AccorHotels has opened a second education centre in Indonesia for less privileged children to help develop their skills. The Sanggar Yayasan Peduli Tunas Bangsa centre in Bedugul Bali will allow local children to be taught Basic English, computer skills, gardening, cooking, and other life skills by professional teachers and volunteers from AccorHotels Bali – Lombok region.
An on-site clinic offers complimentary medical assistance and checkups to the children as well as free nutritional meals. One of the beneficiaries, 10-year-old Ni Nyoman Sri Aningsih, whose parents are vegetable farmers in the Bedugul area, said, “I want to be a teacher when I grow up so that I can teach other children like myself.” She believes that going to the Sanggar will help her achieve her dream.
AccorHotels’ first Sanggar opened in Cipinang Jakarta in 2001; it has since benefitted close to 200 children and their families. One of the beneficiaries of this first centre is Ms Rismayanti, who joined when she was eight and was provided with food, financial and educational aid. Today, the feisty 21-year-old works at the Mercure Jakarta Sabang in its Human Resources Administration team.
Ms Rismayanti said, “I feel that the programme at the Sanggar has enriched and improved my life, without which, I would probably be married with kids and would be a housewife now. Instead, I am independent and can even afford to buy my own air ticket to travel to Bali.” Both centres are funded by A Tree For A Child Foundation, the social and environmental programme of AccorHotels Indonesia, which combines environmental protection and poverty alleviation through education, healthcare, nutrition and reforestation.
“We believe we have a responsibility to give back to our communities that have supported us over the last two decades,” said Garth Simmons, Chief Operating Officer of AccorHotels Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore. “We take a strong leadership position in developing the future of our children.
“Today, AccorHotels through A Tree for A Child Foundation continues our commitments and dreams to bring a brighter future to underprivileged children in Indonesia as well as build a sustainable environment in Bedugul Bali with the opening of our second education centre.
“AccorHotels is a leading global hotel operator with a network of almost 3,800 hotels in 92 countries, including over 680 hotels across Asia Pacific.The group places strong emphasis on our community and environmental programmes through Planet 21. Our programmes go beyond tackling carbon issues to enriching communities with new forms of livelihoods and economic opportunities,” he added.
The Sanggar Yayasan Peduli Tunas Bangsa, housed in a 600m2 building, is located in Candikuning Village in Bedugul Bali. The Sanggar can accommodate 70 children and to kick start the programme in January 2016 twenty scholarships will be given to selected children. The scholarship will pay for their school fees, books, stationery, and school uniforms. Scholarships are awarded to children from less privileged backgrounds, between six to eight years old, and will fund their education until they graduate from vocational schools or universities. The number of scholarships awarded may increase over time.
The higher education scholarships are awarded based on each individual’s academic competency and a selection committee will also conduct an interview with the family to ensure that the grant reaches the most motivated students with good academic standing.