“It turns out that there are a lot of things that they never knew before…”

Nadia Pramudita (Indonesia, AC 10-12)

Every time I watch the news, I am always paranoid about hearing the word “Indonesia”. Indonesia has been in such a hard time lately. If I were to list every single thing, this page won’t be enough. When we thought the worst is over, something else happened. In last October, two disasters hit several parts of Indonesia. A tsunami hit Mentawai Islands and a volcano erupted in Central Java. I can still remember the panic attack in 2004 when the tsunami hit Aceh and now our nightmares are back. The volcano didn’t stop spitting dangerous fumes and hot lava forcing many people to evacuate. Mount Merapi, the volcano that the local people believe is their guardian, is now endangering them. They have also lost the “gatekeeper” to the volcano, who was their spiritual leader.

While this was happening, I was here in AC waiting for news about family and friends back home. There are many rumours going around about other possible disasters. That made me scared and it affected me for quite a while. After talking to all of my co-years and second years in other UWC, we agreed to see the situation first, and then think about what we’re going to do. We had some good news that many countries had come to our aid and they had so many supplies and help from all around the world. Indonesia is much more prepared now; we’ve learnt from our previous misfortunes and tried our best to overcome these disasters as well.

Because of this, I had the opportunity to tell my friends in AC about Indonesia, our culture and our life. It turns out that there are a lot of things that they never knew before, for example, that we have “gatekeepers” for our volcanoes etc. Not only did they listen but my friends also offered to help. St. Donat’s Church (our community church here) is willing to help for this year’s charity, and me and my friends might also organize some fundraisers this year. After three months of living here, I have something to tell about the UWC experience I’ve gained, because now I know there are people in the world that actually care about what is happening out there.

-United World College Student Magazine-

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