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A substantial impact in a short time

Karunia's successes

In 2001, Karunia started teacher training in the Papuan highlands. In 2004, we bought a plot of empty swampy land outside Wamena and built a campus. Students and faculty members moved in forming a warm family community with a strong motivation to improve education in troubled Papua. With success! So many beautiful and strong people who can play a significant role because of our groundbreaking method that fights poverty from within.

Our history

1. The campus

Karunia’s campus is located 6 kilometers from Wamena, situated in the Baliem Valley in the highlands of Papua in an idyllic and strategic spot along a main road, removed from the hustle and bustle of the city, yet easily accessible. The 12 hectares of land were purchased with a view to future development.

Over the years, the campus has grown into a small village with over a hundred residents. You will find boys’ and girls’ dormitories, housing for teachers, classrooms and a main building with space for larger meetings. Parts of the land are used for growing vegetables or serve as sports fields.

2. Character Building

In Papua, children normally grow up in the honai (wooden hut). After completing primary and secondary education, they have gained very little knowledge. They have a lot of freedom with little supervision by their families which often means they turn into young people without purpose and direction. They are not used to studying hard and quickly drop out when discipline is demanded.

Karunia’s teacher training college educates students to become motivated teachers, providing a warm family atmosphere but also a firm hand. The education is based on biblical values and pays attention to both learning and life. The students learn to recognize that good education is important for the development of their area.

3. Community

The atmosphere in the highlands of Papua can be tense. All sorts of factors contribute to this: a history of oppression, low self-esteem, tribal wars, ignorance, broken families, alcohol and corruption. Young people have learned to survive.

Within the walls of the college, however, a different culture prevails. It is a community of ‘grace & growth’, based on biblical values and standards. The focus is on loyalty, integrity, self-sacrifice, truthfulness and charity. It is a way of life in which you are held accountable because you are responsible for each other. This atmosphere can be clearly felt by anyone on campus.

4. Good Education

Education in Papua is usually characterized by duduk, dengar, diam (the 3Ds), meaning Sit Down, Listen, Be Quiet. If the child passively undergoes the teacher’s monologue, the lesson is deemed successful. This approach does not allow children’s capabilities and creativity to flourish. The result is that children think they are stupid and believe they can achieve very little.

YKW focuses on interactive education with the student at its heart. Students are introduced to this method right from year one. With continuous practice, internships, observations, coaching and feedback, this method of teaching eventually becomes ingrained in the student. They start seeing children as valuable and adopt a willingness to help children develop their potential. This shows in their teaching practice.

Karunia's Dreams

Changing the educational culture in the region

A university with life-changing impact

Embedding Christian values in young people

Introducing Teach the Teacher in other countries

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