Butet Manurung has spent most of her life living and educating the “Jungle People” (Orang Rimba) in the jungles of Indonesia. An Ashoka Fellow, TIME Magazine ‘Hero of Asia’, World Economic Forum “Young Global Leader”, and a holder of other accolades, she will be speakingabout her journey into the Indonesian rainforest to start a school for the Orang Rimba.
She recently launched her book “The Jungle School” and will be happy to talk about this too.
Date: 28 June (Thursday) 2012
Time: 7.30pm – 9.30pm (talk will be followed by Q&A, then mingling)
Venue: The Hub, 113 Somerset Road
We hope to see you there!
About Butet Manurung
Butet Manurung was born in Jakarta, Indonesia in 1972. She earned her degrees in anthropology and literature from Padjajaran University, Bandung, Indonesia. As an educator and activist, she has received international recognition – UNESCO’s “Man and Biosphere Award” in 2001, TIME magazine’s “Hero of Asia” in 2004, Ashoka Fellowship in 2006, “Asia Young Leader” in 2007 and World Economic Forum “Young Global Leader” in 2009.
The Jungle School is Butet’s first book, originally published in Indonesian as Sokola Rimba in 2007. All proceeds from book sales benefit the SOKOLA foundation – bringing literacy to indigenous Indonesians in remote areas.
About The Jungle School
A People in Crisis … A Young Woman’s Adventure … A School for Life . . .
The Orang Rimba (People of the Forest) are nomadic tribes who live in the rainforests of Sumatra, Indonesia. They hunt, fish, and gather food from their natural surroundings in much the same way they have for hundreds of years. Over the past two decades, the outside world has arrived at their doorstep. From illegal loggers chain‐sawing the jungle to transmigrants working in ever‐increasing numbers of palm oil plantations, the Orang Terang (People of the Outside Light) are encroaching upon the rainforest the Orang Rimba call home. While they have the skills needed to preserve their jungle, the Orang Rimba are ill prepared to deal with land contracts or sale of rainforest products. What can be done to help them?
Butet Manurung shares the journal she kept during her first year in the jungle. She tells of her adventures with stinging bees and prowling bears, with biting ants and motorbikes. Most touchingly, she describes how her relationship with the Orang Rimba develops as she transforms from an outsider to a trusted teacher within the community. Her trials and errors are familiar to anyone who has ever been a teacher, even though her students often wear loincloths and leave class to check their animal traps. Will learning to read and write be enough to help the Orang Rimba to save their rainforest?
Butet tells the story of her journey from anthropologist to educator to activist. She explains how and why she founded SOKOLA to bring literacy to indigenous people in areas too remote to access education. The work of this foundation and its adventurous volunteers is an excellent example of how a small number of individuals can effect change.
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