Farewell to our Indonesian friends!

The FAC Truck rLast Friday we farewelled the Indonesian delegation who came to Newcastle to explore community engagement at the Family Action Centre and the University more generally. I think it was a successful visit and hopefully we have commenced an ongoing relationship with The Directorate General of Islamic Education.

Mizan Sya’roni (right), Jarot Wahyudi and Alan Hayes discuss a potential memorandum of understanding.

Mizan Sya’roni (right), Jarot Wahyudi and Alan Hayes discuss a potential memorandum of understanding

There is already discussion about the potential for another delegation to come early next year.

Mizan Sya’roni and Alan Hayes exchange gifts

Mizan Sya’roni and Alan Hayes exchange gifts

Beside meeting the delegates, for me some of the highlights were hearing about the work of the Centre of Excellence for Equity in Higher Education (including AIM High and the Children’s University) and the tour of the The UoN Legal Centre. The tour of the beach and the visit to Blackbutt to see some local wildlife went down well and it was great to share a meal together at Serambi,  a local Malaysian restaurant (Newcastle doesn’t have an Indonesian restaurant) so that we could spend some informal time together.

Checking out some koalas at Blackbutt Reserve

Checking out some koalas at Blackbutt Reserve

We were lucky enough to be joined by Chris Dureau, who speaks Indonesian, on the last day to help the delegation reflect on the relevance of the trip to their work in Indonesia.

We finished with a performance by the Wakakulang traditional dance group and the delegation responded with a couple of Indonesian songs.

Wakakulang  dancers

Learning the emu dance

It took quite a bit of work (and there are quite a few things I would change for next time), but it was a great experience. Thanks to out Indonesian friends, Dee and everybody who helped out.

If you liked this post please follow my blog (top right-hand corner of the blog), and you might like to look at:

  1. An Indonesian delegation exploring community engagement
  2. Teaching community engagement to students from 29 disciplines
  3. Blogging as an academic
  4. Ethics and community engagement
  5. Bottom-up community development
  6. 9 principles for supporting families and communities

 

About Graeme Stuart

Lecturer (Family Action Centre, Newcastle Uni), blogger (Sustaining Community), environmentalist, Alternatives to Violence Project facilitator, father. Passionate about families, community development, peace & sustainability.
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