCI is indeed doing a good job. “Volunteer of The Week” is an appreciation for everyone, including those who aren’t awarded. Great job, everyone!

Learning about Scholarship in PCI’s Study Club

by Dyah Prajnandhari (Content Writer Intern)

An American rapper, Jay Z, once said,

“I am hungry for knowledge. The whole thing is to learn every day, to get brighter and brighter.”

To be curious about new things is indeed good as you will learn something new. In Project Child Indonesia, it’s the Human Capital Department’s job to deliver. As one of the departments which function to develop the skill and knowledge of the interns and volunteers, this department presents a study club as a safe place for everyone here to learn something. This month’s study club is held on Tuesday, 19th February 2020.

Bringing up the issue of tips on how to get a scholarship and studying abroad, there were around ten interns and volunteers joined the club. This month’s study club, we have Mahayu Firsty Ramadhani as the guest speaker. Mahayu, as one of LPDP (Lembaga Pengelola Dana Pendidikan) scholarship awardee, shared her experiences when she studied at Wageningen University and Research in the Netherlands. She was also awarded an Erasmus non-degree Bachelor Exchange Program to have an exchange at Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic.

With experiences and knowledge that she has, she shared essential tips on how to get a scholarship, such as checking the deadlines for the application, and always be careful when filling the application form. “It seems simple, but you must be careful and rechecking everything,” as Mahayu stated.

She also shared websites that provide scholarship information. One point that can be taken is we need to be active in searching for the information, as it is us who need it.

“Be active in finding the information. Always read first, avoid asking the information before you read them.” 

After that, few people asked her questions, such as how to get a motivation letter, whether volunteer activities are needed to get the scholarship, or which universities are eligible to choose. Ema, one of the interns from the partnership division, feels the club is beneficial for her. “The information I have received is really helpful for me. I get to know many things that I didn’t know before about scholarships.” The study club which is held once a month is also a proof that PCI always tries to make an impact, including for the volunteers and interns. 

Getting The First-Hand Work Experience at Project Child Indonesia

by Dyah Prajnandhari (Content Writer Intern)

Coming all way from New York, United States, Jasmine Berger, is happy to have cultural and work experiences here at Project Child Indonesia. After getting accepted into Princeton University, she had a chance to do a gap year program funded by her university. She is staying in Yogyakarta for nine months along with her friends in the same program.

Throughout her five months in Project Child since October, she has done many things with Project Child. After meeting around 70 volunteers in her first batch of the program, she conducted interviews with them and compiled their profiles in a book. She is also able to experience Indonesian culture when she went to different schools in the programs.

“To have experience living in a foreign country and structured work cultures definitely enrich my perspective on life,” 

Jasmine, who is planning to take Public Policy as her major, saying that doing an internship here also broadens her global perspectives. “Because I’m interning in an international NGO, the experiences and people I meet would be different.” Although she has experiences in doing an internship in another place such as Planned Parenthood, she always has different feelings for each place. The benefit of getting first-hand work experiences such as here would be great exposure for her. Such well-known NGOs like Project Child also offers her a chance to meet many people and have good networking.

“If I were given a chance to go back, I would like to go back, because Project Child is a strong community which everyone has the sense of belonging here and I feel that,” 

Spending nearly five months here is not a short time. Certainly, she has gained many memories, and as they said, every memory is precious. Even so, Jasmine still has an experience that will remain in her mind. One day, at the end of a class of a program, a farewell party was held for everyone. “Everyone was crying when they knew it was the end of the program and I feel what Project Child did was really making a real impact for everyone,” 

It is one of Project Child’s values to facilitate volunteers in many kinds of ways. Besides giving a chance for them to teach children who are needed, having the real experience of working in organized work culture is also a good thing for young people like Jasmine Berger.

PCI’s Welcoming Party: Where It All Begins

by Dyah Prajnandhari (Content Writer Intern)

Volunteering, although it may sound a bit ludicrous for some, even so people will always get the benefits of it. Getting the priceless experience, practicing soft skills that you have learnt in school, gaining opportunities to meet many people from different backgrounds, making connections, and many other reasons that you can name it. Above all, volunteering can help you improve your personal development if you put your heart into it. 

Project Child Indonesia, as one of the non-profit NGO, offers one event that would help volunteers to achieve those things at the beginning of their volunteering program. A welcoming party, an compulsory event which volunteers and interns should join to get to know each other. Making connections between the inner community is an excellent thing to do before everyone gives back to the outside community. 

Held on the second weekend of February, 8th-9th of February 2020, the welcoming party is arranged by the Human Capital interns, Tash, Jasmine, and Sam. It began with a seminar with Mr. Kukuh, who is the co-founder of about Project Management.

 After an hour, after moving to Omah Noto Plankton, everyone is gathered into their respective departments and have to perform in each department. From dancing to doing a play, everyone goes all out. 

One of the volunteers from the Drinking Water Program (DWP), Annas Izzulhaq, shares his thoughts about the welcoming party. Being in the third year of uni, he feels joining this volunteering program is a good opportunity for him.

“I start looking for an activity that is off-campus, and it is when I found Project Child Indonesia.”

The welcoming party also helps him to find different stories with divergent perspectives that he desires. “It was absolutely fun, I got so many things from the welcoming party, and it was such a good event.”

On Monday morning, everyone did yoga with Katherine as the instructor. Then, the volunteers, interns, and staff did river tracing. With two instructors guiding everyone, the activity actually gives an impact for everyone’s personal development. Annas stated, “I learn to compromise with the challenges in front of me, as the track is not what he expects and is quite hard.” However, he still considers it as a fun time with other volunteers. 

Another volunteer, Melisa Tanady from the Sekolah Sungai (SS) program, said the same thing. Melisa, who has been volunteering since last year (Batch 29), mentions that getting new friends is what she got from the welcoming party, although she is going to meet others throughout the program.

I will meet many people from here, including the volunteers and the interns.

Regarding personal improvement, she said she would accomplish many things such as teamwork, public speaking, and leadership from the program. 

Nevertheless, it was a warm welcome that everyone genuinely feels. It might be just a welcoming party for everyone in Project Child’s team, but it is also beginning before everyone embarks the journey for giving back to the community. 

Hal – hal seru jika kamu bergabung menjadi volunteer di Project Child Indonesia!

by Humaira Hasna (content writer intern)

Gimana sih rasanya jadi volunteer di Project Child Indonesia?

Menjadi bagian dari volunteer atau yang bisa kita sebut relawan  disuatu komunitas atau organisasi ternyata dapat memberikan banyak pengalaman, serta kamu juga dapat mengeksplor berbagai hal. Atau  mungkin saja kamu bisa bertemu dengan jodohmu jika ikut kegiatan ini!. Menjadi relawan itu menyenangkan, kamu akan dapat banyak relasi tentunya. Tidak salah kan jika kamu memiliki banyak teman yang sepemikiran denganmu yakni senang membantu sesama serta memiliki jiwa sosial yang tinggi. Terlebih lagi dengan anak-anak, bagi saya tingkahnya yang ekspresif justru memberikan semangat tersendiri untuk berinteraksi dan bersendau gurau dengan mereka.  Banyak hal hal seru yang bisa kamu ambil jika ikut andil dalam kegiatan relawan ini!

Volunteers don’t get paid, not because they worthless, but because there are priceless – Sherry Anderson

  • Dengan kegiatan volunteer ini wawasan kamu akan bertambah

Mengikuti kegiatan volunteer kamu akan dapat pengetahuan mengeni lingkungan barumu. Kita juga dapat menambah pengetahuan mengenai culture dari teman barumu di berbagai daerah yang berbeda. Kegiatan Project Child ini bisa menambah list  destinasi liburan kamu  untuk mencari spot-spot foto dan tempat makan hits yang sebelumnya belum pernah kamu kunjungi bareng temen-temen, pacar, atau keluarga.

  • Banyak hal bisa kamu dapatkan

Banyak banget pelajaran yang diambil jika kamu mengikuti kegiatan ini. Kamu bisa belajar bertanggung jawab dengan tugas yang diberikan oleh kakak-kakak, belajar mensyukuri hidup, belajar sabar,  belajar menjalin komunikasi yang baik, semua hal bisa didapatkan dari volunteer ini untuk memberikan manfaat bagi oranglain serta bagi dirimu sendiri.

  • Friendship!

Istilah tak kenal maka tak sayang menjadi penting jika mengikuti kegiatan ini. Dengan bertemu dengan teman-teman baru kamu dapat sharing berbagai macam pengalaman-pengalaman mereka dan terlebih lagi teman-teman dari berbagai negara. Berbagi cerita mengenai banyak hal menjadi bonding tersendiri untuk menambah wawasan serta relasi yang luas.  Tentunya kamu dapat banyak relasi dan berguna banget untuk hidupmu kedepannya. Selain relasi kamu juga dapat mencari pasangan hidup loh. Jangan takut jika ingin bersosialisasi karena staff –staff Project Child sangat friendly dan baik. Kamu juga lebih bisa dekat dengan anak-anak kecil, karena secara tidak langsung bagi yang suka dengan anak anak  dapat memberikan moodbooster tersendiri bagi kita ketika lagi badmood atau galau abis diputusin pacar.

  • Keluar dari zona nyaman

Dengan mengikuti kegiatan ini,kamu akan banyak belajar hal-hal baru sehingga  cocok banget untuk kalian yang ingin cepat move on. Keluar dari zona nyaman sangatlah penting untuk mencari hal lain yang ada didalam diri kita. Daripada tidur-tiduran dirumah dan gabut lebih baik  ikut volunteer deh lebih berfaedah bagi hidupmu karena kegiatan ini dijamin asik dan seru.

A Volunteer Perspective: Understanding ‘Everyone Can Do Good’ Motto

A Letter by : Nadia Dewinda Kristanto

Hi! My name is Nadia, I started doing volunteering for about 4 months now. Currently, I am juggling in between two unpaid roles, which both I rejoice investing time, thoughts, and energy in greatly. I am interning as a Community Engagement Coordinator at Project Child Indonesia, and also volunteering as a learning facilitator at an informal alternative school in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Frankly, I am lucky enough to be part of these incredible spaces to grow as I have given wonderful opportunities to develop and serve.

Back in university, I undertook a community service. Although it was mandatory, I genuinely relished the moment and had such an amazing serenity. At which point, I have found community service therapeutic and brings me contentment. I also came across a realization that I like and want to be directly involved. Albeit how blissful it sounds, I ought to keep on reminding myself of my purpose. Questions were popping still, such as “Am I useful enough?”, “Am I doing it within the right place and or with community whichever urgent enough to be assisted?”, “Do all of these matters?”. By chance, I found a fair answer to alleviate that reluctance of mine. 

As luck would have it, I learn so much by being in a process with Project Child Indonesia. I caught up in their motto and how the organization members live up to it. Which fortuitously led me to have faith in contributing to humanitarian aid. ‘Everyone can do good’ is very beautiful yet strongly empowering words of wisdom. According to my interpretation, it taught me to be brave as each of us has the capacity to do good. The “do good” here translates to the context of helping. Along the way on having mutual exchange with Project Child Indonesia, I also began to value help significance as an intangible substance. The utmost humble formation of help is expression to care, thus, there is no measurement when it comes to helping others. Help always matters enough, even the smallest ones, and it should be done genuinely. In Project Child Indonesia, I discover that there are always dreams and hopes if you want to help, and those dreams and hopes are within you.

I wish this piece of writing may give you a little hint on how ‘Everyone can do good’ is the spirit of Project Child Indonesia and how you can inspirit it likewise in helping others.

Youth Volunteer Movements Around The World

By: Felice Valeria (Content Writer Intern)

The phrase “the youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow” by Nelson Mandela is indeed true. As the future agents of change, it is crucial for youths to begin generating positive changes in their own communities. Initiating and partaking in youth volunteer movements is one of the examples of how they could fulfill their duties as leaders of the future. Henceforth, it is no doubt that there have been abundant volunteer movements established by young people all around the world to bring about betterment to their communities through the projects and initiatives that are carried out under the movements. These are a few examples of notable youth volunteer movements that have been acknowledged by the international community as having been contributing to the said causes:

  1. ONE Youth Ambassador; This campaign and advocacy youth organization has fought for the alleviation of poverty and preventable diseases in Africa, which has involved more than nine million people around the world. The teams are widespread across many countries, which include the United States (US), the United Kingdom, France, Canada, and so forth. One of its remarkable achievements includes its success in securing legislation in the US, Canada, and the European Union (EU) to generate transparency in the extractives sector, in which corruption could be eventually eliminated, and thus, there would be more allocation of money for oil and gas revenues in Africa to fight poverty.
  2. Afrika Youth Movement; This movement is known for its advocacy and empowerment efforts to protect and guarantee the rights of African citizens to be fulfilled. This youth-led movement consists of more than five thousands members across 40 countries in Africa and the diaspora.  It is the participation and development of African youth that are highly encouraged, which have been encouraged through numerous real actions and initiatives. The acknowledgement of untapped voices of the Africans was the main motive of the establishment of this particular movement, which has made this movement becoming invaluable and prominent for the development of African youths.
  3. Count Me In; Count Me In has claimed itself as the world’s largest youth-led movement, in which 10 million youths across 100 countries have been positively impacted by the programs carried out by the movement. This movement aims to empower young people through their connections with the world to take initiatives in contributing to their communities, such as through volunteerism, mentorship, and community development. Hundreds of community service projects have been developed by this movement, with over 100 million volunteer hours to date and over $2.3 billion value.

Those are only three out of thousands of volunteer movements that are spread across the world. The voluntarily-taken initiatives show how more youths have been caring to the causes that might determine the future of our world, and how it is not impossible for young people to generate both small and big changes for the betterment of the world despite their young age. Hence, stay motivated and let’s contribute to better our world by initiating or joining volunteer movements! Everything starts from small changes before they are collected and forming larger things, which would gradually show off their prominence per se as time goes by.