I was raised in a multicultural, multifaith and even in multisocial-class family. These things makes me respect differences.
I believe that if we are more open-minded and can accept differences as a blessing in life, racism and discrimination won’t exist.
In my perspective, differences make our life dynamic. I always curious to know and want to learn more about other new things. I think these backgrounds made me interested to be a culture and tourism ambassador in my country, especially my province North Sumatra. I believe that culture exchange as well as information exchange will help to promote mutual understanding between people and nations.
Culture and tourism are the industries that will contribute a lot for the development of social welfare because of its multiplier effect. Indonesia is promoting it’s tourism and culture industry so that the world knows Indonesia as a whole, not only Bali. Nowadays youth in my country are far from sufficient regarding knowledge and sense of belonging to our own cultures and heritages. In fact, as a part of society we need to know our own roots and culture well.
In order to be a part of these campaigns, I’m actively involved in local culture and tourism association. We start doing small steps like learning traditional dances and trying to promote them by performing them. Mostly we wear our traditional costume that most youth tend to avoid and even have no idea about its existance. We simply hope that this could inspire other youth to have the same awareness to be proud of their own culture and heritage.
I do believe that identity is important and that we have sufficient knowledge about our own strengths and weaknesses. Once we know ourselves better and can respect our backgrounds, it is easier for us to respect others. We still have a long way to go but every little step is meaningful.