Hengki Sulendorong

Maintenance man and role model: Hengki’s story

This is Hengki Sulendorong (26). He was born and raised on Raja Ampat, a tropical archipelago known as one of the most beautiful parts of this earth. Because of family, he ended up in Wamena and eventually at Karunia’s teacher training college (STKIP). He graduated in 2021. Hengki knows his way around and is a real role model for younger students. He lives and works on campus as a maintenance man and also teaches two days at a local school. “I am very grateful that I was able to study in this place and that I can now work and serve here. During my studies, I have learned a lot. I feel proud and am grateful to God that I get to be here and now can help new students from my own experience.”

Hengki says he is mostly grateful to the school for challenging him to think about the purpose of his life. “Especially the people who have been a mentor to me have helped me with this. They were there for me when I was struggling and encouraged me to grow in my faith.” He says he struggled for quite a long time to find his destiny in life. “But during my studies I was able to see that God is really at work in this place and in this community.” Especially the fact that the boarding school is not about knowledge and skills – but about the formation of himself – has made a deep impression on him.

Hengki also experienced teaching during his internships as very special. “I did my internship at two small schools in the city. Here, serving God and the interest of the students was really the focus.” Hengki indicates that this is unfortunately not the case at many schools outside the city, as teachers rarely show up there. “I did my final internship at Tiranus, one of those two schools. Right now, I also get to teach there a few days a week.” He never expected this, having been raised in a very different region of Papua himself. Moreover, unlike most schools in Papua, this school focuses not on making a career or money, but on discipleship. Street children are lovingly cared for, educated and taught here. “God has helped me adapt to this beautiful mission,” he says. The fact that he gets to work at STKIP in addition makes him very proud. “My hope is that this school may become better and better known in society. Not only interior, but also at the coast and on the islands of Raja Ampat, where I myself come from. Because I know that there too are children who are very eager to learn in the way STKIP advocates.”

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