ACTNews, REYHANLI, COX’S BAZAR, MBALE – Spirit of festivities echoes in many Indonesian cities, as people are celebrating Indonesian Independence Day today (8/17). More than Indonesia, festivities also come from countries impacted by humanitarian crisis, such as Syria, Uganda, and Bangladesh that accommodate thousands of Rohingya refugees.
Syrian children just celebrated our Independence Day right behind a hill that borders Turkey and Syria. On the windswept terrain, they ran cheerily from one spot to another, waving Indonesian flag.
These 135 children are refugees who stay at an orphanage in Reyhanli, Turkey. They are originating from Idlib and Homs, two cities torn by war. But for once, they shrieked in joy, as if they didn’t want to miss Indonesian Independence Day momentum.
Khayrul Haq, Aksi Cepat Tanggap (ACT) volunteer from Indonesia who was in Reyhanli at the moment, revealed how the celebration felt special. Indonesian flag wasn’t unfamiliar to them, for they had seen the flag multiple times at humanitarian aid distribution events.
“I hope that kindness will always flow from us to Syrian people. Remember, we are a free nation, a grand nation that values humanity. Let’s take part in supporting our Syrian brothers and sisters. We pray for them, we help them hand in hand. That way, we are preparing ourselves to be a country that benefits other countries,” said Haq emotionally.
In the midst of sentimentality, Khayrul Haq felt small feet bolted through. Small kids cheered, “Happy Independence Day for Indonesia! May you stay free, I love Indonesia!”
Not only Syrians, Rohingya refugees also took part in the celebration. Rohingya children at Kutupalong Camp, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, loudly and merrily exclaimed, “Happy Independence Day, Indonesia!” Their mouth curved into wide smiles, and they beamed in gratitude for Indonesia’s care that embraced them.
From another corner of the world, Uganda also celebrated Indonesian Independence Day. They chanted gratitude on Indonesia’s 73th birthday. Additionally, they also expressed their gratitude for Water Well Waqf they just received. Now, they won’t need to worry about clean water stock for their daily needs.
Once again, Indonesia stole a special place in their heart. With humanitarian aids that Indonesia have given them through ACT, Indonesian people have become important part of these countries, ravaged by humanitarian crisis.
Thousand kilometers away from Indonesia, independence is celebrated. Sincere prayers from these refugees keep flowing. Prayers that, one day, they can also achieve independence that they’ve been yearning for.