International Students Communes with the Nature of Gunung Kidul

Culture Camp by BIPA UNY (Indonesian for Non-native Speakers) was recently held for two days, i.e. on 30 and 31 October 2015. Located in the Nglanggeran tourist village, Gunung Kidul, this Culture Camp aims to unite the entire 2015 international students. The international students come from several programs, namely Darmasiswa, Developing Countries Partnership, Credit Transfer of Yunnan University of Nationalities and the Guangdong University of Foreign Studies (GDUFS).

On the first day, participants were greeted by the performance of Gejug Lesung “Mugio Laras”, which players are the villagers residing in Nglanggeran. It was then followed with Batik workshop using masks as the media. "Look, I can make it neatly," as expressed by Nusree, one of the participants of the Culture Camp originated from Thailand.

The next agenda was conducting some races usually perfomed during Indonesian Indepence Day, namely cracker eating contest, tug of war, and water rope pule. Okita Hiroki from Japan enjoyed these outdoor activities the most. "I love when I was given the chance to play water rope pull and the tug of war," he said. After that, students were told how to farm and catch fish in the pond, not far from the race venue.

The second day of Culture Camp allowed students to track Nglanggeran mount while having some simple yet fun games to enliven the atmosphere. Then, the students were invited to get acquaintance with cocoa as well as the process of making dodol kakao and other snacks from cocoa.

Before the event ended, the participants were given a chance to use the flying fox, not far from the place of dodol making. "The game is cool, it doesn’t make me afraid," as said by Diana, one of the Committee of Culture Camp.

The Vice Rector IV of YSU, Prof. Suwarsih Madya, Ph.D. argued "The activities in Culture Camp aim to introduce local wisdom, especially in the Nglanggeran tourist village ". She also expressed her hope that the international student could adapt to the culture of the community there, and then they could tell their colleagues regarding their experiences in the village when they return to their country. (Wulan)