MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, SURABAYA – The Muhammadiyah Regional Board (PWM) of East Java and the Indonesian Consulate General in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on October 23, 2023, to provide repatriation scholarships for Indonesian migrant workers’ children.
The repatriation scholarships are addressed to Indonesian citizens studying and working abroad who want to return home.
Sigit Suryantoro Widiyanto, the Indonesian Consul General in Johor Bahru, said that the partnership aims to protect the children of migrant workers in Malaysia. He mentioned that children of migrant workers born in Malaysia generally do not have access to formal education except through learning centers or particular institutions such as the Indonesian School in Johor Bahru (SIJB).
“Through this scholarship program, the children can continue their secondary education in Muhammadiyah schools in East Java. After graduating, they will also be prioritized for scholarships to universities in Muhammadiyah universities in East Java,” said Sigit in the MOU signing in the Mas Mansyur Hall of the PWM East Java in Surabaya, witnessed by the East Java Provincial Education Office, the Chairman of the Muhammadiyah Council for Higher Education, Research and Development of the PWM East Java, and representatives of Muhammadiyah schools.
Sigit said that for the 2022/2023 school year, fourteen children of migrant workers who attended SIJB received scholarships from the PWM East Java, three children received scholarships from the Afirmasi Pendidikan Menengah (ADEM) program, one student was self-funded to continue their education in Semarang, and five students were not allowed by their parents to return to Indonesia.
Sukadiono, the Chairman of the PWM East Java, said that the partnership is an implementation of the Muhammadiyah mission to collaborate in goodness and righteousness. The scholarships may extend to the university level.
Wulan Diana, one of the scholarship recipients at SMA Muhammadiyah Sidoarjo, said she was worried about the cultural differences when she first started school in Indonesia. However, after three months of studying there, she now enjoys living and studying in Indonesia. She hopes to successfully accomplish her education and bring her parents back to Indonesia.