Received on 17.02.18:
My name is Fatahillah Nur Bintang. Most of my friends call me Bintang. I was born and grew up in a small town Blora, central Java, Indonesia. I am a passionate surfer and have a very strong connection with the ocean.
Beside that I am a person who is passionate about social work and I dream for the world to become a better place. Most of my job experiences have been with different NGO’s (Non-Government Organizations), from community empowerment and development, Orangutan conservation to gender and sexuality issues. I worked for Orangutan conservation between 2011-2012 in Borneo. Between 2012-2014 I worked for an organization that focuses on sexuality and reproductive health rigths in Yogyakarta as an unplanned pregnancy administrative counselor. From 2012-2016 I was part of Needle and Bitch collective, a community space and cooperative group that promotes gender equality, sexuality and women’s rights.
In 2016 I moved to Bali to work. Because of the calling of my heart to do something meaningful to the community I started my project ANAK BUKIT FREE SCHOOL in the beginning of November, 2017. It is a non-official and non-profit project which focuses on Children education, located in Desa Ketapang, Banjar Adat Tengah, Uluwatu, Pecatu, Bali, Indonesia. The goal of the project is to give the opportunity to children in the village to be able to learn English in a way that is as fun as possible and by creating a space where children can feel the freedom to learn, to express, to play through environmental awareness and build a library for the community (we have had some books donations already).
I was thinking, introducing the kids about environment awareness as one of the important things to share as well even though even though I hadn’t come up yet with the idea ‘what and how’. And it was so fortunate that in the end of last November I was introduced by my friend Polona to her friend Ruby who is passionate about plastic waste problem by giving workshop how to make Eco-bricks. They are made by stuffing non-biodegradeble plastic waste into a plastic drinking bottle. In December 3, 2017 we had the first Eco-bricks workshop with the kids. Since then, we have already done four Eco-bricks workshops.
Related to plastic bag issue and its solution, two volunteers, Kristyna and Nathi have a brilliant idea to teach the kids how to make tote bags from use T-shirts. We will do this workshop sometime soon.
I have just tried combining the English lesson with something that is fun to do and the kids could learn at a time, by watching movie. We already organized one movie screening. We are planning with the kids to have movie screening regularly, like maybe once a month.
In the future, my next dream is teaching them how to swim and to surf as another subject to be added in the program. Education and especially learning english can make a huge difference in these kids future, in a country where it is not easy to find a job that allows a healthy and secure living for the individual and the family. Learning to swim also plays an important role in local Indonesians lives as many kids die in the strong currents never having learned how the ocean works and how to protect them.
I only run the class once a week, every Sunday as it is my only day off, from Monday until Saturday I work. I am very grateful that the owner of the place where I live allows me to use one of her small properties to run the class. It is just a small hut which often gets drenched when it rains heavily as now is rainy season (rainy season starts normally from end of November until April). The average of the kids who join to the class is 10 to 15 kids, from the youngest age, 5 years old to the oldest, 12 years old. There are some irregular volunteers who help me out running the class.
I have financed and have been running the project on my own with the help of some amazing human beings (donators and volunteers) who I can’t mention one by one. I used to work in a surf shop but unfortunately and unexpectedly I lost my job last December, 2017. I have been worried since then because of this situation that could force me to give up my project which I never want to. I have looked for another job since then and been trying to find it in the area where my project is located (Bali peninsula area). The problem now is low season so that there are not many job vacancies available. There are actually some job vacancies available in different areas or regions. But if I apply for it, I would possibly need to move and give up the project. For the moment while I am looking for another job, I work as freelance surf instructor/guide which basically is not enough to support my living cost like paying my bills, especially when I don’t get customers every day (Note: Indonesia is a country which doesn’t provide any social security to its citizens).
So while looking for another job, I have been trying my best to make the project keep going despite of all the difficulties. Then some of my friends suggested me to make ‘crowd-funding’ to keep the project happening. So, here is the calling out, please feel free to spread the message and donate some money to support the continuity of the project.
I calculated the costs for the project for you to have a transparent insight on the projects costs that are needed:
General and administrative expenses – [20,000,000 IDR – 1500 USD]
Projector – [3,500,000 IDR – 260 USD]
Laptop – [5,500,000 IDR – 410 USD]
Swimming gear – [2,000,000 IDR – 150 USD]
Soft surfboards, two unit – [6,000,000 IDR – 450 USD]
Printer – [1,000,000 IDR – 75 USD]
Total – [38,000,000 IDR – 2845 USD]
I have a big expectation of making the project more organized, established and sustained in the future; first is reaching out more people especially Indonesians to involve and become the core team as at the moment it is pretty much I organize everything on my own; second is the project could reach out more and give the opportunity as big as possible to especially children from underprivileged families; third is making this project more official as an organization so that it is legitimate; fourth is figuring out how to make the project financially independent and sustainable.
NOTE: As GO FUND ME isn’t available in Indonesia, my good friend Sabine Kirchleitner from Germany helped me to set up this crowdfunding campaign on behalf of my project ‘Anak Bukit Free School’; therefore we are using her bank account to link with the platform. I met Sabine back in 2015 during a surf trip in Pacitan, Java, Indonesia. Since then, we have been good friends. If you have any inquiries regarding the campaign, you can contact her personally to her email: firstname.lastname@example.org