Amidst narrow alleyways in the East Lombok area of Banjar Kemuning, Siti Salbiah (53) was waiting for her customers to come and buy things from her small shop. Previously, she had a better life, but after her husband passed away due to malaria in 2007, Siti had to work hard to support her family with five children. The pension from her late husband is hardly enough for them all.
“The money we get from the shop is Rp200 thousand each month. We have to make do with that to live by,” she said recently.
Despite the hardship, Siti is trying her best so that her children can have good education. She always remembers her husband wanting to prioritise on the education of their children. It is not easy for Siti to raise all her children by herself. But, seeing the spirit for study among the children makes her strong, surviving the hardship. Two of the eldest children finally graduated from college. Her third daughter, Emutya Amalia Qurani, is now studying at UGM while two youngest children, who are twins, are still in primary schools.
“I was so thankful my prayers had been answered. I was really proud my child can study at a famous university like UGM,” she said.
Emutya Amalia Qurani is now a new student of Computer Sciences at Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. She was admitted at UGM without the need to sit in an entrance test and get the Bidik Misi scholarship, a programme for outstanding students from underpriviledged families.
“It felt great, finally I was accepted at UGM,” said Emutya Amalia Qurani, or Rani.
Rani said she never complained of her limited situation. She has always tried to make her mother happy by studying hard and making good achievements. And she always came out among the big five while in school. Now getting accepted at UGM is a blessing for Rani, especially that she does not have to pay for tuitions. Through the Bidik Misi scholarship, for the next 8 semesters she can study well without worrying about paying the tuition.
“I hope I can finish my study well and be successfull and make my family proud and happy,” she said.