On November 7, 2009, the Indonesian Community of CT and the surrounding areas gathered at Luce Hall at Yale University for an evening of Indonesian food, dance, songs, and celebration. The evening began with a sumptuous variety of Indonesian style foods from different regions around the country. The festivites then moved downstairs into the auditorium, where there was a standing-room-only crowd.
The evening's performances began with Welcoming Remarks from the hosts and sponsors, including Pak Indriyo Sukmono, Senior Lector, and Pak Joe Errington, Chair, both from the Council of Southeast Asia Studies. Several members of the Consulate General of Indonesia in New York (KJRI) were also in attendance, including ConGen Ibu Trie Edi Mulyani. The ConGen gave an eloquent welcome, with many thanks to Pak Indriyo, Pak Joe, and the Southeast Asia Studies Council for hosting the wonderful affair and bringing the Indonesian community and friends together. She also spoke about Indonesia, the land of diversity, with more than 300 living languages and over 17,500 islands. Indonesia is a land unified in diversity, as is the country motto, with everyone speakingn a common language of Bahasa Indonesia. It is also the world's largest democracy and home to the world's largest Muslim population.
The evening continued with songs and dances, and some video presentations from members of the community. Many of the performers were students and young children, who displayed the beauty of their culture with grace and enthusiasm. Students from Yale and Wesleyan Universities were among the participants, and at the end of the program the audience was invited up on stage for a final dance all together.
One of the presentations during the evening also highlighted the recent earthquake in Padang and the Relief Efforts which are ongoing in the region. All in attendance were encouraged to participate in the relief efforts. The International Silat Federation of Indonesia & America and ISFA at Yale are teaming up with RRAD, the Risk Reduction, Adaptation, and Disaster Student Interest Group at the Yale Forestry School, to bring awareness about the disaster and the continuing after-effects, and to encourage participation. In two weeks, on November 17, 18, and 19, a Disaster Relief Cafe will be held at Kroon Hall at the School of Forestry to raise donations. For more information, please click here. The presentation ended with a slideshow presentation highlighting the beautiful people, places, and culture of West Sumatra, along with a moment of silence and prayers to return the region to a better state than previous.
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