We’re not dead yet – Merapi 2010 experience
When asked about programmes for women refugees, my friend, who is working with theIRC looking over refugees in Thailand, gave me an assuring advise,
“Women are terrific at identifying the needs of the community and organizing to get needs met. Put them in charge and they’ll sort it all out!“
With that in mind, I went to Yogyakarta and became one of the many volunteers. True enough. In the almost 1 week living among 435 refugees from Gondang and Pangukrejo villages in STIE YKPN campus in Yogyakarta, I saw that they are the most active ones. From running the kitchen to maintaining the campus clean, they outnumbered the men. Yes, they were sad. Anybody who have just lost all of his/her properties will be (and all I could say was “at least all your family members are safe”). They were sad, but not desperate. There is still life inside of them. They were using their energy in such a way that I didn’t have worry about creating a daily programme for them anymore.
In the following days, I will try to post some glimpse of their lives in the refugee camp, and of those volunteering for Merapi relief. As usual, click on the images to see more details.