What We Are Doing

Almost 3,000 children In Indonesia Race for Survival 1 Sep 2015

Written by Henda Gandamanah, Campaign Coordinator, Communications and Advocacy at Save the Children Indonesia

Save the Children Indonesia held a month Race for Survival campaign from 1 – 29 August 2015. 2.980 children from 88 schools in Jakarta and Aceh were directly participated in the race. In total more than 5,000 people involved in the race, they are participants, students, teachers, chaperones, local and central government officers, journalists and Save the Children’s staffs. Through this race we asked the government to commit to end preventable child, maternal and newborn death by 2030 and support the associated targets in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.

At the first phase the race was organized at schools. Every participating school then selected 10 children to represent the school into the final race on the 29th of August. Some schools organized a join race at the initial phase because they do not have space for the race. Anyone was invited to join the social media campaigning by uploading their race pictures and video. Save the Children provided small gift to the ones with the most like and shared in facebook, twitter and instagram. 

Prior to the race, the children wrote messages addressed to the government about life they wish to have by 2030 (end of the SDG). Some children expressed their hope in drawings. We sorted 100 messages and drawings, plan to print them as a book and then hand to the President in September prior to the UNGA launching in New York.

Some high level government officials attended the race this year. The Mayor of Aceh Tengah were attended the race in Aceh. The Minister of Health’s technical advisor was attended the race at North Jakarta. And at the final race which was attended by about 1,000 participants three high level officials attended, they are the Senate Chairman Mr Irman Gusman, the Minister of Woman Empowerment and Child Protection Yohana Yembise and Legislator Irma Suryani.

At the end of the race, we got several government commitments. The Minister of Women Empowerment and Child Protection supported our advocacy ask by giving her commitment to increase the age standard for girl to marriage from currently 16 year old. The Senate Chairman committed to support bigger budget allocation for maternal and child health, also to decrease geographic inequality in health services. The Minister of Health, through her technical advisor, also highlighted her commitment to end preventable child death by 2030.

Race for Survival this year was considered as the biggest one so far in term of number of direct participants, race duration and the media coverage. This year race was also special as one promising local artist, Viza Mahasa, created a great theme song for our race for survival. 

Check out all the photos on Flickr.