The collaboration between the Ambon City Education Office, Balai Guru Penggerak Maluku, and SEAMEO CECCEP, along with 7 SEAMEO CENTRE INDONESIA (SCI), was a crucial milestone in educational collaboration. This effort was formalized through the signing of a Cooperation Agreement held with high enthusiasm at the Manise Hotel on November 12, 2023. This agreement represented a shared commitment to advancing the early childhood care education and parenting sector by involving various aspects, including research, advocacy, and capacity building, as well as partnerships.
The signing of the cooperation agreement document was carried out by Prof. Vina Adriany, M.Ed., Ph.D., Director of SEAMEO CECCEP, Drs. Ferdinandus F. Taso, M.Si, Head of Ambon City Education Office, and Dr. La Mansur, S.Pd., M.Pd, as Head of Maluku Teacher Movement Center. Not only that, 7 SCI also participated in the signing, such as SEAMEO SEAMOLEC, SEAMEO BIOTROP, SEAMEO RECFON, SEAMEO QITEP In Language, QITEP In Mathematics, and QITEP In Science.
The main objective of this cooperation agreement was to mobilize synergy in the preparation of innovative programs in the field of early childhood education and family education. This included the development of learning models or innovations in early childhood education and parenting, the improvement of the competence of educators and education personnel, as well as the study and development of models/innovations in the field of early childhood education and parenting. Through community service, training, seminars, and joint networking, this cooperation was expected to achieve success with the principles of mutual benefit, accountability, and clear accountability. In addition to signing the cooperation agreement document, 7 SCI also conducted training for elementary and middle school teachers.
Furthermore, on November 13-14, 2023, SEAMEO CECCEP also conducted the Our Happy Neighborhood training for early childhood educators in Ambon. Teachers received material on the importance of children's rights. In this case, the material was included in the chapter on happy children. Children's rights are a set of universally recognized rights for children as individuals with their own needs and interests. The fulfillment of children's rights is an obligation recognized in various international agreements, such as the Convention on the Rights of the Child ratified by the United Nations (UN). Children's rights cover various aspects, including the right to life, the right to development, the right to be involved, and the right to be respected.
One of the most important rights of children is the right to participation, allowing children to speak, express their opinions, and participate in decisions that affect their lives. Participation rights empower children and create equality. Children become part of the decision-making process, promoting a fairer and more inclusive society. Participation rights ensure that children have a voice in issues that directly affect their lives and development, including in the context of education, health, and protection.
In the discussion, participants were actively involved in discussing issues related to street children, including defining the concept of play for street children. They showed high enthusiasm in formulating an understanding of fulfilling the rights of street children. Teachers also sincerely desired concrete steps and follow-ups after training, especially in dealing with cases involving street children.
Participants understood that street children, often considered individuals with negative connotations, actually had the potential to understand and learn about economic literacy. Additionally, street children could manage their time balancing between play, work, and school. This fact provided new insights into the positive potential possessed by street children.
Through this training, it was hoped that all teachers could implement an understanding of children's rights, both in the school environment and at home. Close collaboration with parents was also expected to be the key to ensuring the optimal fulfillment of the rights of street children. This increased understanding was expected to create an environment that supported the positive growth and development of street children, providing them with opportunities for holistic development.