Internship for Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao of the Philippines Youth Muslim Leaders -Islam and Family Planning in Lombok Island-
Tuesday, 18 October 2016 02:32

The Government of Indonesia in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund –well known as UNFPA- held the Internship for Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) of the Philippines Youth Muslim Leaders, from 9 to 15 October 2016 in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara. This program is part of South-South and Triangular Cooperation program implemented under the Mou between National Population and Family Planning Board of Indonesia –or BKKBN- with Population Commission of the Philippines –well known as PopCom, signed on 26 September 2013.


As the pilot program which focused on youth Muslim leaders, the participants of the program comprised of (mostly) Mindanao youth Muslim leaders, officials from ARMM of the Philippines Department of Education, Mindanao senior Muslim leaders, and representative from PopCom. Initially, there were 17 participants selected. However, only 16 of them came to join the program, as seen on the table below:





Ms. Susana B. Codotco

Chief – IMCD, POPCOM – Central Office

Mr. Israel Sarip Mundas

Youth Leader, Upi, Maguindanao

Ms. Sittie Hajar Basria Lumanggal

Youth Leader, Upi, Maguindanao

Ms. Omilkhair T. Ampuan

Youth Leader, Lanao del Sur

Ms. Anisah Ibrahim

Youth Leader, Lanao del Sur

Ms. Maradiya Tantung Hayal

Youth Leader, Tawi-Tawi  ARMM

Ms. Hafsa T. Arab

Member, Bangsamoro Leadership and Management Institute (BLMI)

Ms. Raizah D. Ortuoste

NDP Assistant Coordinator for AHYD, Department of Health

Dr. Tato M. Usman

Secretary for English, Dar Al-Ifta Bangsamoro

Ms. Sheryl M. Silva

AHYD Focal, POPCOM Regional Office – ARMM

Ms. Farida  Panda

Admin. Officer, Department of Education – ARMM

Mr. Rudimar Sahibad Sabtula

AHYD Focal, Sulu ARMM

Mr. Abdulsalam Alabat

Moslem Religious Leader

Ustadz Maher Malaguial

Moslem Religious Leader, Cotabato City

Ms. Ahalul Saida Sattar

AHD Focal, Department of Education – ARMM

Ms. Ahalul Nur-Ina Sattar

AHD Focal, Department of Education – ARMM


The opening ceremony program was held at Aston Inn Mataram Hotel on 10 October 2016, began with the national anthems of the two respective countries, Indonesia and the Philippines. The first welcome remarks delivered by Mrs. Martha Santoso on behalf of UNFPA Indonesia. She emphasized the importance of investing teenage girls especially in education and health, including adolescent reproductive health that can save their future, save their families, societies and their nations. Indonesia is a country with majority of Muslim population and Islamic teachings play important role in the life of Indonesian society. She expected this internship program would be mutually benefiting for both Indonesia and the Philippines where the participants can learn knowledge and skills regarding the family planning in Indonesia and Indonesia also can get some inputs and feedbacks from the participants.


Mrs. Rika Kiswardani from the Ministry of State Secretariat as the national focal point of the program, in her remarks, stated that the program was part of Indonesia’s commitment to improve Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries which implemented under South-South and Triangular Cooperation. Compare to other SSTC trainings which had been implemented so far, this internship was more unique because it was a tailor-made program based on request from the Philippines side. It was highly expected that the participants would have comprehensive understanding on the role of Muslim Religious Leaders and Faith Based Organization in family planning and also learn about the linkage of Islamic Core Value in Indonesia’s family planning policy.


The Internship program was officially opened by Dr. Sanjoyo, the Deputy of Training, Research and Development of BKKBN. Before that, he highlighted that the internship designed by adapting the global training on Developing Strategic Partnership with Moslem Religious Leaders in Family Planning. Indonesia had a unique approach in family planning program which stressing on the effort to improve family welfare through regulation of children. The perspective of the family should be changed toward qualified smaller families in the entry point of the family planning program. To achieve these goals, BKKBN had been involving not only related government institutions but also development agencies and civil society for effective and necessary change with wider community support. The support and endorsement of Muslim Religious Leaders to new idea of family planning had helped Indonesia Muslim community to accept and adopt the new approaches of family planning. As the result, many Muslim Religious Leaders were actively involved in BKKBN advocacy program by campaigning and supporting some form of family planning services among Indonesia Muslim Community. Through this internship, it was expected that the program will be benefited the participants and they will gain knowledge, skills and lesson-learned that could further accelerate the progress of family planning program in the Philippines.


As for the rest of the day after the opening ceremony, the participants attended in-class theory on several main topics such as Indonesia family planning program, adolescent reproductive health program in Indonesia, and reproductive health education program in West Nusa Tenggara province. In between the sessions, the participants had a chance to get to know the national committee and the facilitator on ice breaking/introduction session.


The study visits conducted from 11 to 13 October 2016 to public high school in Praya Region (SMAN 4 Praya), Islamic Boarding School in Kediri Region (Pondok Pesantren Nurul Hakim), Public Health Center Gunung Sari (Puskesmas), Radio Hotline Service in Lingsar Village, Islamic Boarding School in Tanah Beak Narmada (Pondok Pesantren Daarul Hikmah), and PKBI (Perkumpulan Keluarga Berencana Indonesia) Youth Centre in Mataram. During the visits, the participants observed a teaching-learning process on reproductive health, counseling activity, and services provided by the related stakeholders. On those occasions, the participants also had fruitful discussions with the teachers-students, Ulamas, Puskesmas staffs, officials and youth representatives from Lingsar Village, as well as staffs/volunteers at PKBI youth centre.


Friday, 14 October 2016 was the last day of the program. The participants had the opportunity to present action plan before the closing ceremony. The presentation was delivered by Ms. Maradiya Tantung Hayal, a youth leader from Tawi-Tawi district and Ms. Sittie Hajar Basria Lumanggal, a youth leader from Upi Maguindanao district. The action plan comprised of several activities. Based on the activities proposed on the action plan, we may assume that the participants put on high expectation and would give their best effort to implement it. However, there is also an issue: the limited budget to finance the activities. Therefore, the facilitators gave the participants input that they should make priority in terms of implementing the activities. Representative from PopCom, Ms. Susanna B Codotco gave an enlighten statement that PopCom might be able to finance several activities as mentioned in the action plan.

After the presentation of action plan, while conducting the evaluation session, the representative from the Ministry of State Secretariat, Ms. Yane Widayanti gave her general impression concerning this program. She said that it was such a great pleasure to have the participants in Lombok. She was also very glad that the program could be conducted. She recalled that she was joining the discussion to design this program at the Technical Meeting on South-South Cooperation between Indonesia and the Philippines held in Manila on 15 to 16 March 2016. As it was a pilot program between Indonesia and the Philippines which focused on Youth Muslim Leaders, she expected that this program might be continued annually in order to give wider opportunity to other youth leaders from Mindanao, off course after monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the action plan made by the first group. She hoped that the participants enjoyed their stay in Lombok and while learning from Indonesia, the participants might be able to experience Indonesian culture and culinary.  She also highlighted that inputs and comments from participants were very important for the committee, as it would become the recommendation in order to improve the next batch program. Therefore, she encouraged the participants for being honest in terms of filling-in the evaluation form based on their experience during joining the program.

The closing ceremony was begun by the testimony on behalf of the participants, delivered by Mr. Israel Sarip Mundas, a youth leader from Upi Maguindanao district. He was very impressed that the government and civil society in Indonesia were hand-in-hand to run the program in order to protect the young generation from bad influence. He also found out that the awareness of family planning and reproductive health were introduced to the youth ever since they were in their young age. He learned a lot from this program, and hope that the action plan made by the group could be well-implemented, therefore he asked a fully support- in terms of fund and other support- from PopCom and other related institutions in the Philippines to make it happen.

Mr. Samidjo from UNFPA Indonesia stated that UNFPA might always support the South-South Cooperation Program between Indonesia and the Philippines. UNFPA would always keep an eye to monitor the progress of any programs organized under the framework of South-South Cooperation between Indonesia and the Philippines.

The program was officially closed by Mr. Muhktar Bakti, the Head of Centre for Training and International Collaboration of BKKBN. On his closing speech, he addressed his expectation that this program may benefit the two respective countries: Philippines and Indonesia. He stated that for the last 6 days of the program, the dynamic inter-actions between the participants and resources persons or among the trainees themselves experienced in the whole process of training were extremely needed to ensure that the participants would gain maximum benefits in term of knowledge improvement to be implemented when participants return to their home country. He hoped the experiences here would provide the participants to take lesson learned that they might think the best for the benefit of their country. Moreover, BKKBN would always be well-prepared to organize capacity building programs in family planning for other southern countries, as family planning was one of the flagship programs of Indonesia South-South and Triangular Cooperation.

As the participants returned to their home country, it did not mean that it was the end of the program. The action plan is waiting to be implemented and the stakeholders in the Philippines as well as in Indonesia are encouraged to monitor and evaluate the progress. It is highly expected that this kind of similar program could be implemented annually, as long as there are still high demand from the beneficiary side, since Indonesia as the provider has the requested capacity. One of the participants worked for Department of Health in Mindanao, Ms. Raizah D. Ortuoste said that she was very grateful to the Government of Indonesia for giving her and her fellow friends the opportunity to learn from Indonesia and come to Lombok Island to get to know well about the role of youth Muslim leaders in family planning. She would take best practices shared by Indonesia to her home country and try to adopt it and she also hoped that her government would give her (and the other participants) support to implement the action plan. So, we are looking forward to Raizah’s (and her friends) action afterwards.


Bureau for Technical Cooperation

State Secretariat of__

the Republic of Indonesia__

Jl. Veteran III No. 9__




Ph. +62-21-3846463__

Fax +62-21-3866579__

email: indonesia.sstc@setneg.go.id__