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In our effort to rebuild schools in need Happy Hearts Indonesia does not only partner with companies and institutions but also with schools in Jakarta. We believe that this not only benefits the children we are providing with a safe school building but also offers a unique and invaluable learning experience for the students involved in the fundraising process.

One of the schools we have worked with multiple times in the last couple of years is the Anglo Chinese School (ACS) in Jakarta. In 2017 students from grade 11 formed a focus group consisting of 17 people to come up with a strategy to raise the funds necessary to rebuild one school in Nusa Tenggara Timur (NTT).

Here is how they did it.

The first step was deciding on a project site. Out of the schools Happy Hearts Indonesia proposed to them, the four group leaders chose SD Kofi, an elementary school outside of Kupang. The school was in very poor condition, with the building consisting of simple bamboo walls that only served as a temporary solution.

Condition of SD Kofi before the rebuild

To reach their target amount, the students decided to go a different route than their classmates fundraising for other projects. So instead of planning a big fundraiser event targeting their peers, they prepared proposal letters and send them to as many companies as possible, targeting the companies’ CSR programs. In addition they approached the companies in person and gave presentations on their project to win them over and secure them as sponsors.

In order to manage all the tasks that needed to be done, they divided the group into smaller task forces. Some of them participated in smaller and recurring fundraising activities such as the CAS food stall, where they sold homemade food at the school. Other groups designed and ordered the CAS shirts, wrote sponsorship letters and handled the email account, put together presentations and came up with themes and designs for the murals on the school wall in Kupang.

ACS students selling food in the CAS stall

Planning to raise several hundred million rupiah in a short period of time can be overwhelming and scary, especially as a group of students that were inexperienced in approaching big companies and successful business leaders. Although the ACS students had initial concerns about reaching their target, they managed to overcome these obstacles by staying focused on the goal and putting their differences aside to be able to make a difference for children in Kupang. “They all wanted what’s best for the children.” said Aurelia, one of the student leaders.

It may be scary to see the amount we are supposed to raise but every drop of hard work and dedication will be paid with the bright smiles and the happiness of the children we are helping.” – Aurelia, ACS student

Their hard work paid off and in about 2 months the students raised over IDR 400 million, more than enough to finance the rebuild in Kupang. As the final step of the project, the whole group flew out to SD Kofi and volunteered for a week there in December 2017. They painted murals on the school walls, cooked for the children, took part in the opening ceremony and even became teachers for a day.

sd kofi rebuilding in progresssd kofi rebuilt

The rebuilt SD Kofi is now fully equipped with 3 classrooms, a teachers’ room, toilets, indoor and outdoor furniture, toys, educational materials and colorful murals. ACS students enabled not just the 59 children at SD Kofi, but also hundreds of future children who will receive education and start their dreams at the school.

“You should not give up before you tried. Who knows what kind of miracle will happen if you try hard enough? Believe in yourself and your teammates, you will get results if you are honest and hardworking.” – Aurelia, ACS student

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