Miri – 6 October 2015 – 100 primary and secondary school students of four schools in Sukabumi, Indonesia were introduced to the English language through the SukaEnglish Project, an initiative by Humanitarian Affairs Curtin Sarawak Student Chapter of Curtin University, Sarawak Malaysia (Curtin Sarawak) recently.
This first international teaching project by the student chapter took place in the coastal town of Desa Karang Papak in Kecamatan Cisolok – Pelabuhan Ratu in Sukabumi. The town is located some 170 kilometres from Jakarta with the Sundanese ethnic group making up the majority of the population.
The project involved 33 volunteers comprising students and staff of Curtin Sarawak and University of Indonesia teaching the students English and essential skills such as communication skills with the aim of bringing about significant change in the community, particularly their livelihoods and economic status.
It was also aimed at instilling the spirit of volunteerism among the university students, encouraging them to be more involved with community projects.
The teaching modules covered basic communication and themes such as clothing, the human body, food, jobs, beach life, the animal kingdom and family. Other activities held included an ‘Amazing Race’, charades and interactive sessions involving singing and team chants.
The project ended with a cultural event where the volunteers donned ethnic costumes and performed Kadazan, Bangladeshi and Indian traditional dances.
The SukaEnglish Project was sponsored by Curtin Sarawak’s Student Council, Marketing Department and the Leadership and Entrepreneurship Centre (LEC), the university’s student and community development arm under its University Life Department.
It was supported by the university’s The Learning Centre which helped design teaching modules to fit the requirements of each target group.
Event organiser Winarto Widjaja said it was great seeing the Curtin students motivating the children of Pelabuhan Ratu to communicate confidently in English.
Meanwhile, Humanitarian Affairs Curtin Sarawak Student Chapter Vice-President and Head of Volunteers Aaron Lim Chee Ren remarked that the project was a unique opportunity to engage with a rural community in Indonesia and experience the joys of teaching, as well as contribute to the future development of the community.
The student chapter is part of Humanitarian Affairs United Kingdom, a London-based social enterprise. The organisation empowers young people to bring about positive social change by initiating and supporting humanitarian relief efforts and development programmes around the world.
Through such activities, Humanitarian Affairs Curtin Sarawak Student Chapter provides its members opportunities to engage in humanitarian service, strengthen their awareness of diverse cultures, and develop a lifelong commitment to helping others by participating in relief efforts.
For more information on Humanitarian Affairs Curtin Sarawak Student Chapter, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit its Facebook page.
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