Post on 30 Aug 2017 18:17

British Embassy Jakarta ‘Discovering Indonesian Islam’ is a summer placement programme for British students or young activists to obtain a cultural experience through teaching English at an Islamic boarding school (pesantren) or in an Islamic university in Indonesia. The successful applicants are given a travel grant which covers flights to and within Indonesia, while accommodation and food will be provided by the host institution. The British Embassy Jakarta has appointed UMS to be the host institution in Solo, and this year has been the second time for the university to receive such honor. Alifya Valiji from Coventry University, England and Sohaib Ashraf from Heriot Watt University, Scotland and Josie Richardson from King’s College London, England are currently teaching English in UMS and some Muhammadiyah schools surrounding Solo. The three volunteers were very excited because they received a warm welcome from the staff and also the students. Alifya came to Solo before Sohaib and she started teaching first in SMA Muhammadiyah 2 Surakarta and SMP Muhammadiyah 7. She introduced the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to the students, and they listened to her explanation enthusiastically. On the second week Alifya and Sohaib visited SDIT Muhammadiyah Al-Kautsar Gumpang, and gave a talk about Islam in the UK in Pondok Shabran UMS. They were also invited to an intercultural discussion by STIKES PKU Muhammadiyah Surakarta and had a sharing session about British foods with some PGSD students of UMS. On this occasion they tasted some traditional Javanese snacks such as pukis, nagasari, putu ayu, and lepet jagung. “ I like the sweet corn thing. What’s it called? “, said Alifya referring to bakwan jagung that she ate the other day. On August 16, Alifya and Sohaib attended a tirakatan night in Perumahan Nilasari Gonilan to commemorate Indonesian’s Independence Day. They were impressed by the way the community comes together to prepare the event. In the event some children wore traditional clothes that represent some provinces in Indonesia and danced to the traditional music. “It is a small but lively event. ” Sohaib said. “I’m having so much fun”, Alifya added.