I was privileged to have been sent by my pastor, Mr. Agus Budiman, on behalf of our church, Indonesian Praise Centre (IPC) in Melbourne to visit Sedau in April 2010. It was a rather short stay, however truly a meaningful one.
Although my mother was born in Pemangkat, not too far away from Sedau, she had moved to Jakarta since she was 11 years old and had been living there ever since. As such, this was the first trip to Sedau for both me and my mother, who accompanied me in this special journey.
Arriving in Singkawang, we were welcomed by Mr. Ganda’s group (also from Jakarta), who introduced us to some of the staff of LEPBESIS. Following lunch, we took the opportunity to buy fruits, which we packed and distributed when visiting some of the children sponsored by LEPBESIS. During this house visit was when we witnessed the conditions in which the children live, which was truly an eye opener to us. The ways of life there and the standard of living there were very different to what we are used to, not to mention the levels of hygiene and education.
We were also blessed to have been able to witness the regular gathering event organised by LEPBESIS, where all the sponsored children enjoyed lunch together and received their scholarships. It was a joyful and inspirational experience for us to see those bright smiles.
It has been such an honour that IPC as a church has been given the opportunity to be a blessing to the community in Sedau to boost the awareness of the importance of education by sponsoring the children’s tuition fee. From this visit, we recognise that there are plenty things yet to be done in this community and that it is in IPC’s vision to continue and further support this cause. IPC and its congregation are currently sponsoring 182 children ranging from elementary through to high school and hoping to sponsor more.
We would like to acknowledge the hard work of all the staff members of LEPBESIS who work whole-heartedly and tirelessly as volunteers. We would also like to thank Mr. Robert Lay in Sydney, who has been a tremendous liaison and organiser throughout the years. We pray for the growth of LEPBESIS, such that more lives would be changed in Sedau through education.
We would also like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2011. May you be fulfilled with the love and joy of Christ. God bless.