A team of volunteers has gone on a 10-day trip to Indonesia to organise skills development workshops in a Reach Out To Asia (Rota)-supported school in the village of Bayat in the Klaten district, Java.
The programme has been organised under the sponsorship of Vodafone Qatar and in partnership with the Titian Foundation of Indonesia as part of a joint Rota-Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar (VCUQ) initiative.
It was in response to a May 2006 earthquake that hit the Klaten district, that Rota supported the construction of a modern vocational school in Bayat in collaboration with the Titian Foundation. The initiative benefited over 1,000 students, as well as educators with on-going teacher training initiatives in Bayat and the surrounding villages.
Mohamed Saleh, Rota community development manager, said: “We have put the emphasis on skills transfer, which will have longer term benefits. This is the first time that a Rota volunteer trip has focused on increasing teacher capacity by way of facilitating workshops. Bayat School has been involved in the programme development process from the very beginning by identifying areas where capacity-building is required for their students and teachers.”
The trip programme includes tailor-made workshops and sessions so that both the VCUQatar volunteers and the local students and teachers get the most out of the trip.
“We’re positive that this visit will have an extremely positive impact on the immediate community,” said Luisa Gentile, head of corporate responsibility at Vodafone Qatar.
“We know that 40 teachers and 276 students at the school will directly benefit. However, the programme is made in such a way that the impact will be felt far beyond the direct beneficiaries. We hope that the workshops will benefit the wider Klaten region, through the increased skills of art teachers and subsequent improvement in quality of art education.”
VCUQatar student volunteers will conduct peer-to-peer workshops covering topics related to the arts, such as training in Photoshop, fashion design, pattern-making, sewing, and logo design. Each session will have 30 students from the Bayat School, with the subject content and lesson plans exclusively designed by the VCUQatar students themselves.
VCUQ faculty volunteers will hold two teacher training workshops. First, 10 art teachers from the Bayat School will attend a workshop covering pedagogy and enhancing creativity in student work.
Secondly, about 30 teachers from the surrounding Klaten region will attend a teacher training workshop covering the same areas.
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