Dear AIYA Members and Supporters,
The AIYA Annual 2017 is a showcase of what YOU, our fabulous chapters and members, have been up to this past year! This year, we welcomed a new chapter, AIYA Eastern Indonesia (active in both Makassar and Kupang), and energetically pursued AIYA’s mission to connect, inform and inspire young people engaged in the Australia-Indonesia relationship.
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Even bigger and better than our inaugural issue last year, the AIYA Annual 2017 includes messages of support from Australia’s outgoing Ambassador to Indonesia, Paul Grigson, and Indonesia’s new Ambassador to Australia, Kristiarto Legowo. It features updates from our ten most active chapters, who ran everything from sports days and film nights to careers events and debates, as well as an update on our 3rd annual NAILA initiative!
This year’s AIYA Annual includes, for the first time, contributions from individual members. From a large number of submissions, we have selected three of the best pieces for your reading pleasure – Nick Dobrijevich’s story of meeting East Javanese punk band Crucial Response; Steph Pearson’s account of joint Aus-Indo efforts to support those affected by Mt Agung’s eruption; and Martha Weruing’s heart-warming story of finding her place in the Australian community. We hope you enjoy their work.
We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of our members and partners for your ongoing support of AIYA over the years.
The AIYA Annual celebrates everything AIYA has achieved in the past year, and we encourage you to take a look (you never know – you might see your face!).
Iona Main Jayne Fendyk
Chief Editor Assistant Editor
At midnight on ANZAC Day, submissions to our third annual AIYA Survey officially closed, and what an amazing result! After a one-week extension, to allow any stragglers the chance to respond (you know who you are!), we have tallied some headline statistics which we’re delighted to share. Firstly, the 2016 survey attracted one of the largest responses we have ever received, and we owe it all to the members and friends of AIYA. Thanks for taking the time to share your views and ideas with us. These results enable us to make AIYA an even better organisation, and ensure we continue representing your views in our mission to connect, inform and inspire Australian and Indonesian young people.
We were thrilled to receive responses from residents of every state in Australia, and in close to two thirds of the provinces of Indonesia. We achieved a rough balance between female and male, Indonesian and Australian, and across our target age groups in our survey respondents. People from many different stages of education and fields of expertise were represented, including a number of students still in high school!
Of those already in the workforce, close to one third of respondents identified themselves as working in the education and training sector. This reflects the huge importance of education in the Australia-Indonesia relationship, and the passion of Australian and Indonesian teachers and trainers.
We were inundated with valuable suggestions and ideas which will be used to inform AIYA’s advice and advocacy programs. The AIYA Survey team are now working to create a final survey report, in which we will provide a detailed analysis of the results and highlight the key messages and suggestions we received. We’re looking forward to delving into all your feedback and valuable ideas. The report will be released in June-July, so watch this space!
Thanks to Nick Mark, Mike Tarn and Sam Bashfield from the AIYA Survey team, as well as Natasha Burrows and her legendary Comms team, for all their hard work.
AIYA’s annual survey has grown and changed since its origins in 2013, but its fundamental purpose is the same: to identify what is important to our members, to understand their ideas and to learn how they would like the Australia-Indonesia relationship to develop. Over time, we can track changes in the mood of our members, and understand what new issues are important for them. From the New Colombo Plan to foreign workers and everything in between, AIYA wants to hear your thoughts! We’ve had a phenomenal response so far and can’t wait for more – so jump online and fill out the survey if you haven’t already. A full report will be published in May, but for the time being here are a couple of juicy stats from the submissions so far:
- Almost half of our Australian respondents speak advanced or fluent Bahasa Indonesia, and half of Indonesian respondents speak advanced or fluent English. AIYA’s membership base obviously means our survey respondents are more likely to have studied Indonesian (for Australians) or English (for Indonesians) than the general population of both countries, but even we were blown away by the impressive and encouraging linguistic skills of AIYA’s members!
- Survey respondents identified education, government relations and business/economic engagement as the top three issues affecting the bilateral relationship. With around one third of our respondents working in the education sector, this isn’t surprising. Do you think education is the most important factor affecting the relationship? Have your say!
- Lack of cross-cultural understanding was by far the most commonly identified impediment to good relations between Australia and Indonesia. Is it because our cultures are so different, perhaps? What’s your opinion?
- A staggering 95% of respondents agree that the New Colombo Plan has been effective in improving the bilateral relationship – but improvements need to be made. Comments on the matter include:
“As of 2016 the New Colombo Plan is not extended to post-graduate students which may not capture the potential of many advanced-level students with an interest in Indonesia.”
“[The NCP is] effective, but a costing exercise needs to be done: $67,000 could be split into three NCP scholarships … [and] opening the opportunity up to more students.”
The survey is open until midnight on 25 April, so get in quick and tell us what you think!