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Small Change or Big Change

By Sammy Ladh *

“Caring is not the same as giving money”, that is to say, about the sound of messages posted on various posters installed at many intersections in Yogyakarta. Then at the bottom of the poster is written another message with a smaller letter, “doled your coins to a social foundation or religious body”.

Many people who agree with the content of the message on the posters. The argument is that many of the observed beggars can be very productive, young and valid. If someone looks flawed, many may still be suspected of pretending. Another argument is the existence of a union that employs beggars, rented children to foster more compassion, and the incomes of beggars who, if calculated, may be more important than office workers. There are also those who do not agree and say not to beat all beggars as “criminals”. Some also look really ripping and need a hand.

As an institution that has been helping and serving street children for over ten years, Rumah Impian also believes that giving money on the street is not a wise thing. Especially in the case of street children, the small change in the streets is a big challenge for the Dream House mentorship program. The money given in the streets will only make the child more comfortable to live on the road. Every day, a street child can make money between Rp50,000 – 100,000 Rp, depending on age and how the disobedient appearance perela. However, easy money is usually spent playing games, chatting on the Internet, drinking alcohol and drugs (from inhaling aibon glue to marijuana and drugs).

Once the children who accompanied Dream House were sensitized and learned to save the coins they received. Not everyone is interested, but some children who do so can save enough money to buy train tickets to their places of origin, as well as gifts for parents waiting in the village.

Then how? To give or not to give, when the begging hand is extended? For many people, compassion can not sometimes be stopped by call signs, but arguments about the “falsification” of beggars may cause many people to get angry too, so the question is “so how?

In fact, the posters of this call have given way to people who really care and have pity. “Distribute your coins to a charity or religious body,” the message reads, which is dearly written in smaller letters. More regrettably, there is not too much information available about the foundation or institution that can receive the peoples’ money channels. The lack of information and the number of corruption cases in the country mean that people choose to give it away right away and ignore the message on the posters.

Dream House has campaigned for a program called Mitra Hope / Hope Partner. This is a commitment to give a minimum of Rp 50,000 / month for foster children in Hope Shelter. Hope Shelter itself is a division that serves as a place of care for children who have decided to leave the street and return to school. The goal of Hope Shelter is to have children between the ages of 7 and 15 living on the street, whether they still have parents or have been separated from their parents. In Hope Shelter, these children are cared for, depending on their age and abilities, and are fully funded, both for tuition and living expenses (food, clothing, pocket money, health, etc.). Every year, there are always street kids who have been returned to school by Dream Home.

Rp 50,000 / month or about Rp 1667 / day through Hope Partners program will obviously be different from the change you give in the street. Thanks to Hope 50K Partners, your small change will make a big difference to the street kids that come with it. Each given donation is also recorded and reported on its use every month. Donors can also visit the Refuge of Hope at any time, to see how your donations have been used to improve the quality of services for children. As a form of responsibility, every year the dream house is audited by an independent auditor.

So if you care but do not want to give your change in the streets, maybe the Hope Partner Dream Home program can be one of the alternatives.

* Founder of the Yayasan Rumah Impian Indonesia

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