Most of you have probably heard that I went to the UK. Not to meet Thom Yorke (although I’d be smiling like Joker all the time if I had the chance to bump into him around Trafalgar Square), I attended the Global Changemakers Guildford Forum 2009 instead. I might say that I was so lucky to get that opportunity. I’d like to thank my mum and dad, my family & friends, The British Council UK and Indonesia–especially Mr Fajar Anugerah who took a good care of me during my stay in London & Manchester, Astrid Wulandari (who let me know about this event), The Gibbons, The Pettits, The Nugrohos (who let me slept over at their place). It was a lifechanging experience.
I was there for two weeks. So how was London? It was real cold. Around 1 to 7 Celcius degrees. It was killing me on the first days, but it got better.
was held at Horsley Park, Surrey. There should have been 60 participants from 37 countries but the two of us couldn’t make it there, so there were only 58. I met a lot of people, more like a family than just friends. They peeled something that covered me for years, they helped me rediscovered myself. At first, it was really hard not to speak Indonesian at all. But then again, it was a learning process.
The facilitators were John Martin and Linda Gaskill who also helped for the Road to Davos 2008 (last year’s similar event). They gave a lot of knowledge and insight for us to do our projects when we got home. Yes, I forgot to mention that we were supposed to be doing something in our countries. We needed to design a Community Action Project (CAP) and submit it to Gaby, the CAP manager, on the last day of the forum.
The activities were awesome! They helped us to discover the guidelines of working in a team, they put us in a situation “If you were in the same elevator with Bill Gates and he asked about what your activities, how would you respond in less than 27 seconds?”, there were also a reception in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office where people were invited to meet us, they wanted us to discover our weaknesses and things we’d like to know through a workshop called “The Marketplace”, and many more. Basically, they want us to build our own network and do something great in our countries.
On the last day, we had to present our CAP. I presented that I wanted to make a youth conference in Jakarta on July 2010 (PS. I’ll tell you about it later!). They said that my presentation was great, so I was relieved. After the presentations, we had to vote for “The Davos 6”. So, among the 58 of us, there’ll be 6 people who’ll go to the World Economic Forum to represent the Global Changemakers. I didn’t get that chance. It was okay though. I don’t it really matters, what matter was, I met a lot of new friends from all around the world, and had the chance to tell them that Batik is really from Indonesia and there were some good impacts from the Tsunami disaster: RI and GAM reunited as one province, Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam.
I met a lot of best friends. Mintwab, Elsabe, Charlie, Sarah, Esnatt, Chiara, … I miss them all. :(
A Bit of Traveling
I didn’t have much time to travel around the UK. I had like two or three days to see things in London and used the tube more frequently than I ever used TransJakarta! I visited British Museum, National History Museum, Science Museum and Sherlock Holmes Museum. The museums were just awesome. The interior design, architecture, things inside the museums are very interesting. The best thing from them was, they are all free! No admission fee needed, but there were donation boxes. I saw couples everywhere around the museums, make my longing for the bf grows much much worse. I also visited football stadiums, including Stamford Bridge (where I saw John Obi Mikel!) and Emirates (a few hours before the Arsenal-West Ham match started!). I ate fish and chips also, the traditional food from the UK. I tasted the traditional and the ‘fast food’ one. I went to the very famous Madame Tussaud’s (luckily I “met” Obama and Warhol! Yippee!). I had a little bit of shopping at Colchester and M&S in London. Not much though, everything was extremely expensive, compared to Indonesian prices, hehehe.
iCoCo & BC International Conference 2009: Community in Action – People and Practice
It was held in Manchester, so I went there by train on Tuesday. It was about community cohesion. I didn’t really understand about it but I had the chance to brainstorm things with new people and tell them that we, young people, are doing something. The things in their mind were that they can never work with young people who (they think) are less responsible and less of a fighter than adults. I told them that we are courageous to do things, sometimes even more than adults do. I also met two kids from the UK Youth Parliament. We had reception and dinner at the Manchester Town Hall and I chatted a lot with people (tried to use the “27 seconds” things. Thank you John & Linda!).