Ines Wardani, a 16-year old student from Bayat in Central Java, was recently awarded second prize at the International Forum of Entrepreneurs held in Cordoba, Argentina, in the middle of May this year. Ines was one of scores of students whose education was sponsored jointly by the Titian Foundation (Indonesia), Reach Out to Asia, and Vodafone Qatar.
“This is an incredible achievement for our program participants,” said Luisa Gentile, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Vodafone Qatar, the program co-sponsor. “Ines’s award shows that our programs really do benefit those who need it, and gives children from underprivileged backgrounds the chance for a better life and hope for a greater future.”
The International Forum of Entrepreneurs is organized by JA Worldwide and a different country hosts it this year. Ines, along with four other Titian Scholarship-sponsored students from Indonesia, made the trip to Argentina this year. All were trained for a week in Jakarta in preparation for making the trip to Cordoba by communicating regularly with other students from around the globe participating in the event.
Ines was a regular student who was unable to continue her education due to financial reasons, until the Titian Foundation scholarship ensured that she was able to go to school. Her dedication to her schooling was unblemished, and she was determined to show up every day, even though it required her to bike more than 15 km to get to school. She took up her passion of batik (a traditional textile art) studies at the SMKN 1 ROTA School, and is heavily involved in volunteer activities in her community.
“Ines’s account reads like a Hollywood story,” said Lamis Sabra, International Programs Manager at ROTA. “Through hard work, dedication to her studies, determination to succeed, and support from the Foundation, Ines was able to leave Indonesia for the first time in her live, and get recognized for her achievements in a country half way across the world.”
As a result of her award, Ines became somewhat of a folk hero in her village. Ever since her nomination for the prize was announced earlier this year, everyone in Bayat wanted the opportunity to meet the girl who, even though faced with the difficulties of poverty like the rest of her community, overcame all odds and became a celebratity.
“We hope that Ines’s story sets an example for everyone in her community, and inspire them to pursue their hopes and dreams,” added Ms. Gentile. “In fact, we should all look at her for inspiration to reach our own personal goals.”
Ines Wardini is one of 257 students co-sponsored by the Titian Foundation, ROTA, and Vodafone Qatar in Bayat. For more information about ROTA’s programs in Indonesia, please visit www.reachouttoasia.org or http://www.facebook.com/VFQABETTERWORLD
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