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Indonesia

Demography

Indonesia's population is the fifth largest in the world. The population age structure is typical of a middle-income country, with the majority of the population aged between 15 and 40 years old. This favourable demographic structure puts the country in a strong economic position at present as it represents a strong working age population and low dependency ratio.

However, in decades to come concerns may arise over the ageing population as pensioner welfare and superannuation policies are not yet well established. The sex ratio is almost exactly even at 49.66% female, 50.34% male.

Economy

Despite strong economic performance since 2010 and continual economic growth throughout the global financial crisis, Indonesia still struggles with poverty stemming from problems of unemployment, inadequate infrastructure, civil unrest and unequal regional resource distribution.

Major exports partners are Japan, China and Singapore and products include oil and gas, electrical appliances, plywood, textiles and rubber. Agriculture represents a declining proportion of the labour force (39%), whilst industry (13%) and services (48%) continue to rise to meet global demand.

Geography/ culture

Indonesia is the world's largest archipelago, consisting of 17 500 islands spanning a distance of 6 400 kilometres from the Indian Ocean to the Pacific. It's geostrategic positioning as a bridge between Asia and Australia/ Oceania significantly influences the nation's culture, politics and economy. Jakarta is the capital city and one of the most populated urban regions of the world, located on the island of Java. Other major islands of Indonesia are Kalimantan, Sumatra, Sulawesi, Papua and Timor.

Although not officially an Islamic state, Indonesia is home to more Muslims than any other country. Other religions including Hindu, Buddhism, Confucianism and Christianity have a presence in various regions. Bahasa Indonesia is the official national language, but most citizens are multilingual in speaking their local dialects also. More than 700 languages are spoken there today, and English is a growing influence.

Government & Politics

As a former Dutch colony, Indonesia secured its independence after WWII and is now a republic with an elected parliament and president. Its post-colonial history saw two periods of authoritarianism: Sukarno's "Guided Democracy" (1957-65) and Soeharto's "New Order". Instability ensued as evident by the numerous changes in constitution and ongoing battles with corruption and terrorist activities.
Since October 2014 Joko Widodo has been the democratically elected president of Indonesia.

Issues Facing Indonesia Today

  • Education: High quality education is distant dream for those who cannot afford it. In less affluent areas, many families cannot pay for their children's education because running costs are high and not supported by the government. Lack of accountability means teacher absenteeism is high, curriculums are not well implemented, students are mistreated or excluded for not grasping concepts quickly and children regularly go without meals for lack of food causing widespread malnourishment. In Nusa Tenggara Timur, one of the poorest provinces of Indonesia, three quarters of school aged children do not enroll or drop out of school each year because fees are unaffordable.
  • Water and sanitation: In absolute terms, more than 40 million people do not have access to safe drinking water sources, and more than 100 million people lack adequate sanitation. In rural areas, village people walk across steep, rugged terrain to collect water each day representing a large opportunity cost on productivity. Furthermore, malaria is major issue associated with exposed bodies of water, affecting up to 20% of Indonesians. Immunisation rates are low due to lack of access to healthcare.
  • Natural disaster: In recent years, Indonesia has suffered an unprecedented series of natural disasters due to its global position on active tectonic plate boundaries. Some of the more notable catastrophes include the Boxing Day Tsunami of December 2004 in Aceh, the Nias earthquake of March 2005, the Yogyakarta and Central Java earthquake of May 2006, and the West Java earthquake and tsunami in July 2006. In addition, outbreaks of disease and ongoing disruptions to local markets cripples disaster affected areas for subsequent months and years.

Sources:

CIA WorldFact Book - https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/in.html

The World Bank - www.worldbank.org

United nation Development Reports - http://hdr.undp.org/en/countries/profiles/IND
Unicef - http://www.unicef.org/index.php

Batik Artisans
  • Category: Life / Vocational Skilling, Social Enterprise
  • Grant: $10,001 to $25,000
  • Target Group: Any
  • Gender: Female
  • Age: Adults
  • Country: Indonesia

Batik Artisans

Batik is an ancient cloth dyeing technique which has been practiced in South-East Asia for many centuries.  The traditional handicraft tells a long history of acculturation as intricate patterns reflect an array of cultural influences from surrounding regions.

Holistic Community Development
  • Category: Disability Inclusive, Education, Health, Social Enterprise
  • Grant: $25,001 to 75,000
  • Target Group: Any
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Any
  • Country: Indonesia

Holistic Community Development

In a country where half of all households are clustered around the poverty line, the needs of the poor are many.  Labour is one of their few assets, but opportunity for employment is often limited by lack of education and cultural barriers.  If provided with the means of attaining a good job, they have the chance to earn their way out of poverty.

Primary Education Access
  • Category: Education
  • Grant: $25,001 to 75,000
  • Target Group: Any
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Children
  • Country: Indonesia

Primary Education Access

Until recently, the closest primary school available to students in a remote Indonesian village was 5km away across steep and treacherous terrain. Each week the children would make the journey and sleep in makeshift huts every night before returning back to their home village for the weekend. This was a difficult situation for the community who expressed a strong desire to build their very own primary school.

Public Health Initiative
  • Category: Health, Water Security
  • Grant: $10,001 to $25,000
  • Target Group: Any
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Any
  • Country: Indonesia

Public Health Initiative

As Indonesia is midway through epidemiological transition, its health system must strain under simultaneous burdens of infectious and degenerative illnesses.  Health inequity is a deep-seeded problem as locational disparities exist in institutional capacity, access to services and prevalence of disease.

School and Dormitory
  • Category: Education
  • Grant: $25,001 to 75,000
  • Target Group: Any
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Children
  • Country: Indonesia

School and Dormitory

On one of Indonesia’s remote islands, lack of access to clean water and quality education were seen to be two of the root causes of poverty.  Having built strong ties with the community and engaged locals in the decision-making processes, our project partner has turned aspirations into realities with the installation of a water pump and the construction of a school.

School Project
  • Category: Education
  • Grant: $25,001 to 75,000
  • Target Group: Marginalised people
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Children
  • Country: Indonesia

School Project

In the Tobasa region of Indonesia, educational biases and inequalities take many forms. Teachers arrive hours late; students with learning difficulties are harshly treated; poor families cannot afford adequate nutrition; religious favoritism weighs upon academic results; and children are denied access to education if they cannot afford the mandatory books and uniform.

Tertiary Education Support
  • Category: Education
  • Grant: $25,001 to 75,000
  • Target Group: Marginalised people, Orphans
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Adolescents
  • Country: Indonesia

Tertiary Education Support

If without financial means, highly competent and motivated students in the Tobasa region of Indonesia are met with few opportunities to pursue further education upon their completion of high school.  Places at the only government university in the area are extremely limited as applications outnumber available positions by approximately ten times, so many aspiring scholars must turn to the private sector.

Water Tanks
  • Category: Water Security
  • Grant: $10,001 to $25,000
  • Target Group: Any
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Any
  • Country: Indonesia

Water Tanks

For many years the residents of a remote village in Indonesia have been walking across rugged terrain to collect water from a natural spring.    The return journey presents a burdensome and time-consuming test of endurance as the water load must be carried up a steep mountain face from sea level.

Well Constructions
  • Category: Water Security
  • Grant: < $10,000
  • Target Group: Any
  • Gender: Any
  • Age: Any
  • Country: Indonesia

Well Constructions

In rural West Papua, villagers are poorly informed about microscopic water borne diseases.  They cook from the same uncovered water hole that they clean and bath in which is closely positioned next to animal pens and sewerage zones.