Jakarta, March 23, 2011 – A special program to support the most marginalized people in Indonesia was officially launched by the Coordinating Minister for People’s Welfare, Agung Laksono, on March 23 at Galeri Nasional, Jakarta. The program, named PNPM Peduli (Peduli = care) is part of the National Program for Community Empowerment (PNPM), a community-driven development program to alleviate poverty initiated by the Government of Indonesia.
“PNPM Peduli will try to empower those who are ignored and less heard by restoring their dignity and confidence, providing them with skills and access to basic services, also facilitating access to justice,” said the Minister in his opening remarks. These people include street children, people with HIV and AIDS, indigenous communities, scavengers, people with disabilities, victims of human trafficking, victims of domestic or community abuse, youth in conflict with the law, landless farmers, sex workers, transgender, and many others.
Existing Government programs which have a community-based approach play an important role in poverty reduction, but are not specifically designed to reach the most marginalized population. This is the gap PNPM Peduli aims to fill.
According to the Central Bureau of Statistics, in 2010 the number of poor people reached 31 million accounting for 13% of the Indonesian population. The Government has set a target to decrease the poverty rate to 8-10% by 2014. “It means, we need strong efforts to reduce the poverty rate as much as 1% in average per year,” said Agung Laksono. He added that poverty alleviation should not only focus on economic issues but incorporate a multidimensional approach that include fulfilment of basic human rights, including for marginalized population.
Between 2011 to 2012, PNPM Peduli will implement its first phase. It is expected that more than 40,000 marginalized people across 23 provinces will benefit from the program. It will then be expanded to reach more marginalized people in more provinces during its second phase in 2013-2014. Implementation will be undertaken through a collaboration between Civil Society Organizations (CSO) and a nationwide organization with local branches serving as executing organizations (EO). The three EOs selected through a rigorous process that will implement the first phase of PNPM Peduli are: Kemitraan, Association for Community Empowerment, and Lakpesdam-NU.
Agung Laksono emphasized the important role of CSOs for the success of PNPM Peduli. “CSOs have a comparative advantage to reach the most marginalized and have the flexibility to innovate and test new approaches for poverty reduction,” he said. PNPM Peduli will also foster collaboration between the Government and CSOs in poverty reduction efforts. Lessons from this innovative approach will be transferred to other Government programs to empower those who are most marginalized effectively.
Mark Hagerstrom, Indonesia Country Program Coordinator of the World Bank, explained that PNPM Peduli recognizes that different types of marginalized groups face different barriers to access services, economic opportunities, justice or political space. PNPM Peduli therefore seeks to partner with CSOs at the local level who understand the needs of specific marginalized groups and implement approaches that are specifically tailored to address those needs.
Grants for the program will be channeled through the PNPM Support Facility, supported by contributions from the Governments of Australia, Denmark, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union, and is managed by the World Bank.
The launch of PNPM Peduli concluded with a bird-releasing ceremony attended by the Minister together with representatives from CSOs and local NGOs who will work with the beneficiaries. It symbolized being released from poverty and the importance of efforts to alleviate poverty through a partnership between the government, community-based organizations and the people themselves.