Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Ruddy Lumangkun dan Reading Interest in Indonesia

On the last weekend, at Saturday noon…it was very hot day outside. Billy was in Cikarang to lead a company training, while the children and I were staying at home, spending the time together, reading some books.

While I was reading a chapter of the book, I heard a call from outside, and I have been told that someone wanted to see me. Reluctantly, I went out from the room, and wondering who was coming at that time.

I found an unknown man with pair of glasses standing in front of the gate, with smiling, asking me whether it was Billy’s house. I tried to figure out my husband's friends.....No clues at all...

Ruddy Lumangkun

Then he asked me whether I knew him. Ehmm? Then he introduced himself as Ruddy Lumangkun, from Manado, South Sulawesi. He is walking around Indonesia archipelago, and he has walked for 15 years. Now, he's on his way towards Sumatra island.

His opening conversation attracted my attention. I asked him to come in and ask my maid to prepare a glass of ice tea for him. Then he started to tell his story while I was studying his file which consists of official letters he got from various Departments, individuals and companies in Indonesia, Banks statement, articles about himself, photos with Rano Karno and other notes. All the letters and notes were testifying about his journey. Most of them on original letterhead! I remember I saw one from Sekretaris Negara!

He plans to write two books once he complete his journey. One book about NKRI and the other one about his faith on God's guidance during his walking.

Before he went off, I took some pictures of him. Since I don’t have enough money with me, I promise him that I will write something about his mission on my blog so that more people would know about his journey online. When he has gone, I was a little bit regretful for not jotting down the information I needed to complete my writing about him. However, if you type in Ruddy Lumangkun on a search engine, then you'll find many information about him.
if you type in Ruddy Lumangkun on a search engine, then you'll find more information about him there.

Seminar International Pengembangan Minat Baca
Now, I’d like to correlate Ruddy Lumangkun’s story with the Reading interest in Indonesia. In the last two days before I met Ruddy, I was invited by National Library, well, by mba Yati Kamil, to be honest, to attend the International Seminar on Reading culture. There were many International speakers there talking about their experiences about reading habit.

It was Tantowi Yahya, Indonesia Reading Ambassasor 2006 and Rashidah Haji Bolhassan from Pustaka Negeri Sarawak session who are talking about reading habits. Both of them agree that reading habit should be instilled in the family at the first go. Tantowi Yahya stated that to build Indonesia’s future readers now is to involve family as the main source of readers, starts with parents reading to the children. He even mentioned that their tagline for 2006 campaign: Ibuku, perpustakaan pertamaku. Meanwhile, Rashidah shared the experiences in Sarawak on their family library campaign to build reading interest by having home library competition! Interesting idea.

From Singapore, Mrs Kiang-Koh Lai Lin also shared their programme called Read! Singapore 05. How they make people in Singapore starting aged 15 years old to read a selected titles. And it worked! The initiative taken by NLB adapted from highly successful reading programmes around the world like “One Book, One city” project in US, “One Book, one Brisbane” in Australia. The key objective of this reading initiative is to promote a culture of reading among Singaporeans as it aims to provide Singaporeans an opportunity to rediscover the joys of reading , by creating a common topic of discussion and conversation amongst the people, as Mrs Kai wrote. For kids, NLB also has a programme for children called kidsREAD.

At the end of seminar, Deputi Bidang Pengembangan Sumber daya Perpustakaan, Hj Suprihati SH, MBA concluded that reading interest need to be developed regularly with coordination with relevant organizations, private or national, to create a reading society and life long learners. Gerakan Membaca Nasional (National Reading Movement) will be happened with the availability of reading facility, Taman Baca Masyarakat and home library.

Hopefully, experiences from other countries would enrich our knowledge to have more creative idea in formulating a real plan to instill love of reading in Indonesian community!

Well…may be we can learn from Rudy Lumangkun. We cannot expect instant result. He still has two more years, so there would be 17 years, to complete his Expedisi cinta Tanah Air by walking around the archipelago. The patient, high commitment and willing to share (well ...Ruddy may have many people support his mission because he's not ashame to meet people and share, right?) are the important elements to reach something that valuable that last forever. As we are now realize and understand the instilling reading habit should start immediately especially to yourng children, we also have to share the idea to others and take action about it.

We will not wait for those years to make Indonesian people read! Let’s start reading! NOW! What book are you reading today?