19 November, 2008

A Village Lack of Youngster

. 19 November, 2008

One of the things I have always concerned about every time I visit villages in Tapanuli Utara is its lack of youngster. Tapanuli Utara is located at the southern part of North Sumatera. Youngsters here are young adults. The scene seen are elderly or young children working at rice field, shepherding sheep and buffalo, or relaxing in the coffee shop. It seems that no youngster remains living in the village.

Most probably all youngsters has been moved to the city for education or earn money. In general, the people from Tapanuli Utara Bataknese strongly hold their principle of life that they must send their children/descendants to school. The awareness that education is the main road to a better future is so strong among Bataknese. To get their children educated is a pride and is of family main target. No matter how poor the family is, they will do anything to send their children to school. Their relatives usually help each other to support one’s family in making this possible. The support could be financial, material or providing facility. Parents would do anything, borrow money, sell their field, sell their property, work harder, etc. for sending their children to a good school. The success of a family is measured by the level of education the family can afford for their children. These matters encourage parents to send their children to get the good education in the big city. This mainly happens to the youth at the time they have to continue their study to a higher level or university. So, all youngsters of villagers will be sent to the big city to attend college or university. The problem is after completing their study at university, these graduated youngsters usually find a job in the city as well, to get well paid of course. Again, no youths will back to their village and settle their life there. Unless the local authority develops economic activities in a village - for the youth particularly, the village will remain lack of youngsters.

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