Serang, Indonesia


Photographer: Putu Sayoga

Year of Submission: 2016 (Educators Edition)

The sun has yet to rise, but Ridwan Sururi is already up and looking after his horses in his home village of Serang at the foot of Slamet volcano in central Java, Indonesia. Soon he will start his main task for the day: using one of his horses to carry a small mobile library to nearby schools. The idea for Ridwan’s “Kudapustaka” (horse library) first came up in a chat with a friend, Nirwan Arsuka, a fellow horse lover from Jakarta who helped launch the project with a gift of 136 children’s books. Since then, with more and more people hearing of the library through social media and local and international press coverage, book donations have grown into the thousands. Today, Ridwan is heading to Serang’s Elementary School No. 5. At nine o’clock, when the bell rings for the morning’s first break, children will run from their classrooms to return the books they have read and borrow new ones.


Medan, Indonesia


Photographer: Sutanta Aditya

Year of Submission: 2016 (Educators Edition) 

In a tiny, open-air classroom beside a railway track in the city of Medan in Indonesia’s North Sumatra province, Dosri Bakkara teaches poor children. “My students haven’t been lucky with their lives, so I have to find ways to help them,” says Dosri. Born in the nearby town of Sidikalang in 1979, Dosri knew she wanted to be a teacher even before she graduated with a degree in social studies from North Sumatra University. She started her school in 2007 using US$225 she received in severance pay after working at a non-governmental organisation and funds from her parents. Helped by volunteers, her pupils study reading, maths, ethics, spiritual guidance and other subjects. The school has no government support; instead it is funded by donations from Dosri’s friends and former colleagues.