Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Creating New Stories

2016 was a year of transformation for me. It started when I decided to go home, resigning from work, and starting everything from zero when I got to Bangka. It is an extraordinary and meaningful journey of life.

For me, it takes a long time to make a choice, whether to return home or stay in the capital city where I have lived since 2007. However, I could not resist the "seduction" of my parents to return and serve in my beloved hometown, Bangka Island. Education on the island of Bangka is still far behind the big cities like Jakarta, Bandung, Yogyakarta, and others. This also encouraged me to return and serve my homeland.

Immediately after the 22nd Asia Pacific Youth Conference (APYC) in Bandung, Indonesia, I returned to the island where I grew up. Various questions colored my first days when I returned. Many asked, "Why did you go back to the village?" "What do you want to do in Bangka?” I just answered, "I will do a lot in Bangka". Indeed, the answer seemed ambiguous, but I tried to convince myself that one day I would do something for this island.

Simply put, since 2016, I have founded a youth community, travelling to cities, schools, and remote villages to share with children, teenagers, and citizens.  Together with the community we have collaborated with several large companies' CSR programs, such as PT. Timah and PT. PJB Services. I did it so that I could build a strong network for the sustainability of the projects that I did with the community.

Over the last four years I have expanded my work in Bangka, teach on a campus close to home, opened a language course, I have a beautiful wife, and am physically closer to my parents.  I never imagined these simple things when I first returned.

In the future, I only hope that I can contribute positively in the field of education, and revive the enthusiasm of young people to pursue education to the highest level, and who will then return to serve on this beloved Bangka Island.

Yudi Septiawan