Friday, December 25, 2015

Be yourself, and Do your Best!

Jakarta - 10 December 2015.Thursday night that was special for me. I won an award as Special Mention Graduate Banking Journalist Academy (BJA) 2015. BJA is a short course journalism program held by PermataBank, Aliansi Jurnalis Independen (AJI) Indonesia and Australian Embassy Indonesia. This year was the third year for BJA program which has always focuses on learning depth journalism technique and banking knowledge.  

I feel grateful, happy, and surprise. I never thought my story on unbanked farmers won. I wrote several stories for BJA 2015 with tittles: ‘Kisah Klasik Seretnya Kredit Pertanian, Potret Petani Tanpa Bank, 1001 Problem Petani Lokal, Efektifitas Penerapan Asuransi Tani. All my stories and 16 participant stories were published on BJA 2015 book. It was quite surprised me because I wasn’t expected anything, I am happy by just did my best for my final BJA assignment.

I chose topic story on farmers because of my curiosity. It’s simply I was curious on why farmers often have lack of support from getting banking loan. What kind of problems that actually happen, because there are many farmers who still struggling for living and farming. How government reacts and solves this situation since Indonesia is well known as green country and majority village people working as farmers.  

Well, that’s all was just my basic theory based on online news. I didn’t believe it myself until I did little investigate by visiting horticulture farms in Kerawang Girang Village, Sukabumi, West Java. I spent two days, visited and stayed over in Kerawang village. Plus another day, visited Cibadak, Sukabumi, interviewed BRI branch banking head office for deeper sharing on farmers loan.  I felt touched with farmers’ stories; I learned that working as a farmer isn’t an easy job! They lack of support from government and banking sectors compared to others country such in Thailand, Filipina, or India.

To me, BJA was very competitive and challenging. There were 16 journalists selected from print, online, TV and radio media. They were journalist from Bisnis Indonesia, Infobank, Kontan, Tempo, Republika, Reuters, Jakarta Post, Kompas Tv, Investor Daily, Elshinta Radio,, Liputan 6 and viva news. I started join BJA class on August 20 until October 9 2015. Class started twice in a week, from 9 AM to 12 PM. I never skip any class, I enjoy the learning process and all subjects, and even some of subject was kind of difficult to understand for just in 3 hours class.  

I felt big challenge when I had to attend classes, to understand the banking subjects, and to finish the final paper. When I joined BJA program, I was a reporter for Bloomberg BusinessWeek Indonesia in Jakarta. I wrote several stories in Bahasa Indonesia, specialties writing on corporate business, capital market, banking, insurance, multi finance, pension fund, macro-economics and sharia-economics. My motivation joining BJA were to increase my banking knowledge and to improve my writing skills. As I never get any proper education on economic or banking, meanwhile I write news/story on financial matters.

As for now, I really thanks to all the mentors who spend time and share their super knowledge to teach BJA 2015. This experience has shaped me to be a better writer with deeper understanding on how to be a great journalist and produce good articles for society. Also, I thanks to myself who always dare for trying, working hard and believing.

Since November 2015, I work for new media who focusing on banking and all financing matters,, as a content media strategist and editor. Also, I am a member active of Initiative of Change (IofC) Indonesia since 2010, and co-founder of Indonesian Young Citizen Journalist club. Received scholarships on Community College Initiative Journalism Program funded by U.S. State Department in 2012-2013. First winner at Allianz Micro-Insurance Life Stories Awards 2014, story tittle: ‘Everything is Possible in growing a small business’.

Through this article, I would like to share my reflection life notes for IofC friends: Stop comparing yourself to other people. Some people are great singers, writers, or some are really smart and others are great athletes. But none of them are, or ever could be you. You are one of a kind. So stop comparing yourself to other people. You can't be them any more than they can be you. It’s time for be yourself, dream a change, learn to change & drive to change! 


Tomang Tinggi, Jakarta, 13/12/2015

Ratna Wahyuningsih