ADOC CLUB Indonesia
To provide a platform for all the ADOC center partners to exchange their experiences and ideas of the ADOC project, ADOC Secretariat hosted one ADOC Club event in the Medan, Indonesia. In this event, all the partners from Sumatra assign representatives to participate the ADOC Club. ADOC Secretariat gathered precious suggestions and ideas for the future from ADOC partners. This platform also can make ADOC partners have a closer relationship and exchange the training resources from each other.
Secretary General, ADOC Secretariat
2014 marks the ADOC Project’s 10th year. To sum up the project’s implementation and achievements, ADOC Secretariat compiled the fruitful results of the ADOC Project into a monograph. 32 touching stories were included into record, describing momentous changes of lives of women, children, other disadvantaged groups, and significant shifts of small and medium enterprises within 10 ADOC partner member economies(PMEs). The monograph is not merely an APEC publication; it holds the common-shared memories of 680,000 ADOC trainees, 10 ADOC PMEs, and numerous private enterprises, NGOs, and international volunteers.
In collaboration with the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), the ADOC project is offering free E-commerce courses, which has attracted many young people from Hanoi to sign up. The ADOC Award, an online entrepreneurship contest, has further stimulated the youth to come up with many creative ideas.
For instance, “Sweet Love,” a website selling perfume established by Ms. Hanh, is a very competitive venture proposal. Perfume is in great demand in Viet Nam, but there aren’t many shops selling perfume. At the same time, the market is filled with counterfeit and substandard products, which fail to satisfy consumer needs. With the right promotion, a website selling quality products at a reasonable price should do well. Ms. Hanh’s website offers a variety of products. Since a bottle of perfume is easy to transport and the price is quite affordable, Ms. Hanh’s business model is highly suitable on an e-commerce platform.
As someone who has enjoyed travelling since she was a little girl, Ms. Huong always paid attention to the people and things she met when travelling with her parents.
On entering college, she discovered that it was possible to turn travel planning into a lifetime career. While receiving training from ADOC, she began designing her own website that provides information on cheap flight tickets and affordable accommodations. By building this website she has also realized her own dream.
Ms. Huyan has loved playing house since she was a child. She enjoyed using paper or other materials to build her future house and make scaled-down versions of real furniture. However, she did not know how to share her hobby with others. It was not until after she came into contact with ADOC that things changed. Through ADOC training and its online contest, Ms. Huyan set up probably Viet Nam’s only website that sells “scaleddown houses.” She believed that she can share these beautiful things with others around the world through the Internet.
When presenting her project, Ms. Huyan said, “Although they are just small model houses and this is a small website, they represent an unrealized dream.” With the assistance of the ADOC project, Ms. Huyan finally was able to take her first step in making her dream come true.
Papua New Guinea, situated south of the equator, has abundant rainfall and is mostly covered with rainforests, which have only been moderately developed in some regions. The ADOC centers here have offered access to online information, and promoted digital technology and devices. They also ran into difficulties and strived to assuage the impact.
Although rainforests are preciousnatural resources, the idea of rainforest preservation is not popular in this economy. Access to more related information through the Internet might make a differene. On one occasion, volunteers of the Lae Rainforest Foundation brought a group of children to the ADOC. The children were curious about the computers and machines in the center, for they rarely have an opportunity to see, not to mention touch these things. Staff at the center taught them how to use the Internet to look up the definition of rainforests, and all the measures taken around the world dedicating to rainforest preservation. The children moved the mouse excitedly, learning various facts about rainforests. As they learn more about rainforests by accessing information through the Internet, they might be more aware of the importance of rainforest preservation and realize that every citizen has the responsibility to protect this valuable natural resource.
In addition to provide locals with computer and internet access, the ADOC centers also took opportunity to showcase other devices. At the anniversary of the Papua New Guinea University of Technology (UNITECH), the ADOC would diplay digital cameras, computers, and color printers. Color photography and printing were also offered on-site, so that local people could directly try their hands on applying modern technology in daily life.
Albeit these efforts, Papua New Guinea still faces many obstacles when it comes to narrowing the digital divide. Besides the deterrent price (due to high transportation expenses and import tariffs), computers chould not be popularized because of the costly but unstable power supply. Power failure is the most common problem. Classes are interrupted by sudden power failures of uncertain duration, which is highly disruptive to schedules. Moreover, when the power is restored, the power surge damages the computers.
To mitigate the problem, in addition to the original specifications set by Chinese Taipei, four medium-sized uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems were acquired when the ADOC centers were established to protect the valuable computers. In 2007, the UPS systems bought in 2006 were damaged by unstable voltages. The ADOC Secretariat specifically increased the budget to purchase 23 small UPS systems. They allowed classes to continue for a short period of time during power failures while also protecting the computer equipment.
Yossa was born in 1997 in Jakarta, Indonesia. Her father died when she was little. Since then, her mother had to work very hard in order to provide enough food for her and her brother.
To her mother, the most important thing is Yossa’s and her borther’s education. Although they stayed with their relatives, life was still difficult for the family.
When Yossa was five, her mother told her that she received welfare grants to support the two children. Yossa and her borther could live in Kampus Diakoneia Modern (KDM). They had no choice but start their new life in KDM, where they are educated and taken care of. They learnt math, science, social studies, Bahasa, history, and so on.
In 2009, kids at KDM were told that the ADOC Secretariat planned to donate 20 computers and a server to set up an ADOC in KDM. That was an exciting news! With the training programs provided, children learnt to type, and used computer applications such as Microsoft Office, movie maker, Adobe and Photoshop. In addition, with internet explorer, these kids were able to reach the world through the Internet. “I even learnt how to design by following the online tutorials,” said Yossa.
Yossa is very thankful for the facility provided by the ADOC project. Now, in order to return the favor she received, she serves in the center to tutor younger children and volunteer to design posters and brochures for fundraising activities in KDM. “I plan to keep learning more computer skills every day,” said Yossa. “I would not be able to make it without the support from the ADOC project.”
Over one hundred thousand Vietnamese women moved to Chinese Taipei because of marriage in recent years. Some built a happy family in this foreign economy, but some
suffered and the marriage did not last. After the divorce, most of these Vietnamese mothers choose to bring their children back to their homeland, where the living expanse is lower and the responsibility of raising the children could be partially shared by their own parents.
However, the children, whose nationality is not Viet Nam, are not entitled to medical insurance or national education in their mothers’ economy. Their life in Viet Nam with their grandparents is more difficult than Vietnamese children’s. It is estimated that 2,000 to 3,000 children are living in such circumstances, and they inevitably become a disprivileged group with less opportunity and resource.
Eden Foundation, a non-government organization in Chinese Taipei, launched a project (the name of the project literally meant “pave a way home” in English) to raise fund for these Chinese-Taipei-born children living in Viet Nam in 2005. But the foundation lacked a solid financial base to offer necessary services in kindergartens in Ho Chi Minh City, especially providing computer-related education and facilities.
Fortunately , the ADOC saw this problem and extended a helping hand. The institute donated several computers to the kindergartens supported by Eden Foundation in Ho Chi Minh City in 2006. Thus, children in Ho Chi Minh City could enjoy the same opportunity as the children in Chinese Taipei did to access computers, which is a powerful tool in learning Chinese. Song, the chief of staff of Eden Foundation, said, “Children liked to move their mouse based on the instruction of their teacher when they were playing games in class, or review phonetic symbols that were taught on computers.”
He also expressed what he expected from these children. “When they are more familiar with the computer, they will begin to surf the Internet and become more familiar with Chinese Taipei, or contact relatives in Chinese Taipei,” Song said.
Most of these Vietnamese mothers still want to send their children back to where they were born when they grew up. The distance from Viet Nam to Chinese Taipei may be long. But the children could take their first step of this long way home, by clicking the mouse at hand.
Jakarta is one of the most populous cities in the world. Walking on the street of this metropolis, one can easily feel the energy of this fast-growing economy. However, one can also easily see the part of the population that has few resources to rely on. Substantive amount of school-aged children, whose family could not afford their education, live and wander around the streets, struggle to survive by singing, begging, vending things to tourists, or pilfering. They have little to expect for their future, unless someone extended a helping hand. Lucky for some, the joint program of Kampus Diakonia Modern (KDM) and ADOC Project changed their fate and that was how Selvi and Debbi got out of the street.
Selvi is a girl coming from Sumatra. When she was 11 years old, she ran away from home and went to Jakarta to see the big city. Shortly afterwards, she had to live on the street because she could not support herself. Wandering on the street and engaging in dishonorable activities such as stealing, she knew that she was walking down the wrong path of life but had no way to escape the plight.
Debbi was another street child. Because her parents had to work in Jakarta, she was raised by her grandparents in Flores. In her eyes, they were her true parents. However, when Debbi was seven years old, her parents suddenly brought her to Jakarta. Debbi didn’t want to go to Jakarta but had no choice. She tried very hard to get along with her parents, but still couldn’t adapt to the new life with them after two years, during which
she missed her grandparents badly. So she ran away from home. However, without money to go back to her grandparents’ home, Debbi soon became street child in Jakarta and searched through garbage for food.
Fortunately, one day, Selvi and Debbi respectively met a staff member of Kampus Diakonia Modern (KDM), an organization that has been working to get children off
the streets of Indonesia for 40 years. They were invited to KDM and, after being told that KDM could offer food, shelter and education to underprivileged children, they immediately agreed to stay with KDM. The days of being haunted by cold, hunger, and threat to life was over for the two girls. Furthermore, they got the opportunity to be educated in KDM, learning math, science, social studies, foreign languages, and cooking.
What was more joyful to them was that an ADOC center opened in KDM. In June, 2009, the ADOC was set up and the ADOC Secretariat donated 20 computers and a server. All of the children were anxious to try using the computers. With the help of the training programs, they first learned to type, and then to use computer applications such as Microsoft Office, Movie Maker, Adobe, and Photoshop. In addition, they could access the world by surfing the Internet, writing emails, and interacting with friends on Facebook.
Selvi is so glad that the ADOC Project in collaboration with KDM brought her back to the right path, and helped her make friends with people around the world. To her, learning to use computer has not only opened a window of knowledge, but also made her life more colorful.
Debbi loves to attend computer classes such as Adobe Photoshop CS4, Adobe InDesign CS4, WordPress and Blog.com provided by ADOC. Besides, she also learned to type, and surf the Internet. Debbi found that she could easily search for information she wanted and interact with people online. She even thought that she could do business on the Internet, and firmly believed that someday her dream would come true.
Receiving education used to be a far away dream for Selvi and Debbi, not to mention using computer to reach the world. But the ADOC project helps realize their dreams by greatly increasing their competitiveness in the job market, opening their minds and changing their lives. They all feel very grateful for what the ADOC has provided to them, and would like to express their most sincere appreciation to ADOC.
Jorge Durán was a student at Lord Byron School in Lima, Peru. One special thing about the school is that it provides Chinese language courses. Durán still remembers the scene when this arrangement was announced. “It was five years ago, at the beginning of the school year, our school director introduced us a new faculty member: our Chinese teacher.” He recalled, “Everybody was shocked! We thought it would be so hard to learn this language that our grades would be awful!”
Durán was very nervous yet excited about his first Chinese class. “When I first looked at a Chinese character, I was astonished! That was the first time I saw something like that, and I didn’t understand a thing.”
To his surprise, learning Chinese wasn’t that hard. “As the school year went by, I realized that learning this new language was actually much easier than I had thought. It is, perhaps, easier than any other language. In Chinese classes we learned not only the language, but also the culture.” Dur l was referring to the Chinese dances and sword fighting incorporated by the Chinese teacher in the class.
Learning Chinese was even easier now that the ADOC has established an ADOC eSchool. “At the ADOC we can learn Chinese with the assistance of new technology.” Durán explained, “We can practice typing Pinyin, and expand our vocabulary with the help of internet and special software. Now I can type a sentence on the computer and quickly find out the meaning.”
“I am very happy to have the opportunity to learn the beautiful language. I also realized how important it is to learn this language,” said Durán, “and I especially want to thank the ADOC Project!”
Nookan Chansri owns a small shop in Khon Kaen, Thailand. She didn’t receive much education due to her poor family background when she was young. She was aware of the popularity of PCs and the Internet in the past few years, but she didn’t pay much attention to this. She remained focused on how to run her small business to support her family.
A few years ago, Nookan Chansri’s neighbor recommended her to sign up for the computer training course of the ADOC project founded by the College of Asian Scholars (CAS) in Khon Kaen. Nookan Chansri knew she was cut off from the information society and she needed to catch up with the trend. However, she hesitated because of the tuition fee and the investment of time it required, which might affect her business. Fortunately, the program was free of charge, and the class was only on weekends. So she was happy to enroll in the program.
In the beginning, Nookan Chansri found it difficult to use a computer. However, thanks to the patient instructor, Nookan Chansri and the other students began to make progress. She was also aware that she needed to familiarize herself with computer hardware and software in order to improve her business. An instructor told her to start with MS Office software, which would definitely enhance the efficiency of her accounting and inventory controls.
Nookan Chansri now puts to use the skills she acquired at the ADOC, which makes running her business much easier. She now has more time to plan for business expansion or to be with her family. However, what Nookan Chansri does most frequently is to use her niece’s PC to review the ADOC courses and assignments she has already completed!