Forging Banjarmasin Entrepreneurial Spirit Through Creative Houses – ipadguides

“If you order Soto Banjar, you have to use ketupat,” said a waiter at Soto Banjar Bang Amat, one of the famous culinary places in Banjarmasin.

“If I just order soto, can you use rice, bro?” I asked curiously.

“You can, sir. But that would be Sop. Not Soto,” he said again.

I don’t know why that’s the case. Even though Soto and Sop turned out to be the same. But it gets a different name when you choose a different carb. A bowl of Soto Banjar contains vermicelli, sliced ​​duck eggs, free-range chicken meat, cakes, then doused in a very tasty broth. Moreover, accompanied by the breezy atmosphere of the Barito River beside this restaurant.

Soto or Sop Banjar?

Actually my destination is Balikpapan, but I stopped briefly in Banjarmasin to meet Mas Muhammad Aripin, a founder Creative and Smart Home Foundation who is currently nurturing street children to become creative entrepreneurs. He is the winner of the 2016 SATU Indonesia Awards from Astra in the field of entrepreneurship.

After not being able to finish a portion of Soto Banjar, because the portion was too much, I immediately directed the car to the Banjarmasin Pandang Tower. This four-story building on the edge of the Martapura River which has two towers on either side is very good for viewing Banjarmasin city activities from above. At first glance, I saw that the city of Banjarmasin was quite densely populated compared to other cities. However, its development is quite far behind other cities in Kalimantan, such as Balikpapan.

Here I met Mas Aripin. It turned out that he was holding training on making products with the participants being women from the Banjarmasin City Tourism Office. There are those who make Dayak hats, boat decorations, and various other items. Apart from currently guiding and nurturing 85 street children, it turns out that Mas Aripin also conducts training in various communities.

Product making training

“There are children who are former drug users, their families” broken home, or have committed a crime. Anyway, the children on the streets that we want to guide in this foundation, “explained Mas Aripin.

So these children are fully fostered by the Foundation, they are required to stay in school until S1. Of course at the cost of their own sweat, not from donations from other parties.

After he finished with the training with the women, Mas Aripin invited us to see the work of his students in the National Craft Council (Dekranas) building which is located just next to the Pandang Tower.

The Dekranas building is intended to collect and develop handicraft products whose business actors are micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs). The Creative and Smart Home Foundation is one of them. Apart from here, their products in the form of handicrafts are also sold at souvenir shops such as Kindaiku. Some clothes, jackets, and other art knick-knacks from MSME products can be seen here.

“When I went to Jakarta for the INACRAFT event, I stopped by Tanah Abang and bought a lot of these plain jackets. Then I gave it to the children to modify it with a sasirangan cloth. Be a new product,” concluded Aripin.

After that we rushed to the Class 2 Penitentiary (LAPAS) Banjarmasin to see Mas Aripin’s other activities. When I heard the word LAPAS, I shuddered in horror. I have never once been in an area of ​​iron bars where criminal prisoners are held. I felt a little scared, imagining what they would do to me.

Workshop in Prison

Aripin’s activities in prison are the same as the activities we met earlier in the Pandang Tower. The difference is the participants. The previous ones were women, this one is a prisoner.

“If the detainee who is wearing a blue shirt means that he has behaved well, some are allowed to be in the outside area,” explained Mas Aripin.

I tried to talk to a prisoner who was wearing a blue shirt. He appears to be working with a sewing machine. Sewing sandals wrapped in Sasirangan cloth motifs.

“This is for slippers only at home, very light and soft,” said Pak Hasan, explaining the product with a smile.

Pak Hasan, a productive prison resident

The Creative and Smart Home Foundation, apart from helping children, also helps prisons to train their citizens so that when their prison term is over, they can become entrepreneurs. They are trained to make products, market products, to manage finances.

It turns out that this prison is not as scary as I imagined. Until I saw prisoners in orange vests lined up neatly at the exit.

“This is a new prisoner, waiting for the court’s decision,” said a prison official who escorted me. I immediately rushed to find the exit.

After being relieved to be out of prison, I went to Aripin’s other ‘guided child’. This time it was housewives. There is a small nameplate at the gate of this village. Its name is ‘Post-Sasirangan Handycraft Village’. This village specializes in making all kinds of handicrafts based on the typical Banjar Sasirangan cloth. The workers here are housewives.

Mothers who were also fostered by the Creative & Smart House Foundation

“So there are several villages that are producers of these handicrafts. If anyone orderlater I can tell the coordinator of each village to make a number of orders, “explained Mas Aripin.

Seeing the daily life of Mas Aripin who persistently becomes a social entrepreneur, I see Indonesia in the future still has hope. There are still many good people who really want to advance their nation. Reaping the entrepreneurial spirit in dozens of abandoned children and thousands of other people in Banjarmasin is not easy, but over time this will improve the economic level of Banjarmasin which is still lagging behind other cities in Kalimantan.


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