Young people of Indonesia jointly explored the wild nature and attended workshops to raise awareness on important issues to understand the meaning of coexistence.
Continuing on the mission to empower disabled young people to foster self-confidence, independence and resilience through adventure and sports education programmes, Helping Hands Foundation held Ekspedisi Bhinneka Bagi Bangsa (diversity expedition for the nation) to unite children from Aceh to Papua from various tribes, religions and different physical conditions to a curriculum of outdoor education. The activity was motivated by realising that Indonesia is a big home of diversity of culture, tribe, language, beliefs and more, that are inseparable from challenge in understanding each other.
Helping Hands Foundation’s Executive Director Wendy Kusumowidagdo said that the expedition was a student exchange scholarship program for 29 students at the same level of senior high school, including disability students, to experience an eight-day programme (from 25 October to 1 December) and challenge themselves into outdoor activities as an effort to integrate all participants with fun and attractive ways.
“The main objective of the program is full inclusiveness and in order for the young generation of Indonesia to get experiences, knowledge and learning through wild nature expedition to develop their character and the attitude of cooperative and tolerant in the middle of the challenges in facing diversity and difference,” Wendy explains.
Outward Bound Indonesia (OBI) Eco Campus in Jatiluhur, West Java became a venue to start the program where all selected participants joined series of workshops that brought issues about world peace, environment, disabilities and integrity.
In the following days, from OBI they departed to Parang mountain in Purwakarta to hike the top of the mountain and held flag raising ceremony to commemorate the National Youth Day on 28 October on 983 meters above sea level. “To climb the mountain, all participants must defeat themselves and work hand in hand with others to reach the top,” Wendy revealed the challenges that participants had to go through during the expedition.
In the next challenge, participants went down the lake for canoeing where they take activity partners and learn about how to communicate, to coordinate, to collaborate and manage their emotion under challenges.
The series of programmes ended by bringing participants to Hotel Grand Hyatt, Jakarta for masterclass and discussion session series with prominent speakers, such as Angkie Yudistia (Founder and CEO ThisAble), Hannah Al Rashid (actress, model and pencak silat athlete), Ananda Sukarlan (international pianist and composer) and Hari Prast (comic artist).
The expedition is expected to instil within every participant that humans with different backgrounds and physical conditions can live side by side through tolerance and cooperation.