On Saturday, September 8, 2018, Taman Baca Inovator (TBI) had the opportunity to collaborate with KOMPAK (Youth Community Against Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation of Children) in SD Negeri 02 elementary school, Pasir Sari, Cikarang. The KOMPAK team (Wisnu, Priska, Galuh, and Nafsau) presented the material about “Body Awareness” to grade 5 and 6 students to teach them how they can protect themselves from sexual violence threats.
A few minutes after the material was delivered, several students were seen gathered in front of the class and interacted with a young woman. At the first glance, the students seemed to relax and openly tell their stories, as if they were interacting with their own peers. There was no gap between them and the young woman. The woman’s name was Kak Priska, one of the speakers from KOMPAK who talked about body awareness. Despite what it looked like, the children were not just telling simple stories, they were telling Priska about their own experience where strangers tried to approach them and get acquainted with them, asked them to go somewhere together, and some other behaviors which might lead to or were indicative of sexual abuse.
The material was delivered in an interesting manner. In the beginning, the KOMPAK team presented slides of materials on what is sexual exploitation, what are the motives and how we could prevent such situation from happening and who to contact if it happens. Then, the students were given information about which body parts should not be touched by others – for example, the mouth, chest, and genitals. To help the students remember easily, songs about body parts that cannot be touched by others were taught. The students responded well and sang the song very enthusiastically. In the final session, a student was randomly asked to come to the front of the class to draw a complete body on a meta-plan paper attached to the board. After that, students were asked to mark any part of the body that cannot be touched by others.
“The activity was very exciting. The children were enthusiastic about the material presented. With this, in the future, the children will understand what parts of the body can be touched [by others]. Going forward, we hope to collaborate again with Taman Baca Inovator to make more students in other schools aware of this.” Kak Priska, one of the KOMPAK member who presented the material responded in a nutshell.
The event was not only attended by students. Bu Lilis, the homeroom teacher for the 6th grade was also at the classroom listening to the materials presented, as well as asked questions during the question and answer session.
This was the first time Taman Baca Inovator collaborated with KOMPAK Jakarta to disseminate body awareness to young students. Thanks to the awareness spread, the students were more open and for the first time, they were willing to share their experience on what could be initial motives for child sexual abuse. Stories that they even kept from their parents. The KOMPAK Jakarta team was an eye-opener that provided a medium for the children to share and tell their stories, as well as provided solutions and practical ways on what to do if similar things happen again. The children also became aware of initial actions that could lead to child sexual abuse.
Overall, the activity was very useful, considering that there is still very limited access to the information on the sexual abuse, especially ones related to young students. There is no specific material provided at school to arm the children and many still consider that elementary school children are too young to be given an understanding of sex.
Starting from SD Negeri 02 Pasir Sari, children’s awareness about sexual violence began to grow, and hopefully it would continue to spread to other schools. In the end, we hope it could be a small step that could save the Indonesian generation. Another step we can do in addition to the dissemination is growing children’s reading habit. By reading, children will get enough information about the dangers lurking at them in this era. Let’s work together to save the children and make them aware of sexual violence! (Upan Tamrin).