Papuan Youths and Girls Share Inspirational Stories in the Special Peace Dialogue

goodmorningpapua.com – Various inspirational stories about the role and contribution of the younger generation continue to emerge from all corners of the country, including from Eastern Indonesia which can be a reflection for today’s young generation.

This then became the main focus for FPCI Chapter UMY in holding a Special Peace Dialogue (Sepeda) with the theme “Inspirational Stories from Eastern Indonesia” in a Hybrid way by means of Zoom Meetings, YouTube Broadcasts and offline at the Ayaarta Hotel Malioboro, Yogyakarta.

The event, which was moderated by University of Indonesia International Relations Lecturer Aisha Kusumasomantri, presented a number of young Papuan speakers including founder Du Anyam Hanna Keraf, social media influencer Jeni Karay, Papuan youth leader and book writer Steve Mara, and LPDP scholarship winner to study at American University, Paskalis Kaipman.

In her presentation, Hanna Keraf told her story of running a craft-based business. She works together with women throughout Indonesia to produce plaits and handicrafts with the aim of providing economic access to the surrounding community, especially women.

“We see the lack of (local people) access to cash, it’s not that the mother or woman doesn’t have food or doesn’t have a house. But how can we provide direct access to cash in the village, as a company,” said Hanna.

According to Hanna, the lack of job options for women in the region makes Du Anyam one of the best alternatives for women in the region.

“We saw that there were weaving skills or skills that were passed down from generation to generation and there were raw materials for natural fibers in the area. Then, we saw that the interest in these handicraft products was quite high in the domestic market,” continued Hanna.

Then, Jeni Karay who continues to educate young people and the wider community about various social issues and is involved in various international and local NGOs on youth, environment, health and education, explained how important social media is as a shaper of public opinion.

“I remember very well my professor when I was in S1 said that people who have social media are more influential people. Those who can’t control social media won’t have any influence,” said Jeni.

Jeni said that without social media, people don’t care whether they are businessmen or politicians, people won’t know either. Therefore, it is important for us to convey to the world our efforts and achievements.

“Not everyone is born with a privilege. But everyone can start from simple things that slowly roll into big things,” she said.

Then, a young Papuan leader and author of the book ‘We All Want to Live in Peace’, Steve Mara explained that one of the most important things in achieving peace is good communication.

“When we build good communication with other people, this will narrow the chances of conflict,” said Steve Mara.

He said that strategic communication is very important to be carried out and owned by the younger generation. He stressed the need to create communication and dialogue where all parties respect each other.

Steve explained that with ongoing strategic communication, various ideas, thoughts, hopes, and aspirations were able to be well communicated between the younger generation in various regions, especially in Eastern Indonesia.

“Friends from the East also have big dreams to develop Indonesia,” said Steve.

He said that it does not mean that friends in Papua only want to develop Papua, but of course also the Indonesian people. It is not impossible that the younger generation from Papua already has a master plan to develop other regions, even to Indonesia. This can and may happen if there is good strategic communication.

Meanwhile, Paskalis Kaipman who is the son of a farmer from Boven Digoel tells his story which has a hard and struggling background, thanks to his persistence and hard work.

However, for his struggles, Paskalis won a bidikmisi scholarship to complete his undergraduate degree, then obtained an LPDP scholarship to study at American University majoring in the educational policy and leadership.

Paskalis explained that one of the problems dealt with the younger generation of East in underdeveloped areas is the lack of access to communication and information. However, now the network infrastructure development has been massive so that the younger generation in the East must use this potential as much as possible.

“We can’t just wait for the opportunity to come to us. But as young people we have to be creative. We have to find information. We have to try to pick up the ball to achieve our goals,” he said.

Then always the moderator, Aisha Kusumasomatri said that education is very important for the lives of young people in the future. He also invites the current generation to achieve the highest education.

“One of the things we have to do as young people to improve our quality as human resources is to get the highest possible education to be able to bring about change,” he said.

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