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Australian politicians travel across Timor Sea to see impact of Australian aid in Indonesia

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Australian Regional Leadership Initiative delegation visits one of Australia’s closest neighbours to better understand the development needs of the South East Asian nation.

A cross-parliamentary group of Australian Senators and Members has arrived in Indonesia and will spend five days visiting Australian-funded development programs to gain a greater understanding of the impact of Australian aid and deepen the connection between Australia and one of its closest regional neighbours.

Pat Conaghan MP, Nola Marino MP, Senator Bridget McKenzie, Senator David Shoebridge, Senator Marielle Smith and Josh Wilson MP are travelling to Indonesia’s main island, Java, as well as Lombok and Bali, to vi sit health, justice, education, and disaster recovery programs with a particular focus on climate change and gender equity.

The tour will allow parliamentarians to see first-hand the value of Australian overseas development assistance in providing support to children and their communities across the archipelago. The group will visit programs run by Save the Children, Oxfam, Fred Hollows Foundation, and other key organisations.

Save the Children Australia CEO Mat Tinkler said given Australia’s proximity to Indonesia, this trip is an opportunity for Australian politicians to engage with children and their communities directly.

“Australia’s aid program helps support vulnerable children and families, including in Indonesia, by working in partnership to strengthen education and healthcare systems, respond to disasters, address gender-based violence and prepare to face the challenges of climate change.”

“This tour will provide valuable insight into the ways in which international development organisations help meet the needs of children and their communities in countries like Indonesia. It will also connect parliamentarians directly with the programs and people that deliver this important assistance,” added Tinkler.

The Australian Regional Leadership Initiative is a Save the Children Australia project, made possible by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Since 2015, Save the Children has delivered 15 learning tours to countries including Papua New Guinea, Bangladesh, Jordan, Lebanon, Myanmar, Solomon Islands, Cambodia, Fiji, Kenya, and Solomon Islands.

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Menchie Khairuddin is a writer Deputy Content Manager at Akolade and content producer for Third Sector News. She is passionate about social affairs specifically in mixed, multicultural heritage and not-for-profit organisations.

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