My name is Harun and I am the Program Manager at Church World Service (CWS) in Sulawesi Indonesia, I have been working here for over a decade. At CWS we are working on three key projects: urban refugee protection, climate change adaption and disaster risk reduction, and nutrition and food security. My role is all about connecting the community needs with the opportunities available.
One of the greatest challenges in Indonesia is and will continue to be climate change. From flash flooding to drought, we are faced with numerous challenges. Here most of the community are working as farmers and they rely on the weather, but climate change means their employment has become much more unpredictable. At CWS we are working to build the capacity of farmers, particularly women through women’s loans and savings groups.
CWS is working on climate change adaptation, to ensure farmers can make a more consistent income. This project aims to find alternative food sources for the community and create other means of income to ensure communities can continue to work. This project also teaches climate change adaptive farming techniques, such as terracing, drip irrigation, selecting climate adaptive seeds for farmland, and how to match the farming cycle with the current climate.
As part of a diversity of income, CWS are helping to increase financial literacy for women. Often women can have a role in the home or assisting on the farm, but they may not have financial literacy. Through the CWS women’s saving and loans groups there have been significant increases in monthly income, after the women have increased their financial knowledge. Women are also provided with training in additional practical skills, such as making coconut oil or brown sugar, which they can then sell on to their community at the markets. Some household income has increased by 50% and some even 100%.
The flow on effect from these groups is that children can get an education. Our focus is on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction, but you can really see the broader impact from diversifying income. When we increase employment opportunities, we can really see the importance of the role women play in the community, and previously that role can be invisible. This is making the community aware of the importance of the role that women can play in helping the community to adapt to climate change.
Thanks to your support, CWS can continue to provide sustainable means of income that works for the community. Your support is critical in helping to adapt to climate change in the future.
Local Partner Profile: Church World Service
Act for Peace’s local partner, Church World Service in Indonesia works in at-risk communities to foster a culture of safety among primary school-aged children (6-12), promote community-based disaster risk awareness and management, promote WASH programs and awareness and initiate community action that will lead to increased community resilience.
Indonesia is one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world. It is at risk from volcanoes, flooding, tsunamis, landslides, and earthquakes. Indonesia’s most at-risk people, including children, face ongoing hazards from many kinds of accidents related to climate change-induced hazards and inadequate and unsafe infrastructure. Poor hygiene and sanitation also threaten health and wellness.
Act for Peace gratefully acknowledges the support of
the Australian Government through the Australian
NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP).
- For the staff at CWS as they continue their important work.
- For the communities working toward climate change adaptation, for confidence in new ways of working.
- For children to be provided with more opportunities for education.