February 2020 key highlights Graduation, Teluk Dalam - On Saturday 22 February, 10 students of the Teluk Dalam Learning Centre graduated from the TIF program. As part of the graduation ceremony, the graduates performed a rendition of Disney's Frozen for their parents and peers. Each student was assigned a character and delivered all dialogue in English, and Teacher Halim narrated the story in Bahasa Indonesia for their proud parents to follow along. See more about Teacher Halim below..! Learning Centre Maintenance - In February we concentrated our Learning Centre maintenance efforts on repairing bathroom facilities in Sialang. In the building provided by the community for TIF's use, which also functions as a local health post, the bathroom had become rundown and students and patients were often relying on the neighbouring mosque. With the importance of regular handwashing back on the global agenda, and in alignment with TIF Curriculum Unit on Personal Hygiene, the repairs to the Sialang bathroom facilities are timely and welcomed by everyone in the community. Community engagement - TIF attended and participated in a number of community events in Bintan this month, including two local boat races, a Department of Tourism and Culture meeting on sustainable tourism, a round table discussion on sustainability and economic development in Bintan and the Riau Islands more broadly, and the launch of a new tourism destination in Pengudang. It is encouraging to see that TIF's local profile and reputation continue to grow.
Teacher Halim - Tenggel and Teluk Dalam
Halim has been working at TIF for almost two years - he teaches at his hometown Tenggel on Poto Island, and at Teluk Dalam on Bintan Island. Tenggel is a small island community of between 250-300 people - the village is a new settlement and the majority of residents are Suku Boton, hailing from Sulawesi. Halim is part of the first generation born on the island - in fact, Halim was born in the family home as his grandmother was a village midwife. Until now, the community only has electricity four hours per day which is powered by a diesel generator, and there are children dropping out of school after primary school to help support their families or to seek work on nearby islands.
But not Halim. His father wanted his son to have more opportunities and choice in his life, so he worked hard as a fisherman and prioritised Halim's education, including sending his son to senior high school on Bintan Island. All of his dedication and sacrifice paid off, and now Halim is one of only four Tenggel residents to complete a university degree. It is clear that Halim has inherited his father's drive and determination, and in recent years he has coupled that with his own learning at university and experiences working with TIF. Like his father, Halim sees the powers of education and exposure to new ideas and perspectives, and is also guided by his own long-held passion for helping others.
In the classroom, Halim has facilitated some amazing progress among our students. When Halim started working with TIF, we didn't yet have a Learning Centre in Tenggel. Instead, Halim began teaching in Teluk Dalam, and this month some of his original students graduated from the program. The students' performance of Disney's Frozen was a true example of the three Cs that guide TIF's work: confidence, critical thinking and collaboration. And it goes without saying that the students enjoyed every minute! Halim is keen to continue promoting the importance of education and staying in school among his students and their communities. Working with TIF in 2020, Halim is committed to increasing his teaching hours and improving his class management skills to help his students access the opportunities and choice that his father gave him. We congratulate Halim on all of his great work so far, and look forward to working with him to deliver the TIF Education Program in small island communities of the Riau Islands