Thursday, October 16, 2008

Bandung Street Scenes: Exploring Street Photography # 4

Today I visited my friend's blog, Michelle's The Rambling Woods - The Road Less Travelled, and learned about a day that I think all bloggers should know: October 15, the Blog Action Day.

Blog Action Day is "an annual nonprofit event that aims to unite the world’s bloggers, podcasters and videocasters, to post about the same issue on the same day." The aim is, according to this movement's website linked above, "to raise awareness and trigger a global discussion" on issues important to all human kinds. Last year, the issue discussed was Environment. This year, it's Poverty.

Poverty exists in any societies, in the West and East, North and South, and in poorer as well as in more afluent countries. It is a complex issue of which no clear and simple answer has yet been found to overcome it. However, this should not prevent us from playing our parts in helping those who are aflicted in the ways that we can.

Bloggers like us can play our part by raising awareness of this common issue of ours and share ideas and/or reporting efforts being done in our respective communities to aleviate poverty.

With the photo I posted today, I'd like to deliver this message:

Given a fair chance, most people would try to get themselves out of poverty. These street vendors selling toys at Bandung's Kepatihan Street are probably not poor in the absolute sense, but what they do - in my humble opinion - is symbolic of human dignity: Given a fair chance, everyman and woman would try their best to make a decent living and lift themselves out of poverty. Charity is one way to help the poor; but giving a fair chance and, as Indonesian would say, a fishing line is better than giving them the fish.

The Government of Indonesia is currently doing both: It provides BLT (Bantuan Langsung Tunai) or Direct Cash Assistance ("the fish") and creates different programs of microcredits to help them start their own small/home businesses ("the fishing line").

According to official figures, Indonesian poverty rate currently stands at 15.4 percent (as of March 2008), with poverty being defined as the inability to meet "the daily minimum requirement of 2,100 kcal per capita plus the non-food minimum requirement, such as housing, clothing, schooling, transportation, household necessities, and other basic individual needs." The value of expenditure is counted in rupiah.


the donG said...

it's good to know that you are support blog action. i was supposed to support it too but i realized that its out of the topic from my current theme.

the philippines is as well into this issue. action and planning is needed then comes cooperation and discipline.

i like your black and white shot here.

Hendrawan said...

Nice scene,I know that issue (Blog Acton Day) but, what should I do?

Share my point of view... said...

I would love to join in the support but currently, I do not have any appropriate photos but I make sure to voice out my support for fellow bloggers in their quest.

JM said...

I had no idea about Blog Action Day. Everything that can be done is never too much to aliviate poverty! Very nice initiative.
Your photo is great! The things they sell on the streets!... And the little boy is so cute! :-)

Mahmud Yussop said...

This is an excellent reminder in view of the coming economic recession. I guess to prosper the world the we need knowledge and the key would be to provide relevant education to those who have missed it or needing to upgrade it especially the low income group.
Good shot, saudara Eki.At least they have the initiative to do something than choosy about jobs.

Layrayski said...

I enjoyed the expression on the boy's face as you took the picture. =)

I wanted to join the blog action day last 15 but I had no photos in my arsenal at that time. I'm two days too late. I now have the photos but 15 is long gone.

It's always informative reading your posts. The ways in alleviating poverty in your country sounds familiar to me. I think that's one way our government is also undertaking in order to help. I just don't know if the plan ever took off from the drawing board.

Rambling Woods said...

It was lovely of you to do a poverty post Eki. I was disturbed to read on one blog that poor people choose to be poor. That made me angry. I agree with you that people need a way to be assisted to help them find a way to work and to keep their dignity.

babooshka said...

I missed the day, biy have tried to catch up with posts. Good to see when the worlds's citizen's put their minds together something good can happen.