Bina Antarbudaya Banda Aceh and Indonesian chapter YES Alumni Association (IYAA), in collaboration with Syiah Kuala University Debating Club (UDC) and Flower Aceh held a women's empowerment training camp with the theme "HOPE (Home to Opportunity and Practical Equality)". This activity lasts for three days, March 8-10, 2019 in the community-based tourism area, Gampong Nusa, Lhokngah. As many as 24 female students from various high schools / equivalent throughout Aceh attended the training camp, after going through the stages of administration selection and collection of essays online.
HOPE is an activity that is mostly funded by American Councils through the YES Alumni Grant program proposed by Ratu Aisyah Chairunisa. He is a student at the Syiah Kuala University, as well as an alumni of student exchanges to the United States through the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange & Study (KL-YES) program for the 2014-2015 class.
"This event aims to provide a deeper understanding of the issue of gender equality between women and men to high school students in Aceh. Given that this is an important issue, moreover the number of cases of violence against women continues to grow, "said Ratu.
During the three days of training, participants were presented with materials delivered by experts in each field. The material presented, including tips on starting a business by Sri Ramadhani ST, basic concepts of gender and the importance of representation of women in the governance system by Ms. Suraiya Kamaruzzaman, ST, L.LM., MT, and the position of women in an Islamic perspective delivered by Ustaz Masrul Aidin bin Muhammad Ismy, Lc.
Participants also had the opportunity to simulate parliamentary debates facilitated by the debate club Syiah Kuala University. Muhammad Iqhrammullah, as the founder of the club, said that the current debate had become a forum for the creation of an exclusive discourse on the issue of gender equality, especially in the midst of a society that was less welcome towards the issue.
"The approach through debate competition is a strategic step to create public awareness of the importance of gender equality," he said.
At the end of the activity, participants were invited to make handicrafts in various forms of flower decoration by utilizing organic waste by PKK Gampong Nusa mothers. Aside from being an opportunity for recreation, through this activity the participants can also hone their creativity.
The various awards were distributed to participants with the best essays and winners of the parliamentary debate simulation. For the best essay category and the most outstanding essays, each of them was given to Citra Aulia and meutia May Oryza, both of which were from MA N East Aceh Scholar. Whereas for the honorable mention essay category given to Syarifah Naila Fitri (SMA N 10 Fajar Harapan) and Latifanny Yulanar (MAT Daarut Tahfiz). While for the parliamentary debate simulation was won by a team consisting of Rawdlatul Jannah (SMA N 10 Fajar Harapan), Rana Sulthanah Ridhwan (MA Ruhul Islam Anak Bangsa) and Salshabila Nadya (SMA N Modal Bangsa Arun).
According to Emily G. Abraham as the representative of the United States Embassy who attended the event, felt that this event was very inspiring and was happy to be given the opportunity to be able to meet with the participants. The same impression was also expressed by Nuraini, a student at Bandar Bener Meriah 2 n Senior High School, "This hope program can motivate Indonesian women to continue their careers and open our horizons in various fields to create gender equality in Indonesia." (PR Unsyiah / fer)