We welcome the first community in Indonesia to join Dividis! It’s all about training, empowering local communities and paying your school fees with coconuts.
Yesterday was a benchmark day for Dividis as the first community in Indonesia joined its free social media platform. The new adherents are the Venus One Tourism Academy, a professional college for hospitality industry training in Tegallalang in the center of Bali. Like Dividis, the Academy has a strong social and environmental creed and its main focus is training members of the local villages to give them new employment opportunities outside of the usual agricultural careers, most common in this area. Hospitality jobs also present the chance to work abroad, travel and widen one’s horizons which is not often a possibility when you come from a tiny farming village. Because a portion of the local community members have limited funds, the school has put in place funding support systems for the most underprivileged.
The Academy prides itself on its 4 pillars, personal development for the students, community development for the local area, business development and access to new tools like digital marketing and, finally, international development. Indeed, incredibly, the college will front the money for costs of travel abroad when a student is hired in another country -which is encouraged and supported- and the alumni then pays back Venus One out of their future wages. When the Dividis team met with him yesterday, the Training college’s director, (see full interview here), went on to explain the special measures the establishment has taken to help students during the co-vid 19 pandemic. Indeed, the dynamic Pak Wayan Pasek Adi Putra described how, though the pandemic presents many challenges, he sees it as a chance to bounce back and think outside the box, an important philosophy which he communicates to the young men and women under his care.
Venus One Tourism Academy has brought in a new tuition fees payment system since the pandemic started in March 2020, whereby the pupils can pay with coconuts, Ginger, Moringa leaf and Centella Asiatica leaf. The natural produce is transformed into tea and virgin coconut oil as well as other useable products and then sold by the school or by the students, as resellers, providing them with a small income. The beautifully packaged herbal teas, candied red ginger, face masks and other merchandise can be sold on markets or to local businesses.
In parallel, Venus One has been encouraging present and past students to be active at home and get their families on board to plant new promising crops, in particular the root vegetable, porang (read article) also known as amorphophallus muelleri blume which has high economic value because it is very good for your health, low in carbs and gluten free. It is cultivated organically and could be used instead of rice at times. It also has high strategic value since it offers a good opportunity for export, in particular to Japan. If each family puts 5000m2 towards this high monetary value crop , the village could produce 25 hectares worth of the precious porang, bringing in substantial income. Although it has presented opportunities thanks to the director’s creative approach, the Virus has none the less strongly impacted the running of the school, with class sizes being reduced and a strict safety protocol put in place. Because most of the courses are practical and hands on, the Home-Based Learning system has been hard to implement for many of the curriculums.
The college, like most educational facilities, are waiting with impatience for normality to return and the students to come back to study on site. The College put a stress on the students being aware and proficient in digital marketing and the new Dividis application will add new opportunities for the future hotel managers, chefs, massage therapists and cruise ship staff to hone their skills and be active in promoting their training facility and success stories on their own branded platform space. The application will also generate money for the school to help it help its pupils. For the moment , the college mostly supports the training of young people in the direct area but the director hopes to grow and accommodate students from all over Bali and maybe inspire others to put in place similar systems. Dividis is proud to play a part in the growth of this exciting and different establishment.