Mufti Rasyid fell in love with filmmaking after completing courses on Media from the Parkland College in Champaign, Illinois, US, in 2011, under the Community College Initiative Program (CCIP), which is run by AMINEF.
And now, guess what? Mufti’s newfound hobby earned him a spot as a finalist at the 2016 Eagle Award Documentary Competition. He and his friend, Fery Sriafandi, co-directed a documentary film on reproductive health education for disabled students, “Aku Perlu Tahu” (I Need to Know).
The Eagle Award Documentary Competition is a prestigious film competition, wherein young filmmakers can showcase their critical insights into various issues in Indonesia. The award, which was initiated in 2005, is one of the most anticipated documentary film competition in the country.
“The judges said my project was unique because it discusses issues of reproductive health education for disabled students,” Mufti told AMINEF at an interview earlier this week, adding that he competed against around 250 applications for a place at the competition.
In the 25-minute documentary, Mufti invites his audience into the life of Achmad Fathul Iman, a teacher of reproductive health education at a private Islamic senior high school for students with disabilities in Jombang, East Java.
Children with disabilities often become easy objects of sexual harassment. Many reports touch upon this issue. World Health Organization (WHO), for instance, reported that children with disabilities are 2.9 times more likely than non-disabled children to be victims of sexual violence.
The film, therefore, wanted to raise its audience’ awareness of this problem. It wanted to make more people understand that reproductive health education actually aims to empower the students with disabilities themselves.
Mufti’s idea on talking about the subject through a film was inspired by his studies at the Parkland College. He said a professor had taught him that “film is a powerful tool to influence people.” He hoped that the film could change people’s, and especially the government’s, perspective in looking into the students with disabilities.
On Tuesday, “Aku Perlu Tahu” and four other films, the finalists of the 2016 Eagle Award Documentary Competition, premiered at a movie theater in Central Jakarta. Indonesian Health Minister, Nila F. Moeloek, attended the event. This year, her ministry cooperated with the Eagle Institute to organize the competition. The institute will announce the winner of this year’s competition in an awards event on November 15, 2016.
Following this event, Mufti, who daily works as an Arabic language lecturer at State Islamic Academy of Higher Education (STAIN) Kediri, East Java, plans to establish a film community for santri – students at pesantren (Islamic boarding school) – in his hometown, Jombang. He said that many santri are interested in filmmaking but due to limited facilities and resources, they are unable to develop their talents.
“Hopefully, later on, santri who are capable filmmakers will give workshop to their friends. And then their friends can also teach more people to make films,” said Mufti.
Before wrapping up his conversation with AMINEF, Mufti encouraged his fellow CCIP alumni to be more active in their communities to make use of the knowledge and expertise they gained in the US.
“Our time in US is not only for fun. We need to give back to our communities once we come home to Indonesia. We need to spread our knowledge because our society needs us,” he said.
Last Updated: Jul 26, 2017 @ 12:10 pm
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