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My First Weeks as EBPP new School Counsellor

By: Gesang Arif Widodo/ EBPP Counsellor teacher

Hello! My name is Gesang Arif Widodo, and I am thrilled to introduce myself as the new School Counsellor in EBPP. I am deeply honoured to join this school community and look forward to working with all the staff to support the well-being and success of our students.

Arriving in this remote area called Desa Ban, in Karangasem Bali, where there are poor road condition and accessible water sources, my initial impression was a mixture of amazement and concern. My first plan was to immerse myself in the community, gaining a deep understanding of their way of life, values, and challenges. Building trust was paramount, as the residents were understandably cautious of outsiders. I began by participating in local activities and offering my help wherever needed. This allowed me to connect with both the students and their families, creating a foundation for meaningful relationships.

In terms of addressing the unique educational challenges, I had to get creative. The absence of roads meant that the school lacked essential resources, so I initiated a partnership with neighbouring communities to share educational materials and expertise. I also focused on developing an individualized counselling approach for each student, considering their remote lifestyle and the psychological impact of isolation. Encouraging community-based learning and life skills became an essential part of the curriculum.

Despite the challenges, I hope the students grow in confidence, improving academic achievement, and the community embracing the idea that education could be a powerful force for positive change even in the most remote areas. As a school counsellor, I am not just supporting academic progress but also nurturing the resilience, hope, and unity of this remarkable community.

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