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Cultivating The Love of Nusantara’s Batik: KKN Program of UNSOED Students in Malaysia

[, Sen, 29/01/24] Four students from Jenderal Soedirman University (UNSOED) are currently carrying out an International Community Service Program or Kuliah Kerja Nyata (KKN) in Chubadak Hilir Village, Pasar Sentul, Malaysia. Benino Ariel Priyananda from the Faculty of Agriculture, Muhammad Faris from the Faculty of Animal Husbandry, as well as Hana Maliha and Nadia Febriana from the Faculty of Economics and Business will be dedicated to this location for almost a month. The focus of their activities is teaching of migrant workers at Sanggar Belajar (SB) Sentul as an integral part of the International KKN program launched by the Unsoed Institute for Research and Community Service or Lembaga Penelitian dan Pengabdian kepada Masyarakat (LPPM) Unsoed.

In implementing this program, Unsoed students do not only limit themselves on teaching reading and writing and general knowledge, but also try to introduce Indonesian culture. On Wednesday (24/1), the children of migrant workers were invited to get to know various Nusantara’s batik patterns. The Unsoed students enthusiastically shared knowledge about Indonesian batik patterns, including patterns of Mega Mendung, Kawung, Simbut, and Gonggong Beruntun.

Batik, recognized by UNESCO as Indonesia’s cultural heritage in 2009, has become a symbol of national identity. The Unsoed students enthusiastically shared their knowledge of batik to 1st, 2nd, and 4th grade students. Not only does this activity contribute to improve their understanding of their homeland cultural treasures, but also becomes an effort to preserve Indonesian culture through creative and educational approach.

 The activity started at 09.00 local time after the implementation of dhuha prayer. The Unsoed students explained the origin and meaning of each batik pattern introduced to the children. They also invited them to color the patterns in order to encourage their creativity and interaction between them. Although not all learners have colored pencils, the cooperative spirit can be seen when some of them lend equipment to each other.

“The presence of Unsoed students in the Guidance Studio is a concrete manifestation of efforts to equalize for children of migrant workers. These children, who have so far had difficulty accessing formal education due to the status of their parents, have benefited positively from the presence of the students," said Ahmad Sabiq, Field Supervisor for SB Sentul KKN location.. Besides acting as teachers, they also actively provide an understanding of Indonesian culture, create valuable moments, and support the preservation of Indonesian culture in the international world.

Not only does the introduction of the Nusantara’s batik patterns through International KKN cultivate a love of culture in students, all of whom have never visited their homeland, but also it aims to make them actors in preserving and developing traditional arts. Therefore, this effort not only provides educational benefits but also strengthens the sustainability of a rich and valuable culture for future generations.