Saturday, April 23, 2016

Giving back to build a coalition for Indonesian Children



“It’s all about giving back!” said 11 year old Kafin Sulthan, one of a whole host of Indonesian celebrities who came together to help launch the #GiveBackIndonesia campaign. Support for children can come in all sorts of ways and this latest example that Kafin talks about is a fantastic collaboration by singers and public figures who recorded a song and video entitled “Give Back Indonesia.”

The song and video, produced by music producer Stephen Laurence Harvey, aims to motivate viewers to give back to help improve the lives of children in Indonesia. Mr Harvey donated the recording to Madam Noor Traavik, the spouse of the Norwegian Ambassador for Indonesia, who later gave the rights to song and video to UNICEF.

“It's a beautiful experience for me, this song is about giving back. I think it’s meant to be, because when I came up with the idea, I got all the support, everyone seems to have time to do it. So basically the whole process is meant to be and this is my way to give back,” Mr. Harvey said during the press conference.

“I encourage and challenge, more and more young Indonesian artists to step out and help by doing similar projects, more philanthropists could donate to help the children around the world.”

The handover took place yesterday at the Norwegian Ambassador’s Residence attended by a throng of journalists and some of the artists, including Kafin, who participated in the song and video.

The collaboration resonates with UNICEF’s belief that to deliver the best results for children we all need to work closely together and join efforts with many stakeholders, including the private sector, because children are everybody’s business. The private sector plays an important role in helping improve the quality of children’s lives.

“This collaboration shows that everyone can contribute, regardless of their backgrounds, for the lives of Indonesian children,” said UNICEF’s Representative in Indonesia, Gunilla Olsson during the press conference. “When I go to the fields around the archipelago and I go to villages, I see children with hope and determination in their eyes even though there are no teachers or doctors where they live. And I hope this initiative could help them have more teachers or doctors. One in three Indonesian children is stunted. Stunting is a condition where children are short for their age and this could really impact their future lives and opportunities. So I am really hopeful that this collaboration will help grow organically, a coalition for Indonesian children.”

Alongside the child star Kafin who attended the press conference, were a number of other well known singers, including Joe Taslim, Syaharani, Dira Sugandhi, Sandy Sondhoro, Kyla Christie, Reza The Groove and Brianna Simorangkir.

"I am really touched with this initiative and I will do anything in my capability to keep helping the children of Indonesia with my talent," Dira Sugandhi said. It is a sentiment shared by her fellow artists including Joe Taslim. "I fully support Give Back for Indonesia because as a parent, I too am very concerned with the future of Indonesian children, they are our future generation", said the actor.

Actor, athlete and singer Joe Taslim encourages others to raise their hand and Give Back to Indonesian Children.   

Partnerships between businesses and UNICEF offer mutual benefits, combining the proven value of Corporate Social Responsibility, raising the profile of the company while enhancing UNICEF’s work on behalf of the most vulnerable children in the country. The video recording will be used by UNICEF to enhance fundraising efforts and comes with a link to the UNICEF donation page to encourage people, businesses and private sector, to Give Back to Indonesian children.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

RapidPro technology supports UNICEF’s work to vaccinate children

By Kristi Eaton, Communications and Knowledge Management Officer, UNICEF Indonesia



Lilis is nervous. Her 2 and 4-year-old sons are preparing to receive the polio vaccination, and she worries they may cry. The two boys huddle around her as she speaks at a local posyandu in Cilincing, a low-income neighbourhood in north Jakarta, and works to soothe them.

Still, Lilis knows the importance of her sons receiving the vaccination.

“It’s really important for them to receive it so they do not get sick from polio, because their feet can become non-functional,” she said.

Indonesia ranks sixth in the world in the number of unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated infants. Each year, an estimated 700,000 infants do not receive immunization services. Low-income urban areas like Cilincing are especially at risk for under-immunization, leaving children vulnerable to outbreaks of measles, polio and diphtheria. UNICEF is supporting the government to turn this situation around _ capitalizing on new communication technologies that allow for better monitoring and targeted interventions where existing systems fail.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Fighting malnutrition in Indonesia: ‘My children are crying for life — not death’


A few months ago, 2-year-old twins Randy and Rendy Tabun looked fragile, lethargic and thin. The twins suffered from severe acute malnutrition and remained firmly planted in their mother’s lap, unable to stand or walk on their own.

A local nurse in their village of Nitneo village in Kupang District in eastern Indonesia took notice and the boys became two of the first patients enrolled in a new programme to treat severe acute malnutrition.

Across Indonesia, malnutrition is a serious public health problem. More than 12 per cent of children under the age of 5 are acutely malnourished. Severe acute malnutrition affects 1.3 million Indonesian children and moderate acute malnutrition affects 1.6 million. With these figures, Indonesia ranks fourth in the world in the number of children suffering from acute malnutrition.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

It took the death of one child to immunize the next


Junaedah, Kosir and Baby Mohammad Faqih: “My baby is now ready-to-go-to war against diseases.”

Junaedah’s only daughter, Soliha, would have been 5 years old now had she lived. But like too many children in Indonesia, little Soliha died at just 3 months old, from a disease she could have easily been protected from.

Her death has not been for nothing, though. The little girl’s passing helped spur Junaedah, also known as Juju, and her husband Kosir, to immunize the youngest of their six children, Mohammad Faqih.

Juju says she has already seen the difference between Mohammad Faqih and his older brothers who weren’t immunized.

“My other children were small and skinny, different from this little boy who is chubby and healthy: immune and rarely sick,” says Juju, who hails from Kluwut village in the District of Brebes, Central Java, Indonesia.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Launch of the Integrated Child and Family Welfare Services – A Dream Coming True

By Astrid Gonzaga Dionisio, Child Protection Specialist

Vice Mayor of Tulungagung (sixth from the right) with the Vice Chairperson of the Parliament (third from the left) and heads of agencies (from Left: Head of Women Empowerment, Child Protection and Family Planning; Head of Bappeda; Chairperson of East Java Provincial LPA; Head of Sub-Directorate for Neglected Children, Directorate of Child Welfare, the Ministry of Social Affairs; Director of Public Hospital; Astrid Dionisio – Child Protection Specialist and I Made Sutama, Child of Field Office from UNICEF; Head of Social Welfare Office; and Secretary of the local Government of Tulungagung. © UNICEF/2015/Astrid Dionisio

I have been to Tulungagung in East Java before. But this time, the excitement of my trip has been different. It was like a dream come true.

Developing a child protection system was once a big dream. Figuring it out was already complicated but not until recently when the district of Tulungagung, East Java, has finally launched the first model of an integrated child and family welfare services - the Unit Layanan Terpadu Perlindungan Sosial Anak Integratif (PSAI).  The road was not smooth, and the journey was long. Tulungagung is one of the districts in East Java  known to be one of the major sending areas for female migrant workers, commonly referred to as "buruh migran perempuan."

In 2011, UNICEF Indonesia embraced a new approach to child protection focusing on system building. From then on UNICEF together with the Ministry of Planning (Bappenas) and the Ministry of Social Affairs initiated processes toward developing a comprehensive child protection system locally known as SPA (Sistem Perlindungan Anak).