Students in Yogyakarta have collected 10,000 books as part of a series of events ahead of National Education Day, which falls on May 2.
“We will donate the books to members of the public who need them,” Purwoko Aji, head of Yogyakarta students’ festival, said on Sunday as quoted by Antara.
Any ordinary public members can contribute their books to the committee’s secretariat office on Jl. Suhartono II in Kotabaru district until the end of May, when the committee will start donating the books, he said.
Aside from book collecting, the committee also hosted a number of contests, like poetry compositions, short film making and writing short stories, and held seminars.
In response to the festival, Yogyakarta Education Agency head Edy Heri Suasana said it was a way of showing appreciation for creative values.
“Yogyakarta needs students who are creative, smart and innovative,” Edy said.
“It’s a multicultural city. Diversity is one our main characteristics. Let’s hope that this diversity can grow harmoniously.”
Indonesia’s annual National Education Day is commemorated on the birthday of Ki Hadjar Dewantara, a national hero who is considered the father of the nation’s education system.
Born into a wealthy Indonesian family during the era of Dutch colonialism, Dewantara was known for speaking out against Dutch education policy, which only allowed for those who were either Dutch-born or very wealthy to have access to education.
His sustained criticism led to his exile, and he established an institute for education in Indonesia upon returning home.
He was appointed as an education minister after the country’s independence.