I'm your huckleberry

though i can't change the world, i can always change myself. btw: tolong bantu Panti Asuhan Bustanul Aitam (http://ulim-orphan.blogspot.com/ ). Bank BRI, Unit Meureudu, Cabang Sigli, Aceh, Indonesia// Account Number: 3970.01.002291.53-4// On behalf of: Yayasan Bustanul Aitam// Swift Code: BRINIDJA. Contact: Ilyas Ibrahim S.AG, mobile: +62-(0)81362672600

Monday, January 23, 2006

Khanduri Uroe Sjuhada

Yesterday (Jan 22), I attended a kanduri (feast) for orphanage across Pidie district. The event held by GAM (Free Aceh Movement) to socialize the peace process and to pray for lasting peace.

The event was held in Cubo (Bandar Dua sub-district), one of GAM base. The late Abdullah Syafie (former GAM Military Chieft) was ambushed and shoot to die (22 January 2002) by TNI (Indonesia army) in that area.

So the day become the Hari Syuhada (heroism day) for GAM.

But yesterday, the commemoration was not full with war spirit, but it was full of confidence and spirit for peace.

Thousand orphans and villagers come to the event. The crowd caused traffic jam, so I have to stop the car around 3 Km from Blang Sukon, place where they held the event, and walk.

The cook already prepared since Jan 21. The people said the guests had come since around 09.00. In spite a lot of food flowing in to the place, at 12.00 the kids had to wait almost one hour to get the meal. The committee asked grown up people to wait after the orphanage for meal.

The place really crowd and the hot weather force some kids passing-out.

Considering the thousand crowd, the committee seem handling the event very well. Every one has their meal, though the grown up have it at 14.30. Health section ready all the time to assist kids and villagers who was tired.

After the feast, each kid got a ‘sarung’ (traditional garment). They look very happy during the walking back, though they also very tired.

At 14.00 o’clock I decide to go back. Well, I cannot stand anymore since I feel so hungry, yet I do not want to queue for the food. How can I queue while the kids already desperate for food.

Tired but happy. In my way, I pick up 3 villagers (2 was kid) who walk back from the event. If they walk, it was around 10 Km from the main road where there is public transportation.

Note: in the afternoon my friend told me that actually the committee prepared a special place for us, including after a session about reconstruction and rehabilitation in Pidie. What funny was, they wait for my present to give some speech. What a confusion!

Btw, now I’m heading to Jakarta (24-31 January). When I get back to office, I’ll tell you more.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

economic interpretation of peace

Efforts for peace once again come to Aceh. The agreement is there, the spirit accompanies it, the people full of hope, and the process is happening. Everyone pray it will last forever.

So what is the meaning of peace? Surely it is about safety in all daily activities; from sleep, working, traveling, praying, and back to sleep.

From the entire hip for peace, the earliest interpretation of it is about economic; better income and welfare. Well, we live in the materialistic world where anything that matter seems to be ownership of assets. Climbing the social ladder mostly also about wealth accumulation. Study hard at school narrowly bound just for career, which mean a higher salary.

Then no wonder when peace there, economic interpretation becomes crucial.

List the examples:
  • people work back to paddy farm that had been left for years

  • ignore plantation became like a forest, now is clear up

  • crowd in the coffee shop happening pass the midnight, compare to conflict time which end at 07.00 p.m.
  • across city transportation (say Banda Aceh – Medan) continue for 24 hours, while in the past it was stopped before dark

  • and more….

Small bus terminal in Sigli, where I live now, active 24 hours, proofing the confidence and vote for peace.

I have good title for a post conflict program too: Maintaining Peace through Economic Empowerment/Development. Yeahhh, only title for now. See later if we can any budget for that. This brings my memory back to brief on Aceh in Consultative Group on Indonesia (CGI) during the “Cessation of Hostility Agreement” (COHA) titling: Promoting Peaceful Development in Aceh.

The poster spread through the region also say about it clearly, Peace are:
  • you can trade and go to market everywhere

  • you can farm anytime

  • you can go to the sea anytime

  • you can go to the paddy field without fear

  • you can study and teach anywhere
Let’s make it real and preserve the peace.

Relevant posts:
- bi-weekly round up, Dec '05

Friday, January 20, 2006


happy like a little kid.

well, since last week, thursday morning (Jan 12), the internet was down. the lightning struck the transmitter tower and destroying several equipment. improper grounding cable make it worse.

after waiting new equipment from medan/jakarta. then changes the equipment because they sent the wrong one. plus hard work and all the trial, finally reconnected.

so lets sing together:


Reconnected and it feels so good
Reconnected 'cause we understood
There's one perfect fit
And, sugar, this one is it
We both are so excited 'cause we're reconnected, hey, hey ..


adapted from reunited lyric.


Sunday, January 08, 2006

Field Monitoring

Last week I did another field monitoring in Bireun district. In field monitoring, I directly discuss with stakeholders (government official, implementing partners officer, community leaders, villagers non-beneficiaries and beneficiaries) issues relates to the donation distribution. Here are several points that I try to find out:
  • does the donation reach the target (in term quantity & quality)
  • does the donation useful to the beneficiaries
  • how is the mechanism distributing the donation (transparency, public participatory, beneficiaries selection)
  • are there any special attention to marginalize/most vulnerable people (diffable, single parent, women, elderly, etc)
  • what is the impacts from the donations (both positives & negatives)

  • and general question “are there any problems”, such as corruption, unsuitable donation, etc.

  • are there any recommendation to improve the future program
While we may pretend to know better than the villagers, not surprisingly villagers learn faster and has more idea what is good for them. Well, it is their life, so they suppose to know better than me.

See also my previous post on Field Monitoring, with picture (pict1 and pict2)

Friday, January 06, 2006

donation from Beydoun family

Recently, I met sister Zaynab (of Victory News Magazine) in Banda Aceh, Dec 25. We have been in touch since 2000 by email and phone, mostly relates to discussion about Aceh.

Sister Zaynab has generously donated to Bustanul Aitam orphanage (see also my note on the orphanage, in Indonesian). Now, she bring donation from her friends Nabil Beydoun and Alaine Beydoun, from Cairns, Australia.

I delivery the donation to the orphanage committee in January 1, 2006. Well, it is a nice gift for beginning the year.

Thanks a lot for your donation Nabil and Alaine :-)

To thou who want to donate for the orphan in Ulim, you can transfer the funds to:
Bank BNI – Sigli Branch,
Account Number: 61093541
On behalf of: Ilyas IB/ Yayasan Bustanul Aitam
Swift Code: BNINIDJA

If you pass the area and want to visit the orphanage, the address and contact:
Yayasan Bustanul Aitam,
Jl Meunasah Krueng Keude Ulim
Jl Banda Aceh Medan KM 163, Aceh
Phone: +62-(0)644-545057
Mobile: +62-(0)8566162033

For more information, you can reach me by email or Yahoo Messenger rpidie.

first of Jan '06

I suppose to write this note in Jan 1, ’06, at night. But I was too tired at that time. In the following day until now, I was busy with office work. In fact, this afternoon I just finish two days field monitoring travel (I tell about it later).

Why I make this note? Cause my friends curiously asking how did I celebrate my New Year in Aceh? (After long time – 13 years – I stay in Jakarta, they curious how after three months I’m still in Pidie, Aceh).

For sure, when the time cross 2005 to 2006, I have been surfing for hour searching information about scholarship. I’m looking for short term training, study, or professional program with maximum one year duration. These two programs seem to be very interesting: the International Summer School, University of Oslo, and School of Development Studies, University of East Anglia (actually, I have already submitted one application for short term training program: Financial Institutions for Private Enterprise Development (FIPED), John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University).

Entering 2006, what a surprise, someone called me to wish me Happy New Year. It is a special call I guess, what a nice girl. Thanks ;-) ….

The following day, first of Jan ’06, Sunday, here was my activities list:
  1. opening duck farm training, morning, @ Lampoh Saka, Pidie (120 Km from Banda Aceh, don’t ask me how its happen).

  2. passing house construction area, Peurade village.

  3. take a new picture of latest progress bridge building in Meue village, Trienggadieng sub-district.

  4. visit my cousin

  5. give donation from Nabil Beydoun and Alaine Beydoun (Cairns, Australia) to Bustanul Aitam orphanage.

  6. visit my uncle

  7. home at afternoon, dinner, then long rest.

Sometime I confuse between holiday and working day, all is just mix up.

Come to think about it, I have never celebrated New Year before, why do I care about it now?