Research about the possibilities for HAPIN to start providing micro credit in
the Baliem Valley for indigenous small-scale business
By Sietske Goettsch, intern for HAPIN
Left up: traditional woman’s bag; left under: Sietske Goettsch with Papuan man in traditional cloths, right up: Wamena; right under: successful
coffee cooperative Baliem Arabica
Chapter 1.: Background....................................................................................................................................... 4
The context of Papua: Which factors are hindering the process of development in this region?............... 4
Heidi Scheunemanns report ..........................................................................................................................10
Chapter 2.: Interviews with the local and international NGO’s......................................................................13
Chapter 3.: Interviews with the local small-scale businesses .........................................................................26
Chapter 4.: Obstacles for the small-scale business owner...............................................................................29
Chapter 5.: Micro credit ....................................................................................................................................33
Chapter 6.: What should be done with Heidi Scheunemanns recommendation? ..........................................37
Chapter 7.: Recommendations for HAPIN: .....................................................................................................39
In March 2009, Heidi Scheunemann (MBA), expert on economics in West Papua, evaluated HAPIN’s
work in West-Papua in her report ‘Evaluation-report on small scale business in the Baliem-area’. In this
report, which was in particular about Wamena, the main town in the Baliem Valley, she recommended
HAPIN to change its policy of giving ‘free money’ into providing micro credit. At that time there was
some general skepticism about whether micro credit could work in this region, considering the very
unique culture of the population. Besides, HAPIN has not (yet) established a foundation in Wamena and
has only one fieldworker in Wamena. HAPIN felt the need for further research to analyze what should be
done with Heidi Scheunemanns recommendations. This was the purpose of my visit to Wamena.
For this research I have been three months in Papua, from the beginning of October until the
beginning of February. I spend a short period in Jayapura, but most of the research is done in Wamena. I
came into contact with many expats, local non-governmental organizations and financial institutions that
enlightened me about their work in the Baliem Valley. Together with Martinus O. Doga, HAPIN’s new
employee and Eligius Lagowan, the former one, I visited HAPIN’s projects in and around Wamena. To
further strengthen my research, I interviewed other local small-scale business people and I read a lot of
literature about micro credit in general and the situation of the highlands of West Papua.
The results and analysis of my research will be outlined in this report. To make it accessible for
readers who are not familiar with West Papua, I start with an overview of the development and the
problems of this part of Indonesia. After that, I will shortly explain HAPIN’s work in Wamena and
summarize Heidi Scheunemanns study. When all this necessary background information is discussed, I
will continue with the results of the interviews. Some of the issues that come up will be extra illuminated
in more detail with literature. At the end of the report I will discuss the possibility of micro credit in the
Baliem area and I will formulate recommendations for HAPIN.
Attached to this report you will find a database of all the local and international non-governmental
organizations in the financial sector located in Wamena.
Chapter 1.: Background
The context of Papua: Which factors are hindering the process of development
in this region?
The problematic development process in Papua is a complicated situation. In order to give a
comprehensive overview, I will divide this outline categorically in: history, politics and culture and
Throughout this report I use term ‘Papua’ to refer to the western half of the island of New Guinea and that
covers the part that belongs to Indonesia. The other half, Papua New Guinea is an independent nation. The
area has had many different names in history. Nowadays, Papua covers the Indonesian provinces Papua
and West Papua. Papua has been ‘discovered’ in 1527 by the Portuguese salesmen Jorge de Meneses,
who was looking for spices. Soon, Spanish and Portuguese adventurers followed.1
The first permanent
settlement came a few centuries later. This started in 1855 when two German Protestant Missionaries, C.
W. Ottow and Johann Geissler built a house in Manokwari bay. They were sent by The Dutch Protestant
Organization called ‘The Christian Workman’. The Papuan population was not very interested to learn
about this new religion, however the missionaries stayed. This would eventually result in a Dutch
The Dutch were looking for high-valued spices and metals in the chain of islands, which
would later be called Indonesia. By the use of firearms, the Netherlands could establish a trade monopoly.
As long as the Dutch East Indies Company, ‘Vereenigde Oost-indische Compagnie’ (VOC) could keep
this, they were not interested in much else. Therefore, the locals could keep their rule and culture. During
this area European powers were claiming colonies all over the world. Afraid of the British, who started to
explore the eastern part of New Guinea, the Dutch claimed the western half until the 141º east.3
Berlin Conference in 1885 pressure was exerted on The Netherlands, because of the new risen idea that
colonial possession had to be secured by effective occupation. So far there was no Dutch occupation in
Papua yet. To fulfill these requirements, they established several posts. A minor form of government
Mal Simmons and Corinne Canglas, A study to identify methods/strategies that stimulate community development
for Papuan Communities in Jayapura Regency, YPMD, (June 2009) 4.
Kal Muller, Introducing Papua, (Indonesia 2008) 98 -99.
Willem Carel Klein, Nieuw Guinea: de ontwikkeling op economisch, sociaal en cultureel gebied, en Nederlands en
Australisch Nieuw Guinea, Volume 1, (Michigan 1954) 1-27.
started, but the situation in Papua did not change much until the Second World War began.4
In 1942 Japan
occupied Papua along with the whole Indonesian archipelago for two years. Eventually the Allies came to
help and overthrew the Japanese. The US army led by General Mc Arthur landed on what is now Papua
New Guinea, to liberate Dutch New Guinea from Japanese occupation.5
The fact that Dutch could not
resist the Japanese on their own, showed the local people that it was possible to defeat The Netherlands.
This set the stage for the independence of Indonesia.6
After the Second World War international pressure
forced The Netherlands to withdraw from Indonesia, but the Dutch tried to hold on Dutch New Guinea.
They argue that the Papuan culture was completely different than the Indonesian and that this population
deserved the right of self-determination. Off course, the Dutch also thought of its own reputation that
would be damaged.7
They encouraged Papuan nationalism and started to build schools and training
programs to prepare the Papuan people for independence by 1970. Indonesia claimed that Dutch New
Guinea should be part of Indonesia because it had been a part the Dutch East Indies just like the rest of
Indonesia. Indonesian troops infiltrated Papua but with no success. The Papua population attacked them or
handed them over to The Netherlands. Eventually the US forced The Netherlands to move out, which led
to a transfer of power to the Indonesians in 1962.8
Under auspices of the UN it was agreed that Papua
could determine by the end of 1969 whether it would be independent. In the New York Agreement was
registered that all adult Papuans had the right to participate in an act of self-determination to be carried
out in accordance with international practice. This was called ‘the act of free choice’, but about this
process and the outcome is debate until today..9
Not all the Papuans were allowed to vote, the election was
public, so there appeared to be no way to freely vote for independence. Unanimously was chosen for
integration with Indonesia.10
Before and after this act, Indonesia faces armed oppression from the
Papuans. In 1998 the post-Suharto government was willing to listen to the Papuans and things slightly
changed. To stave off the growing oppression, the Indonesian government passed a proposal in 2001 that
devolved the authority of the development of Papua from Jakarta to the provincial government in Papua.
Muller, Introducing Papua, 104-106.
Gordon R. Sullivan, New Guinea 24 January 1943-31 December 1944,
<http://www.history.army.mil/brochures/new-guinea/ng.htm> (last consulted on 6 May 2010)
Muller, Introducing Papua, 159.
Alfred Staarman, Afscheid van Nieuw Guinea,
ea.pdf> (last consulted on 6 May 2010)
Simons and Canglas, A study to identify methods/strategies that stimulate community development for Papuan
C.L.M. Penders, The West New Guinea Debacle: Dutch Colonization and Indonesia, 1945-1962 (Hawaii 2002)
<http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB128/index.htm> (last consulted on 22 May 2010)
Brad Simpson, Indonesia's 1969 Takeover of West Papua Not by "Free Choice", (July 2004) The national security
archive, < http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB128/index.htm > (last consulted on 22 May 2010)
This was called the Special Autonomy Law (OTSUS). A democratization process started in which the
decentralization was regarded as one of the main elements. Military presence was reduced, the province
was renamed Papua, autonomy increased and 80% of the revenue from the province was reinvested here.
Even tough, the people still want total independence and feel frustrated that the government keeps selling
the natural resources of this province without any compensation.11
The consequences of the history of Papua can be seen in everyday life. There are quite a lot
influences from the Netherlands and the people still remind the colonization as a time in which life was
better. The act of free choice created a bigger distance between the Papuans and the population in the
other parts of Indonesia. The Papuan people keep hoping and demanding independency.
In 2003 the central government declared that Papua would be spilt into three provinces: Papua Province,
Central Irian Jaya Province, and West Irian Jaya Province. Because of opposition the plan for Central Irian
was scrapped. Since 2006 there are two official provinces; Papua province and West Papua.12
decentralization brings the seats of government theoretically closer to the people. The directly elected
provincial governors and the heads of all the 29 districts are indigenous Papuans, but the (un-elected and
power-brokering) senior officials are mostly public servants from Java. It also leads to an increase in army
and police units at the districts and sub-districts level.13
But even more unfortunate is that the criteria for
the establishing of provinces are rather vague and not consequent and it currently means that it is unclear
what consequences it has for the special autonomy law that does not recognize the provinces.14
Because of the history and government policy regarding the provinces of Papua, the Papua
population has not much faith in the government in Jakarta. Papua is rich when you take a look at its
natural resources. Especially the mines of Freeport are lucrative; the company in Timika is Indonesia’s
biggest taxpayer. Most of this natural wealth however is not reinvested in Papua. This province is the
poorest part of Indonesia.
Probably the most frustrating government policy is called transmigration. The government policy
of transmigration (transmigrasi) is the encouragement of the Indonesians from other (overpopulated)
islands to migrate to Papua. This plan was designed to cultivate this primitive and remote area and enforce
Neles Tebay, Papua its problems and possibilities for peaceful solutions, (Jakarta 2008) 51-77.
Simons and Canglas, A study to identify methods/strategies that stimulate community development for Papuan
Tebay, Papua: It’s problems and possibilities for a peaceful solution, 51-77.
This concept was born under Dutch rule, but it was Suharto who moved it into higher gear with
international assistance from the World Bank.16
Mr. Martono, the former Indonesian Minister of
Transmigration, proudly stated his government's policy this way: "By way of Transmigration, we will try
to realize what has been pledged - to integrate all the ethnic groups into one nation. The different ethnic
groups will in the long run disappear because of integration, and there will be one kind of man."17
effects were terrible for the indigenous population, and the Papuans are afraid that one day they might
become a minority in their own land. According to West Papua Action, an Irish solidarity and
campaigning initiative, the new transmigrant settlements have an average of 75% transmigrants and 25%
The transmigrants bring ‘modernity’ and a new way of life to the area. However this resulted in
an impoverishment of the situation of Papuans. They were abandoned and obliged to trade their traditional
way of life for the wage economy. The locals need to adapt to this ‘modern’ situation but have barely
enough education to compete with the Indonesians. Therefore Indonesians have better jobs and the
Papuans became lowly-paid laborers. Requests for improvement of the loans and work conditions could
even lead to punishment.19
Culture and religion:
The Papuans are Melanesians, they have no historical or ethnical ties with the Indonesians. This
population compromises at least 300 tribes and together they have about 250 different languages and circa
hundreds dialects. This leads to the astonishing conclusion that in the whole New Guinea Island (Papua
and PNG) 15% of the world’s languages is spoken by 0,01% of the global population.20
Besides their own
language, the more than 300 tribes all have own practices and customs. For centuries the Papuans have
lived with barely any contact with other cultures.21
These tribal families live together with their
community in Honai huts; men with men and women with women. Men can have more than one woman.
Australia West Papua Association, Sydney, West Papua Information Kit,
<http://userweb.cs.utexas.edu/users/cline/papua/references.htm> (last consulted on 8 May 2010)
Eric Toussaint and Damien Millet, Indonesia: History of a bankruptcy orchestrated by IMF and the World Bank
<http://www.cadtm.org/Indonesia-History-of-a-bankruptcy> (July 2005; last consulted on 7 May 2010)
Benedetti, Cultural Diversity in West Papua <http://www.westpapua.ca/?q=node/122> (January 2005; last
consulted on 6 May 2010)
Transmigration, West Papua Action <http://westpapuaaction.buz.org/transmigration.htm> (last consulted on 7
John Wing and Peter King, Genocide in West Papua? The role of the Indonesian state apparatus and a current
needs assessment of the Papuan people, Centre for Peace and conflict studies University of Sydney
regions/docs_indonesia/genocide_in_west_papua.pdf > (August 2005; last consulted on 10 May 2010)
BBC World Service, Case Study: West Papua's cultural identity,
consulted on 7 May 2010)
Benedetti, Cultural Diversity in West Papua <http://www.westpapua.ca/?q=node/122>
They have no private property, at least not more than needed for daily needs. Equality among family and
tribe members is very important, even landownership is communal. The families and communities are
very important; it is all about relationships. People take care of each other and by investing in
relationships they build a safety net. Modernization is bringing a Western individualistic way of business.
Papuan people find difficulties in adapting to this. In spite of the importance of equality, the Papuan
society is quite patriarchal. The men are making the decisions, providing and protection the family and the
women have the primary responsibility of the wellness of the family. Papuans strive to live in harmony
with there complete environment, human beings, animals and even spiritual word.
For the Papuans are end products of years of development and technical advance is not
considered as wealth. They are not dependent on hard work and do not strive for economic gain.22
they start a business they will usually not ask for payment to their relatives. That is considered to be very
impolite. Even though it can lead to bankruptcy of the business. Also, Papuan people don’t feel the need to
work for profit as a goal in it self. They start the company to make money for a specific purpose like
education for the children. When this aim is achieved, there is no need for the business anymore.
Furthermore, the more traditional tribes are still not conversant with the concept of ‘money’ as means of
exchange and saving. In these more remote areas the rural population still relies on the traditional health
These days Christianity is the biggest religion in Papua, but the early Papuans were animist. They
intend to live in harmony with the whole environment, including human beings, ancestors, spirits, plants
and animals. They have a strong honoring of their ancestors and spiritual forces and their understanding of
the world is directly related to their mythology.23
This Animism is related to the culture and shapes
everyday live. However, it is not recognized by the government as an official religion. All Indonesians are
required to have their religion mentioned on their identity card, animism can not be chosen.24
Elements of this religion and culture can still be seen, but many communities now begin to change
their customary patterns. These changes have occurred as a result of the presence of Christianity, migrants
of outsiders, including business people and companies and formal education.25
Simons and Canglas, A study to identify methods/strategies that stimulate community development for Papuan
Presi Mandari, Religion on Indonesian ID cards blamed for deaths, AFP World Wide Religious News (7 April 2007)
<http://wwrn.org/articles/24752/?&place=indonesia-brunei§ion=sectarian-violence> (last consulted on 22
UNDP (2005b) Papua needs assessment: An overview of findings and implications for the programming of
development assistance. Jayapura United Nations Development Program
It is sad to see a decline in presence of this unique culture, and on top of that discovering that the Papuan
people are poorer than the Indonesians in and outside Papua. Cultural, political and historical reasons
created a position for this population at the bottom of the society. It is a bitter irony that despite being one
of the richest provinces in terms of natural resources, Papua has one of Indonesia's highest rates of
poverty. Examples that can make it more concrete are the following: More than 50 per cent of children
under five years old is undernourished; only 10 per cent of Papuans has a high school education and only
one per cent has graduated from college; the literacy rate is 44 per cent for women, and 58 per cent for
men; an the spread of HIV and AIDS in the territory has reached an alarming level: it is estimated that as
much as five per cent of the population may be infected with HIV.26
HAPIN is a Dutch foundation especially focused on Papua. The name ‘HAPIN’ is short for “Hulp aan
Papoea’s in Nood” (Papua support foundation). HAPIN is established in 1972 to improve the economic
and social-cultural situation of the indigenous Papuan people. This mission is formulated on HAPIN’s
website: ‘HAPIN invests in a sustainable future for Papua by supporting local initiatives that contribute to
the strengthening of the rights and the improvement of the wellness of the indigenous populations in
Papua.’ In order to do this, HAPIN supports small-scale development projects and supplies scholarships
for promising Papuan students.27
The office of HAPIN is located in Utrecht, which means that most of the work is coordinated
from the Netherlands. HAPIN has one employee in each district were they are active (Sorong, Manokwari,
Baliem, Jayapura, Marauke). I spoke with Jeroen Overweel the director of the organization, Jaap van der
Werf the national coordinator based in Jayapura, Eligius Lagowan the former fieldworker in the Baliem
Area and Martinus O. Doga the new fieldworker. At the time I visited Wamena, Martinus was just
installed and Eligius was helping him to start. They have built a new office in the centre of Wamena, a one
man workplace, where Martinus can do his job. Nevertheless, HAPIN is not yet an official recognized
Eligius has a strong personality and has performed good work for Hapin over the last years. He is
now chosen for a government job and unfortunately has to end his work for HAPIN. The fieldworker is
Martinus O. Doga. His job is to maintain a good relationship with the business owners, to coach and to
help them. He visits all the small scale business that are receiving financial support from HAPIN ones a
Life in West Papua, Progressio
<http://www.ciir.org/progressio/Internal/89678/91178/91181/life_in_west_papua/> (last consulted on 7 May
Hapin < http://www.hapin.nl> (last consulted on 20 April 2010)
week. He also tries to find new entrepreneurs that could use HAPIN’s support, but the initiative for this
has to come from them. The entrepreneurs can present a proposal, which goes to HAPIN in Utrecht for the
approval. This can be money for building a workplace, a bigger kiosk, or a first inventory for a small
Together, Martinus and Eligius showed me HAPIN’s projects around Wamena, the results from
these visits will be outlined later on in the report.
Heidi Scheunemann’s report
At the end of 2008, Heidi Scheunemann (MBA) starts an evaluation research on the progress of small-
scale businesses that have received financial help from HAPIN. In order to do that, she visited and
interviewed 23 businesses together with Eligius Lagowan, HAPIN’s only fieldworker at that time in
Wamena. Because the research in this report is a follow-up on her work, I will give a short summary of
her results and discuss the recommendations that she made.
Heidi Scheunemann’s conclusion of the progress of the small-scale businesses supported by
HAPIN is quite negative. Though, she does highlight that all of the entrepreneurs that they visited were
still running after two or three years. Scheunemann considers this as a good sign, because many Papuan
businesses go bankrupt after a few months. This success, according to Heidi Sheunemann, lies in the fact
that Eligius Lagowan constantly visited the entrepreneurs to motivate and support them.28
Figure 1.: Factors for failures in Papuan business, perceived by Heidi Scheunemann
Even though these businesses still exist, there is not much progress to notice. With the exception
of a few entrepreneurs, most of them show barely any improvement. Scheunemann gives a broad
Heidi Scheunemann, Small-scale business development in the Baliem-Area, 11.
Factors for failures and discontinuation of activities
1. Tribal oriented mindset 9. Lack of mental strength to compete with non
2. Cultural bondages Papuan businesses
3. Lack of business spirit 10. Lack of management knowledge
4. Lack of basic education 11. Lack of trust between the group members
5. Lack of basic economic knowledge 12. Jealousy
6. Lack of marketing experience 13. Infrastructure
7. Lack of administration skills 14.Lack of good training on the job, high quality
8. Lack of motivation to learn coaching and capacity building
administration skills 15. Lack of investment capital
overview of the factors that are hindering the entrepreneurs in the development of their business. Because
these factors are very essential in any analysis about micro finance in Papua, I will discuss them later.
Taking a look at Scheunemann’s general results and the factors for failure in figure 1: it is
interesting to see that most of the factors she mentions that are hindering the entrepreneurs are related to
Others have to do with a lack of some sort of education, and at last we can find some
negative influence from the national situation in Indonesia. When I started the research, I found out that
almost everyone sees cultural elements as the biggest hinder for the economy, therefore I will outline this
further in the report. For now, it needs to be mentioned that this is the reason why Heidi Scheunemann
recommends HAPIN to focus on training with the different culture of this population in mind.
In addition: Heidi Scheunemann finds out that there is a discrepancy between the proposals
HAPIN receives from the small-scale businesses, in which they ask for support, and the actual outcome.
Income does not rise in the long term, a lot of businesses are not meant to be a developing business; they
only run it for a specific reason and when that is achieved, there is no need for the business anymore.
More over, Papua is not a saving culture, which (among others) means that they do not save money for
Figure 2.: Heidi Scheunemann’s recommendations for HAPIN31
Scheunemann, 17. Scheunemann uses the concepts ‘family business’ and ‘group business’, I will do the same in
this report. By the first we mean a business owned by one family, a group business is owned by several people that
are not family members.
General recommendations: what can HAPIN do to help Papuan business owners in the Baliem
area to improve and develop their entrepreneur skills?
1. Concentrate on supporting individual and family businesses instead of group business (...)
2. Concentrate on individual teaching and coaching instead of theoretical teaching in class rooms
3. Select more young and motivated fieldworkers for coaching tasks (...)
4. Implement a Training of Trainers program (TOT) to prepare fieldworkers to do high quality
5. Focus on teaching and coaching methods which are suitable to the cultural context. (...)
6. Give microcredit instead of 'free money' for entrepreneurs. (...)
With her list of factors for failure and discontinuation, the conclusion that the entrepreneurs are
mostly hindered by cultural issues, lack of education and national factors, and the finding that many of the
proposals did not correspond with their actual outcome, Heidi Scheunemann recommends HAPIN a
change of policy.
It is the last recommendation (Give micro credit instead of ‘free money’ for entrepreneurs) that
HAPIN asked me to investigate. Heidi Scheunemann gives an overview of her argumentation for micro
credit in stead of ‘free money’ as you can see below in figure 3. A first look shows that she comes with a
few general benefits for micro credit and a few advances that are mainly the result of training. The
arguments for and against micro credit will be discussed in the chapter about micro credit, further on in
Figure 3.: Benefits of micro credit above ‘free money’ giving, as mentioned in the report of Heidi
Several reasons why a microcredit-system for investment capital seems to be the better choice than a donation-system
- Most business owners that received donations from HAPIN in the last years have not been able to increase their business
owned capital. The main reason for this is, that most of them did not run a documentation of administration system
continuously and that they do have big problems in basic counting methods and in money management. In all the visited
businesses smaller or bigger amounts if the donated money were not used for developing the business but for consumption
and or donations to family members in need. (…)
- Donations make people depended on outside help and decrease their level of self esteem. It gives them the feeling that they
are not able to achieve something on their own but have to beg for help.
- Because donations do not have to be paid back and often are not followed by further coaching of the recipient through
routine visits, there will be a risk that some people who do not have the plan to actually run a real business but who are
clever enough to take their chances to get some financial help, will try to get some money with dishonest proposals and fake
business plans. (…)
- If a business person knows that he/she has to pay back the money which is given to him/her, then he/she will focus much
more on using that money in a profitable way.
- If the given money has to be paid back, a business person will better understand the importance of administration for good
money management and will therefore be more open to learn a good but simple administration system.
- Using a microcredit-system might help to avoid the common situation that applicants ask for too high and unrealistic
amounts of money.
- If HAPIN would start with a microcredit system, then many more business owners could get help from HAPIN, because
the money which will be paid back could be used to give new loans to other business owners.
Scheunemann comes with an all inclusive plan that covers the whole spectrum of tasks related to the
providing of micro credit. First of all, she recommends HAPIN to enlarge its staff in Wamena. The
entrepreneurs that are selected by HAPIN to receive a credit have to be willing to participate in business
training. Scheunemann suggests HAPIN to work with one senior staff and three fieldworkers. The senior
staff will be in charge for all the money transactions, help and lead the fieldworkers. The fieldworkers will
do the coaching and help the entrepreneurs with good quality training. In other words: it means HAPIN
would have to set up a complete new organization structure to implement this micro finance system.
HAPIN will take care of all the necessary aspects; selection, training, coaching and credit providing etc. It
is an ambitious and labor-intensive plan, but it sounds promising.
Chapter 2.: Interviews with the local and international NGO’s
Aims of the interviews:
1. Getting to know the local and international non-governmental organizations that are active in Wamena;
their activities, successes and difficulties.
2. Discovering what kind of financial help activities are going on in the non-profit and commercial sector.
3. Getting to know the professional opinion of the local NGO’s and the international organizations about
the economic problems of the indigenous population.
4. Discussing the benefits and possibilities for micro credit in the Baliem Valley.
5. Discussing the possibilities for HAPIN to extend or change her financial help policy.
(Local Non-Governmental Organization = NGO, International Non-Governmental Organization = IO,
commercial institution = CI, Bank = B, Person = P)
IO Oikonomos Marnix Balke and Mija den Hartog
IO ILO Didi Wiryono
IO UNDP Lioba van Dam
IO World Vision International Victor
IO KinderNotHilfe Priscilla Yukwa
IO Peace Brigade International Carole Wreckinger
NGO Yakpismi Elia Jare
NGO Yasumat Naomi Sosa
NGO Yayasan Humi Inane Salomina Yaboisembur
NGO Yayasan Bina Adat Walesi Lorentz Lani
NGO Pesat Marde Stenly Mawikere
NGO Yukemdi Yoram Yogobi
CI Koperasi Simpan Pinjam -
CI Pegadaian Wellny
CI KTNA Marcel Huby
CI KUD Cahaya Baliem Erwin Simamora
B Bank Papua Victor Sahilatua
B Bank Mandiri Ruth
B Bank BRI Zainul Arifin, credit advisor Henri
P Pastoor in ruste Frans Liesthout
P MBA Heidi Scheunemann
Results of the interviews:
Organizations in Wamena: There appeared to be a lot of NGO’s and International Organizations in
Wamena. All of them are focusing on the indigenous population. Below you find a description of the
organizations that are working with financial support or related subjects. A few of them turned out to be
engaged in micro credit programs. This was not only in the non-profit sector but also the commercial
institutions had a few micro finance programs.
Cooperation: There is not much cooperation among the different organizations at all. Most of the
organizations work on their own and are not much aware of the activities of other organizations.
Oikonomos and ILO are well-known by the other organizations and are used to cooperate. The bigger
institutions in Wamena are pretty good aware of the other NGO’s, but do not have a complete overview.
Especially the small NGO’s are neither well known nor familiar with the other organizations. Sometimes
even the existence of a NGO is unknown by the others. Unfortunately, this also counts for HAPIN.
Christianity: More than half of the NGO’s were based in Christianity (Oikonomos, Yakpesmi, World
Vision International, World Relief, Pesat, etc). Most of the times this was not just a background, but also a
factor strongly presented in the mission of the NGO.
Gender: Most organizations mention gender as a factor in the development struggles. However only a few
(ILO, Yasumat, Yayasan Humi Inane, World Vision) are actually organizing activities to improve gender
Overview of the Non-profit organizations in Wamena that are involved in financial help:
Yayasan Oikonomos Papua (YOP (also known as Oikonomos)): Oikonomos is the biggest and best
known non-profit organization in Wamena. It is a Dutch Christian organization, established in 1994. The
mission of the organization is ‘to further develop the society by supplying support to the ‘weaker’ people
via education and training, with an aim to create sustainability’.32
Oikonomos started in Wamena in 2004.
YOP’s main target area is Yalimo, but they also do the coaching for businesspeople in Jayawijaya. The
focus is on the economic capabilities of the indigenous population, because they notice that only a small
part of this population is involved in the trade and skills exerted in this region. For this reason YOP
supplies several different training facilities: a building program, trading program, logistic program, an
incubator, a business school, providing IT-trainings, learning by doing in a kiosk and technical training.
Oikonomos has a special program for the Pass-Valley.33
Besides, they are also running a pedagogical
academy for primary education.
Micro credit: Oikonomos has a small-scale micro credit program. About 25 entrepreneurs received
a loan with a maximum of around 2 million Rupiah. The interest rate is around 3%. The
repayment of these loans is not very high. Oikonomos does not have much capacity for the
coaching and assistance of these people which is probably one of the reasons for this. The program
is still young, but lessons can be learned about which businesses are capable of repaying what kind
amount of loans. With these new insights, the program continues. Even more interesting is the
plan Oikonomos has to open a credit union (CU). This is a micro finance institution, which makes
it possible for the poorer people to save and borrow money. All these people start with saving
money and become a member of the CU. This means that everyone can participate in meetings
and has a vote in the decision making. Only individuals can become members, not organizations.
Oikonomos will start the institutionalization of the CU and her own people will be the first
members. This implies that the CU will start with people that already had a financial or business
Oikonomos <http://www.oikonomos.org> (last consulted on 20 April 2010)
Yayasan Oikonomos Papua (YOP) Buletin – Edisi 2 – 2008
International Labor Organization (ILO): The ILO was active in Wamena by the time I was there, but at
this moment not anymore. The ILO is the tripartite UN agency that brings together governments,
employers and workers of its member states to promote decent work throughout the World. By focusing
on work and employment, they try to improve the economic development and progress.34
The ILO in
Wamena provides trainings about economic empowerment and related topics. During my visit, there were
only two employers for the ILO in this town. They were developing an ambitious plan to provide general
business training in the small villages. With ILO’s program “Gender Entrepreneurship Together”, GET
Ahead, attention is given to the unequal relationship between man and woman. By means of training, they
try to create awareness for these gender issues, in order to generate more respect for women which will
make it easier for them to contribute to the income generation.
Micro credit: The ILO only provides trainings, no money or credit. However they are really
enthusiastic about it and have lots of experience with microfinance institutions. They suggest not
to subsidize loans, but to invest in the socialization of the microfinance institution and the
trainings in which all the clients should participate before they receive money.
United Nations Development Program (UNDP): The UNDP is the UN's global development network, an
organization advocating for change and connecting countries to share knowledge, experience and
resources to help people build a better life. The UNDP started in 1970. The organization helps developing
countries to attract and use aid effectively. This work can be divided in categories: democratic
government, poverty reduction, crisis prevention and recovery, environment and energy, HIV/Aids,
women empowerment and capacity development. The UNDP supports Papua through a People-centered
Development Program (PDP). This sets out a structure within which multiple stakeholders can collaborate
to strengthen local capacities of strategic importance for Papua and West Papua provinces. The PDP adds
value to existing and planned initiatives by improving coordination, creating opportunities for cross-actor
learning, partnerships and trust building. The aim is to achieve the Millennium Development Goals
(MDGs) by strengthening the local government and civil society.35
The UNDP in the Papua provinces focuses on the following areas: pro-poor policy development
and operational planning, locally effective delivery of basic services, monitoring and evaluation of poverty
reduction programs, coordination of donor support. Additionally, they support the government with their
new Government Program Rencana Strategis Pembangunan Kampung/RESPEK (or Strategic Village
International Labor Organization <http://www.ilo.org> (last consulted on 21 April 2010)
About UNDP, A world of development experience <http://www.undp.org/about> (last consulted on 21 April
Development Plan). This program includes the government support of a block grant of 100 million Rupiah
for each village in Papua to use for community development. RESPEK has incorporated the MDG’s as a
guideline to measure development. The UNDP helps some of the communities with the planning and
preparation of budgets and also provides training to the kabupaten, government and department staffs.36
World Vision International (WVI): World Vision is a Christian international humanitarian organization
that works on community development. The organization is founded in the United States in 1950. WVI is
active in the area of health, economy and education but their focus is on the children for whom they have a
special sponsor program.37
WVI has been in Wamena since 1994. The main task of World Vision is giving
or supporting several trainings. This can be training about agriculture, animal husbandry, business and
gender. World Vision in Papua focuses on the indigenous population and in order to do that they visit the
villages at least ones a month, sometimes for several days. This is where they give the training, which can
sometimes take 10 days. World Vision notices that it is very difficult to teach about aspects that require a
change of lifestyle. It takes a lot of time and when the course is over, people forget about it and continue
their life as before. Both men and women are invited for the training, and World Vision provides the
meals. WVI mentions that they cooperate sometimes with other institutions. For example, they have
helped out Oikonomos and the government ones by financing the transport costs so, they could give
A part of this enormous international organization is Vision Fund. They are very experienced in
financial help and even microcredit. Overall their repayment rate is 99%38
, which is huge. Unfortunately
they are not active in Papua yet. This might come in the future.
World Relief: World Relief was closed during my stay in Wamena, so unfortunately I have not been able
to speak to one of them in person. The other organizations I spoke were familiar with the existence of
World Relief, but not that much with its aims and tasks. Similar to World Vision, this is an international
humanitarian organization based on Christianity. It is established in 1944 in the United States. The overall
mission of the organization is to empower the local Church to serve the most vulnerable people. They
work in the areas: disaster response, child development, maternal and child health, HIV/aids, agricultural
development, immigrant services and, microfinance.39
UNDP in Papua, Supporting development in Tanah Papua <http://www.undp.or.id/papua> (last consulted on 21
World Vision <http://www.worldvision.org> (last consulted on 21 April 2010)
Vision Fund the microfinance subsidiary of World Vision, Hope for a better future, Annual report 2008.
World Relief <http://www.worldrelief.org> (last consulted on 21 April 2010)
KinderNotHilfe (KNH): KinderNotHilfe is a Christian organization for children’s aid based in Germany.
It has been founded in 1959. KNH finances projects, which promote the sustainable development of
children and young people, try to awaken their potential and improve their chances. They do this with
different forms of assistance, depending on what is appropriate in the situation.40
KNH is not active in
Wamena at the moment, but they have been. At the moment, there still is a contact person here and maybe
in the future the activities will proceed. KNH worked in Wamena with self-help groups for women. These
are groups of about ten women and one staff member that come together ones a week. They have trainings
and discussions afterwards; the focus is on topics about women and children.
Peace Brigade International (PBI): This is an international NGO that has promoted non-violence and
protected human rights since 1981. They have been in Wamena since 2005. Here, PBI works with a small
team of European volunteers. They inform the population about safety, security and human rights.
Moreover, they provide protective accompaniment to human rights defenders threatened by political
violence and they facilitate other peace-building initiatives.41
In the past PBI had some problems with their
visa situation, but everything is settled now.
Yakpesmi (YKP) en Yayasan Pendidikan Reformasi (YRP): These two foundations make one
organization together with one board. The organization has Dutch roots. The Dutch founded it in 1984
with the aim to help the indigenous population. Most of the employees here are Papuan people. YRP and
YKP work in the following districts: Jayawijaja, Yahukimo, Pekun, Bintang, Mamparotengah and
Yalimo.YPR is the Reformed foundation for education. It provides training for students who want to
become a pastor or a magister, they teach the gospel and congregation, they financially support students
who want to have an education for a pastor in other areas like Jayapura or even in Bali and they have a
Sunday school. YRP is the spiritual foundation where as Yakpesmi focuses on the society. YPK, on the
other hand, supports education, economy and health. They have two dormitories for men and women (16-
20) who go to secondary education and in Jayapura one dormitory for the university. Their economic
support contains business trainings and the financing of transport for people from out of town who need to
sale agricultural products in Wamena. Yakpesmi has local employees in the villages that can give
trainings there. Sometimes they send people from Wamena to the villages for more specific teaching or to
further educate the local employees. Trainings can be about business, literacy, gender and advocacy.
Besides training they also supply material. YPK is positive about the results of their training. They also
Kindernothilfe <http://en.kindernothilfe.org/> (last consulted on 21 April 2010)
Peace Brigade International <http://www.peacebrigades.org> (last consulted on 28 April 2010)
inform people about the economic effects of their ‘social tinggi’ and slowly they notice a change in this
Micro credit: Yakpesmi also provides micro credit. They do this only for the agricultural business;
ask no interest in return and the clients can choose a loan from 5, 8 or 10 million. Every month
they can pay a little amount back. Before the clients receive a loan they make a contract in which
pigs are mentioned as collateral. In case the farmers are not able to pay the loan back, they have to
give one or two pigs.
Yayasan Sosial Honai (YSH): Unfortunately, I could not arrange a meeting with someone from YSH, but
this NGO has a good reputation. This local foundation is established in 2001 and is involved in several
areas of community development in Jayawijaya and Lanny Jaya. YSH is supporting collective farming
business. They do this together with the West Papua Trickle Up Program. YSH supports the activities of
125 business groups that are all formed by their criteria. Moreover, YSH has been involved in peace
building activities (human rights promotions, research/conflict analysis, early warning/fact finding, peace
journalism/media strategies, trauma counseling, advocacy/lobbying, promoting tolerance and pluralism,
promoting good governance/rule of law).42
Yayasan social untuk masyarakat terpencil (Yasumat): Yasumat is a local NGO that provides several
forms of technical assistance and brings the people and organizations in contact with each other. Yasumat
was established in 1995 by local leaders from Yahukimo and since 1996 it is officially registered as a
foundation. This organization exists to bring appropriate development and reduce poverty in Yahukimo.
The main focus in community development is currently given to the district Ninia. One of the first
activities of this NGO was to assist local communities suffering from famine as a result from a widespread
drought during 1996-1997. Her work has expanded since then and now also includes the areas:
community health and food security; basic education and literacy; community-based natural resource
management; mobilization and empowerment for community development; economic development.43
Micro credit: Since about a year, Yasumat works with a very new and interesting microfinance
program in Ninia, a community bank. Business groups can ask for a loan if they offer Yasumat a
Direktori Peacebuilding Indonesia, Yayasan Sosial Honai
<http://www.direktori-perdamaian.org/ina/org_detail.php?id=369> (last consulted on 1 May 2010)
Heidi Scheunemann, UN Joint Program for the Papua highlands, ILO-UNDP collaboration, 15-16.
business proposal. If they are not able to write this down, the staff can help them. Yasumat works
with only three (Papuan) staff members in the village. The loans can have a maximum of 2
million. The chief of the village is responsible, this means that if one business group is not paying
back a loan, no other members of the village can ask for money.
Yasumat has helped 24 groups of all women, around 70 women so far. Half of them choose to
breed rabbits and the other half have cake making businesses. 25% of the loans have been paid
back, but besides income, it has given these women a social status.44
There is no interest for the
loans, but the people have to share the profit with at least three other businesses. Interesting result
was that he women appeared to be able to give a complete and detailed overview of where they
used all the money for. The men could not do that, consequently the women gained a lot of
respect because of this.
Yayasan Humi Inane – Suare Perempuan (YHI): YHI is a small scale local NGO for women
empowerment, which has been active in Wamena since 1999. There work Papuan men and women who
provide training for the indigenous women. There are trainings in the areas: Law/Rights/Advocacy,
Education/Training/Research, Heath of women and children, business and family economy and Culture
and Politics. YHI is very positive about the results of these trainings. They create self-help groups. The
trainings are given to these groups, and they discuss the topics and keep coming together afterwards.
Micro credit: So far YSP does not provide credit. However they do believe that these women
would like to have credit. It is too difficult for them to go the bank and fulfill all the requirements.
Yayasan Bina Adat Walesi (YBAW): This is a local NGO established by the Dani tribe in 1992 to assist
villages in improving their skills and capacities, strengthen friendships and commitment to maintain
Walesi forests and lands and defend its customary land rights, culture and traditional practices.45
1998 several bigger (international) institutions support the NGO. At the moment their main task is to
provide assistance for the coffee production, which they started in 2008. YBAW buys the coffee beans
and sails them mainly in Bogor (Java). The price for the beans used to fluctuate a lot, now they can make
it quite stable. They are active in 11 districts, but the focus is on Jayawijaya. To buy the beans they go to
the villages themselves. YBAW helps the local villages also in other ways; they support small-scale
businesses and the agricultural sector.
Papua Partners <http://papuapartners.org< (last consulted on 21 April 2010)
BSP – Kemala, Final Project Status Brief 2001 <http://www.worldwildlife.org/bsp/kemala/ybaw.htm> (last
consulted on 22 April 2010)
Micro credit: YBAW is also trying to set up a Simpan Pinjam, a saving and loan institution. This
has not started yet, because there is no starting capital. The idea of this institution is that people
come here to start saving money and after a while they can ask for a loan. There is no interest.
Pesat: This is an Interdenominational Christian NGO established since 1987 to assist in the development
of the villages in Indonesia through education, economic, health and spiritual ministry. Their focus is on
the villages because 67% of the population lives here and they are struggling in many ways. Pesat also
means Integrated Village Ministry (IVM). Pesat wants to improve the situation for the communities in the
villages and the lives of the children. In Wamena, Pesat has an elementary school and a children garden.
Here come around 75 children, ranging from the age of 2,5 to 10 years old. 50% of these children are
indigenous. An important focus of this organization is the support of the local churches to make them the
centre of community development. This is what they call ‘holistic discipleship’.
Yayasan Usaha Ekonomi Masyarakat Desa Indonesia (Yukemdi): Yukemdi is a local NGO that works for
the indigenous population that suffers from HIV/Aids. They give group-training sessions to educate about
the risks of this decease and the way to prevent it. They distribute information material and condoms.
Furthermore, there is individual training for the people that are already infected. People that are not yet
having the symptoms of HIV will be supported to continue or to start working. This is one of the focus
areas, because Yukemdi wants to keep these vulnerable people self-sufficient and strong. When the
decease starts to show its symptoms and working is no longer an option, people will receive other
Currently, Yukemdi suffers from financial problems. The organizations works together in projects
with other NGO's in a network called LSM. From here the projects that are coordinated. At this moment
there is no money for the next project, so there are no ongoing activities.
Financial aid from the commercial institutions: Besides the non-profit sector, the commercial sector is
also providing financial aid for the poor population. The institutions that are doing this are first of all the
banks. Besides the banks, there is a pawnshop in Wamena and there are a few cooperatives.
Koperasi Simpan Pinjam: Even though the name says this is a loan and saving institution, all they do here
is offering loans. This cooperative has a small office where people can come and if their request for a loan
is admitted, they can have the money right away. The maximum of a loan is 10 million. They ask an
interest of 4% for each day, and it has to be collateral. The clients here are mostly older women.
Pegadaian: Pegadaian is the Indonesian word for pawnshop. Since a half year Wamena has her own
pawnshop, which is a branch from a Pegadaian in Jayapura. Because it has only been here for a short
while yet, it is still very small. For the moment, people can come and ask for a loan if they bring gold as
collateral. It takes only fifteen minutes to measure the value of the product that the clients bring. This is
the amount of the loan. There is no maximum or minimum for the loan. The product stays in custody and
the client can take the money with them right away. When the client returns the money, he can have the
product back. The interest is cumulative. It starts with 1,5% for the first day, 2,4% for the next, and so on.
The client has two months to pay back. If it is not paid back after this period, the product will be auctioned
after four months. Currently, it only works with golden jewelry or accessories. In the future this will be
extended to 5 categories: cars, motorbikes, laptops, mobile phones and gold. The pawnshop does not ask
the clients for the reason of their coming, so we do not know much about their motivation. However, since
it is only for short periods, it is probably mainly for consumption. Most of the clients are older women.
Kredit Tani Nelayang Andalan (KTNA): KTNA supplies loans for group businesses. All of these
businesses are families and include about 10 to 20 people. In total, they have been helping around 1000
groups, divided over 30 districts. KTNA only has two employees. The groups can ask for a first loan of 10
to 15 million Rupiah. When everything is paid back properly, they can ask for a second loan with a
maximum of 50 million Rupiah. This already shows that KTNA is working with not very small-scale
businesses. The employees from KTNA go to the villages to check out the businesses and see if they are
trustworthy, before they agree on a loan. The people in charge of the businesses need to have had a
business or financial education or still participating in one. The loan has to be paid back within two years
and there is an interest of 6%. The repayment goes via Bank Papua. Here they have a bank account on
which the money will be saved. KTNA works with many different businesses, even in the agriculture.
They are very positive. The money does not always come back, sometimes it comes slowly, sometimes the
entrepreneur goes bankrupt, sometimes even to jail, but most of the times the loan is repaid. KTNA
believes their success lies within the selection process. They have the experience that family businesses
are a lot more valuable than one-man businesses.
Kredit Unit Desa (KUD) Cahaya Baliem: This is a cooperative where people can ask for a loan and save
money. Many different kinds of businesses are a member. They appear to be very flexible. KUD mentions
the importance of meeting and checking out the business before agreeing on a loan. However there did not
seem to be clear criteria for the selection process. People can ask for a loan of even 50 million Rupiah. For
the repayment they have to come to the office in Wamena, but not necessary every month. KUD started in
1982 and since then they helped about 1788 people.
Bank Papua: Bank Papua has a micro credit program with loans from 5 until 15 million Rupiah. There are
a few requirements to receive a loan. The company has to exist for at least a year, and there is a minimum
for the monthly income and profit in order to see whether the company is profitable. Bank Papua is a bank
from the government, according to their employees; this is the reason that they can give smaller loans than
the other banks. The interest rate is 6%. If a client wants a smaller loan than 5 million he can form a group
with in total 10 members and share the loan. One of them is the coordinator and will be responsible for the
repayment. Besides, Bank Papua yearly receives 1.500 million Rupiah from the government to help the
poor indigenous population. They use this money also for loans which can be smaller than the ones
mentioned before (about 2 million). For this program the bank visits the people and even helps them. For
instance if clients need to go the market to sell products and are not able to transport them, the bank might
be able to arrange this. These visits are ones every month. Bank Papua feels that about as much women as
men come here for a loan.
Bank Mandiri: Bank Mandiri will start with a microcredit program over 6 months. However, none of the
employees of the bank was able to give me any information about how this would look like.
Bank Rayat Indonesia (BRI): Bank BRI has been in Wamena for 25 years now; they are the biggest and
even have three offices. Bank Rayat also believes that there come as much women as men to the bank.
The small loans they give are 5 million Rupiah, this is restricted to 500 people. The interest rate is 1%.
They do have certain requirements before clients can have a loan. They want to know more about the
business, about the money it makes and the monthly profit and how they reinvest the profit. Other than
that, they do have a special micro credit program with loans starting from 500.000 Rupiah. Here the
interest rate is 14 to 16%. The repayment is on monthly bases. The repayment rate is 99%. For this micro
credit program the clients will be visited monthly and they get a small training in finance and business.
They can also open a saving account when they start with 500.000 Rupiah.
BRI has experience in providing loans to group businesses. These companies where not on family
bases. The businesses could have a loan of about 600.000. None of the businesses were able to pay back;
everyone blamed somebody else in the company.
Factors that are hindering the economic situation for the indigenous population in general, as perceived
by the support organizations and financial sector:
- The factor that is by far considered the most important is the Papuan culture. The Papuans have a
different mindset that does not correspond with the Western way of doing business and the
'modern' market mechanisms. Business and private money are not separated. Because of that,
business money is used to maintain relationships with gifts and ‘adat’ ceremonies.
- The governments RESPEK program distributes money to every village and family in order to help
them, but the people are free to spend this in any way they want to. The money is barely used for
community development (for which it is supposed to be) and it creates laziness.
- Transportation. It is difficult and expensive to travel, this can be an important hinder for people
that need to travel to reach the market and sell their products.
- The ‘transmigrasi’: the governments’ policy to support Indonesian people to move to the Papuan
Provinces. These people have a much better education and are taking over the economic sector in
Papua. Papuans can not compete with them.
- Discrimination and neglecting of the Papua’s by the other Indonesian populations and the
government. It has created a very low self-esteem among the Papuan population; they believe they
are not as good and clever as for example Javanese people.
The problems of economic development in this area seem to be related to the gender situation.
Women are main players in the economy here, but they barely get any respect for it.
Factors for failure and success in the area of financial help
- Assistance to a business owned by several people that are not family members usually fails.
Several organizations (Hapin, Bank BRI, KUD Cahaya Baliem) experienced that there is no
loyalty or successful teamwork in group businesses, a lot of times they are only created to fulfill
the criteria for financial help (some NGO’s do not help one-man businesses).
- Frequently and intensive coaching is perceived as an important factor for success.
- Many of the NGOs agree that financial help of any kind should go together with financial
training. Training should preferably go on a one-on-one basis, not in classrooms.
- Notwithstanding the fact that the development practitioners think training is very important, I also
found frustration about the actual results of the ongoing training programs and the time it takes to
change something. It appears that when programs are finished, people immediately go back to
their old habits.
- It is very important to actually visit the local people and analyze the situation carefully, before any
help is given.
- Transportation is not only a hinder for the businesses, but also for the NGO’s. There is not much
infrastructure of good quality, which makes it expense and time-consuming to travel.
How do the NGO's think about the possibility of micro credit in Wamena?
- A few NGO’s were already carrying out a micro credit program (Oikonomos, Yasumat,
Yakpismi). Their programs, the conditions and the interest rate they ask are very different. These
programs show that there is an upcoming believe that micro credit could work in Papua. The
programs are still young and small, so it is not possible to say much about the effects of micro
credit in the Baliem area.
- Even in the commercial sector are a lot of opportunities to receive a small loan (Koperasi Simpan
Pinjam, Pegadaian, KTNA, KUD Cahaya Baliem all three banks). However all these commercial
institutions ask collateral, strong selection criteria and regulations which make it (too) difficult for
the very poor population to fulfill the requirements. Besides, the credits in the commercial sector
start mostly from 5 million Rupiah, which is more than the small-scale businesses need. For the
NGO’s micro credit is perceived as around 2 million Rupiah.
- Most of the NGO’s that are not (yet) providing micro credit say that it is better than providing
‘free money’ and that there is a need among the poor indigenous population for micro credits
(ILO, World Vision, Yayasan Humi Inane, Yayasan Bina Adat Walesi). This means that overall
you can say that the NGO sector is positive about micro credit.
- Notwithstanding the micro credit activities and the optimistic attitude, the NGOs are not very
enthusiastic. They still have their doubts about the program. This is because most expats and local
NGO’s refer to the different mindset as obstacle for the indigenous economy in general. This does
not change when you switch from money giving to credits.
- Almost everyone mentions the need for training as a start for any financial help whether this is a
gift or a loan.
Positive side-effects of the visits:
- I asked a lot of people about the existence of a database with all the NGO’s that are active in
Wamena. This seemed not to exist; therefore I started to make a concept for it. I have already
successfully distributed it in order to bring organizations and people together.
- A few organizations were not familiar with HAPIN at all. I explained them about the organization
and the people were very interested in further contact to see whether there are opportunities for
Chapter 3.: Interviews with the local small-scale businesses
Aims of the visits:
1. Getting to know the ‘small-scale business’ sector in and around Wamena.
2. Trying to find out the needs and hopes of these local business owners.
3. Experiencing the results of the financial help from the NGO’s for the small-scale business.
4. Getting to know if and how these small-scale business owners work with loans and save money.
5. Trying to see the influence of previous mentioned cultural factors in the small-scale business.
The small-scale businesses that I visited for the research are mentioned under here. For almost every visit
I was accompanied by someone from Oikonomos, HAPIN or the ILO. They introduced me, and in case
necessary translated the interview.
Oikonomos: IlO: HAPIN:
- 5 Kiosks - Fishing pools - Rice plantation
- Sew atelier - 2 Kiosks
- 2 Market woman - Rotan and ceramics atelier
- Coffee cooperative - School
Results from the interviews
- Small-scale business in Wamena are very little companies. There is not much diversity among
these businesses. Most people choose to own a small kiosk in which they supply sweets,
stationary and other non-perishable goods. There is an extreme big amount of these kiosks and
they all sell the same. The selling products are not only non-perishable, but are also not daily
needed. This means that there is no risk that their products will perish if they are not bought on
time. On the other hand, clients do not have to come frequently.
- Usually these are family businesses, meaning there is a husband and wife working and children
when they are old enough. The kiosks that I visited, which actually have an administration book,
had on average a turnover of under the 2 million Rupiah per month.
- The indigenous business owners are mostly located out-side the centre of Wamena. In Wamena
the economy seems to be in the hands of non-Papuan people. A good example to demonstrate this
is the main street Jalan Irian. Without exception, all the kiosks located here are owned by non-
Papuans. Only the market women, the becak-drivers and the small ventures along the streets in the
centre were owned by the indigenous population.
- A few of the kiosks that I visited with Oikonomos (because they were participating in their
business course) had been supported by HAPIN before. HAPIN and Oikonomos are very well-
known with each other and cooperate from time to time. However there did not appear to be a
clear overview of all the businesses in Oikonomos’ program that are former HAPIN’s projects.
None of the projects from HAPIN that I visited, was participating in any financial of business
education from Oikonomos. It seems to me that the cooperation between HAPIN and Oikonomos
is not very much defined and could be extended.
- The owners from the three kiosks that I visited with Oikonomos where all in different stages of
Oikonomos’ training program. The difference was remarkable. It demonstrated the success that
can be achieved.
- The clients of HAPIN were all very enthusiastic to see Eligius and Martinus. They were very open
and thankful to HAPIN.
- The same counts for Oikonomos and the ILO. On my trips with them we also found very thankful
and enthusiastic business owners. It showed me that the relationships that are important among
relatives and tribe members are also very strong between the development practitioners and their
- None of the businesses (that I visited) that are supported by HAPIN are taking part in a financial
training, and none of them had a bookkeeping or administration. It would surely make a good
improvement if they could receive more teaching.
Success and problems for the small-scale business:
- The importance of relationships: all small-scale business that I visited, admitted that they help
their relatives financially when they need that. This is mostly about school fees. There was only
one fisherman who said he did not do that, besides he was very successful. The man was
abandoned by his wife because he has HIV/Aids. I believe his decease was one of his stimuli to be
a strong business man. There are not much family strings to support any more.
- Most people did not have any (financial) education, but those who did had a much stronger
- Self-confidence: many people feel that they are not strong enough, not as good as the
transmigrants and other outsiders and not as capable in keeping a business. When this topic is a
part of training, it leads to big successes. This happens in the Kopi Arabica cooperation and in the
- Group-businesses: The one group business that we visited was not a group any more. People did
not show up for work anymore, simply because they did not want to. We only met one group
business, but this example completely corresponds, the stories of the development supporters.
Savings and Loans:
- Only one of the small-scale entrepreneurs that I spoke, saved money on a bank account. Others, if
they save, do that at home. But obviously that is quite difficult with all the donations and support
expected by others and the responsibilities on ‘adat’ ceremonies.
- The businesses that I visited with HAPIN and with Oikonomos, were not used to borrow money
from an institution.
- Someone told me that it is very common to borrow money (informal) from each other with high
interest rates. Unfortunately, I did not have the time or capacity to explore this.
Other results from the visits
- I also visited a few projects of HAPIN that are not profit-driven: an orphanage, a hospital and a
school. The owner of the orphanage Panti Assuhan, also has a café, Café Pelangi to financially
support the children. I was told that the children would work in here, to make money on their own
and be more financially independent. However, in Café Pelangi are only non-Papuan people
working. Most of the cooking is done by Syuul Assa herself, and one of the guys is in charge with
the bread making. The orphans can help every now and then with small activities, but not like a
constant job. It seems that Café Pelangi is more a way to support the orphanage financially than a
way to train the children to do any business or way to sustain them self.
- There is a sort of general wish to seek a job at the government. Working for the government is
known as an easy way to make money, it is not hard work and the salary is good. It is a sad
feature; it tracks people away from institutions that are much needed for the development of the
area (the small businesses, but also from the NGO’s).
Chapter 4.: Obstacles for the small-scale business owner
Heidi gives a summary of the factors that cause problems for the small scale entrepreneur (see figure 1).
There is more research done after this and of course I noticed it in practice, so I will try to give a more
detailed overview of these factors here.46
Especially the issues related to the Papuan culture appear to be a
big hinder. All the expats that I interviewed gave this as the main reason. Because of that, I will put all
these cultural issues together to give a complete overview. I hope it will contribute to general awareness
about the need for prevention for this culture in the process of economic development. Most of the other
hinders can be put together as a lack in financial education.
Social structures - Relationships: In the Papuan culture, relationships are very important, much is
done to maintain these relationships. People live in communities and will continuously help and
support each other. Some family members are more important and can demand gifts from relatives
lower on the social ladder. There is no difference between private and business property, so this
can even include stock or income from the venture. Gifts will be made even when there is no
demanding and also when people can not really afford it. Obviously this can damage the business;
the importance of the venture will never be taken above the maintaining of relationships. The
importance of relationships can also hinder a business because it has to shut down when there is a
problem in the family.
‘Adat’: The business might also be closed when there is an ‘adat’ ceremony in the family;
sometimes this takes days or even weeks. The financial support for these cultural ceremonies is
called ‘acara adat’. This can be for a wedding, funeral, or even a political campaign of a relative.
Insurance: Relationships can also be seen as insurance. People give each other money, goods and
For this overview I also used the following literature: Heidi Scheunemann, UN Joint Program for the Papua
highlands, ILO-UNDP collaboration; Youssef Benlamlih, Papuan entrepreneurs: a primer, (June – July 2009); Mal
Simmons and Corinne Canglas, A study to identify methods/strategies that stimulate community development for
Papuan Communities in Jayapura Regency, YPMD, (June 2009); Elco van Burg, An examination of factors that hinder
and programs that stimulate Papuan entrepreneurs.
even pigs to keep their relationships good. These relationships are important to rely on when
problems rise in the future. Those who have, support others who need help, expecting to receive
something in return when they need help themselves. Therefore this can also be seen as a social
investment. Also, if relationships are not strong, people are afraid to be expelled from the
community and become cursed by their tribe members.
Equality and status: Family members that have too much property will have to share more and
provide more valuable gifts on ceremonies. On the other hand do people care much about status,
and the height of a status is depending on how much people can give away. Having a venture is
good for the social status, because a kiosk can be a mean to give away goods. Besides this high
social pressure, there is the need for equality among tribe and family members. According to the
traditional way of live, there is no private property. At least not more than daily needed. Other
goods are given away to those who are in need.
Profit sharing: Business profit will be shared at the end of the month among the group members
who are involved in the group and their families. This sharing is not based on the results of an
administration book because most entrepreneurs do not have bookkeeping. For this reason it
would be very illogically if the profit would have been counted in a right way.
Tribal structure: Because of the ‘profit sharing among relatives’ and the importance of ‘relations
keeping’ it is difficult for these business owners to work with employees from other tribes in their
Gender: The difference between men and women is at least as present as between young and old.
Women are important economic players, some even say they do most of the work, but they are not
respected for this. Only men make decisions. Sometimes this makes women save money secretly;
to be sure there is enough to pay for example for the education of the children, because they are
afraid that their husband will spoil the money on consumption.
All the issues here are cultural elements. They have a purpose in it self and form a vital
element of the Papuan culture. Changing it could mean a loss of the culture. Especially when
there are other options. Except for the ‘gender’, a lot of the above discussed issues can be
overcome if the entrepreneurs are able to separate their business money from their private
money. This can be learned. Before the concept of this separation will be accepted, the
business owners will have to understand the need for it. It is highly recommended that this is
one of the first topics that need to be treated when people ask for financial help.
Motivation: A lot of people are not really interested in working for their business. If the business
is not meant for income but for status of to give away goods, it will lead to a less disciplined work
attitude. Also, if the business is only meant for a specific purpose instead of making money in the
long run, it might be shut down when the purpose is achieved.
Mindset: A hinder that is mentioned by almost all the development supporters is the different
mindset Papuans have, which is not that of an ideal-type (Western) entrepreneur. The concept of
money driven economy is new. People are used to think in short terms about money. They do not
make long term business plans and do not save or reinvest money to make the business
sustainable. Related to this is that they do not think about the maintaining of machinery. And at
last, as discussed above, it is not a primary motivation of the entrepreneur to earn profit. From a
Western point of view, this undermines the core principle of entrepreneurship: individual self-
esteem and autonomy.
Capital: All Papuan business owners will mention the lack of capital as their main problem. They
are constantly out of money and need to ask for new. It is sad that one of the reasons for this is
that they have become used to receiving money from the government or NGO’s. It even has come
so far that some entrepreneurs are only willing to participate in training if they will be supplied
with any expense for covering their participation. Other reasons are the difficulties with
bookkeeping, people do not know if they make a profit or a loss. Either way, they will still use
business money for private consumptions. And as discussed earlier, money is taken from the stock
or venture without payments, for gifts or social events. Besides, they are not saving money for the
Education: There are not many (good) schools in Wamena. For an academic education, people in
the Baliem area will have to go to Jayapura. Overall, the level of education in Papua is very low.
Even elementary education is expensive and it is not common for all the children to go to school.
Obviously, this has consequences for the economic standard of the small-scale businesses. It is not
surprisingly that Heidi Scheunemann mentions a lot of business knowledge and skills that
indigenous entrepreneurs are missing. If there is a lack of basic education, the foundation is
missing. This results in a lack of economic knowledge, marketing experience, administration
skills and management knowledge. The capacity of the financial help institutions is not sufficient.
These obstacles are more difficult to overcome, because they require a more intensive
training. It does show the importance of education and business school, because that is the
only way to advance this situation. Besides basic education, there is a need for training for
specific jobs, effective coaching and capacity building.
Transport: Transportation is difficult in Papua; there is not much good quality infrastructure.
Traveling is expensive and takes a lot of time. That hinders the business and the financial help as
Government policy: The policy of Transmigrasi and RESPEK, both cause problems for the
Papuans. They can not compete with the transmigrants, which mean that they are taking over the
economy. The amounts of money from the RESPEK program create dependency and a passive
stance. Moreover, the Papuans became the poorest population in Indonesia and even in Papua
itself. This gave them a very low self-esteem; they are starting to lose the faith that they are
capable of improving their situation. There is also a lot of corruption in Indonesia in general and
Papuan people are more affected hereby, because they also have to deal with discrimination and
These factors are also disturbing the entrepreneurs as well, but unfortunately much harder to
be tackled by NGO’s.
It was interesting to notice that most development supports coming from another culture,
mention the Papuan mindset and cultural elements as ‘adat’ ceremonies and the importance of
relationships. The Papuan people working for NGO’s were more talking about the
government policy, lack of infrastructure and education. Because of that, they were a lot more
hopeful and positive about the development process in Papua than the expats.
Chapter 5.: Micro credit
Before the seventies the word ‘micro credit’ did not even exist and now it has become a buzz-word among
the development practitioners.47
A micro credit is the most common microfinance product, it is usually
less than 100 US$. Microfinance emerged in the 1970s as social investors began to offer financial services
to the working poor. Hereby we mean those who were previously considered ‘un-bankable’ because of
their lack of collateral.48
The Grameen Bank in Bangladesh is considered the pioneer in this field. This
bank makes tiny loans for self-employment to some of the poorest people in that country. Professor
Muhammad Yunus is the founder of Grameen Bank in Bangladesh. In 2006 The Norwegian Nobel
Committee decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize, to Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank for their
efforts to create economic and social development from below. Yunus has, first and foremost through
Grameen Bank, developed micro credit into an ever more important instrument in the struggle against
The award gave an extra impulse to this kind of microfinance. Micro credit became increasingly
used as an effective tool for poverty alleviation throughout the world. Their program has been replicated
in both developed and underdeveloped countries.50
Soon it seemed to be proven that micro credit can have
an enormous success in other places a well. The repayment rates are high (globally above 95%) and
clients have been able to start or extend a business, enlarge their income and change their lives. It is a very
sustainable way of developmental work, because it does not create much dependency. It was a new
approach that created new hope in the struggle against poverty alleviation.51
The organization “Day for
Change”, an organization that stimulates microfinance, speaks high of it: “It is a way to make people able
to help themselves: there is no more effective way for developmental aid.”52
Banking for the poor – Grameenbank, What is microcredit,
<http://www.grameen-info.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=28&Itemid=108> (April 2010; last
consulted 10 May 2010)
Unitus Innovative Solutions to global poverty, Poverty and microfinance – Microfinance: an innovative solution
<http://www.unitus.com/sections/poverty/poverty_mf_main.asp> (last consulted on 21 June 2006)
Banking for the poor – Grameenbank, The Nobel Peace Price 2006
<http://www.grameen-info.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=7&Itemid=195> (last consulted on
10 May 2010)
Md. Rezaul Karim and Mitsue Osada, Dropping out: an emerging factor in the success of microredit-based poverty
alliation programs, 1-2.
Marc Klein Essink, Day for change, Oplossing 1 microkrediet/9 oplossingen,
<http://9oplossingen.nl/documents/9oplossingen/microkrediet.pdf.> (last consulted on 12 May 2010) 15.
General benefits from micro credit above ‘free money’ giving:
- Micro credit can create self-confidence for the client. Because he is capable of earning the money
back, he has created an improvement for the company on his own. He is less dependent.
- The providing of ‘free money’, on the other hand, can have a paralyzing effect. It can create
dependency and make people wait for the next gift.
- When the money has to go back, attention has to be given to how it can be invested in a profit
making way and how the business can gain from it.
- This can be a trigger to find out the best way to invest money and stimulate the company.
- The danger that the money goes somewhere it was not meant for is bigger when the money is a
- When the loan is repaid, the money can be reinvested of used for another microcredit.
Heidi Scheunemann also gives a list of reasons why she thinks HAPIN should start providing micro credit
in Wamena. These arguments are mentioned in figure 3 on page 12. If we take a closer look at the benefits
she gives, we can see that besides a few general benefits from micro credit, she mainly highlights
advances that come from training and coaching. In her plan for HAPIN she makes a connection between
training and micro credit. This raises the question whether providing more coaching and arranging that all
the small-scale businesses can participate in a financial training would be enough. Though, Scheunemann
describes that a lot of the entrepreneurs are not willing to have business training when this is offered and
some do not want to start using bookkeeping. For that reason micro credit could be a trigger.
Notwithstanding the general benefits, people are cautious whether micro credit will be a success
in the Papuan culture. Off course the best way to find this out is to see it in practice. In the previous
chapter the organizations that have a micro credit program in Wamena are described. These all have a
very different content, leading to different results. The financial help from the commercial sector is not
sufficient for the very poor. The results from Yasumat’s program in Ninia show one of the mentioned
benefits: it causes a better self-esteem and even respect for the women. The results from Oikonomos’
program show the importance of good analyzing the proposals and situation and the need of intensive
coaching and training. This creates hope, but these programs are small and new and therefore not
significant evidence to say whether micro credit will or will not work here. Besides, the developmental
practitioners were not very enthusiast, they also had strong doubts. The general obstacles for the economic
situation here, which can be roughly summarized as culture and lack of education, might hamper the
success of micro credit as well.
Therefore it would be useful to use a sort of checklist, to see whether the conditions are
appropriate or not. The Consultative Group to Assist the Poorest (CGAP) from the World Bank has made
such a list. The World Bank suggest to carefully evaluate the alternatives (and there are a lot) because in
many cases other services can be a more effective tool for poverty alleviation and employment generation.
According to them, micro credit in general is most appropriate where ongoing economic activity and
sufficient household cash flow already exist, so it can not create an extreme burden.53
This would not have
to be a problem in the Baliem Valley.
Figuur 4.: Conditions for micro credit, World Bank Donor Brief 2002
The situation in Papua is not that turbulent or comparable with any of the other hypothetic inappropriate
situations. But to fulfill the requirements to make it a success there is a long way to go, especially for a
small-scale NGO like HAPIN. Besides, other literate highlights the importance of savings for
Joanna Ledgerwood, Sustainable banking with the poor, Donor brief (1 April 2002) 3-4.
When is micro credit most appropriate?
Factors for success:
- Success requires both client discipline (timely payment) and institutional discipline (practices
that lead to sustainability) on the part of the microcredit program.
- Micro credit is best implemented as a professional banking activity by a strong, local
microcredit organization dedicated to operational self-sufficiently.
- Transforming a non-financial organization into a sustainable microfinance institution (MFI)
requires a substantial technical assistance and institutional development.
- Progress on performance should be monitored using clearly defined micro lending
When micro credit might be inappropriate:
- Microcredit may be inappropriate in immediate post-emergency environments, severely
disadvantaged rural areas, and as an intervention for the chronically destitute.
- Clients with debilitating illnesses (e.g., HIV/Aids) and extremely dispersed, highly mobile
and/or unstable populations are generally not suitable for microcredit programs.
- Micro credit recommended where there is dependence on a single economic activity and/or
barter transactions; high risk of civil violence, natural disaster or hyperinflation; or in the
absence of law and order.
- Micro credit in rarely sustainable environments where the regulatory environment creates
significant barriers to sustainability by, for example mandating interest rate caps or
prohibiting non-collateralized loans.
microfinance and that the MFI that provides micro credit should work as commercial as possible to offer
microfinance in a sustainable way.54
So the important question arises: is it wise for HAPIN to invest as
much as needed to be able to provide micro credit in a sustainable way in the Baliem Area?
Benefits for micro credit in the Baliem area:
- A few organizations are already providing microcredit. Their experience can be used. A few
others are thinking about starting with credits and there is also a lot going on about trainings. This
means that there is enough human capital to set up an MFI or cooperate to create a good working
system to provide micro credit.
- The Word Bank does not mention culture in any way as a possible insurmountable obstacle for
micro credit, neither does other literature.
Disadvantages of micro credit in the Baliem area:
- The results from the micro credit program are a lot less successful than the results globally.
However these programs are still young and small, so it is not fair to it see as proof for or against
the possibility of micro credit here. Nevertheless, is does show that it won’t be easy.
- If business owners are not able to repay the loan, the credit will lead to a debt burden.
- The way of living in the remote areas of Papuan can be compared with the Stone Age. The
concept of money is still relatively new here and the cultural concepts do not match with the
modern Western way of profit making. For example a lot of them own a business to fulfill one or
more specific purposes and when these are achieved the business ends. If this is the case then they
are not looking for an improvement of the business in the long term, which is the main purpose of
Kaas kuiper, Microkrediet: is de hype over? <http://viceversa.oneworld.nl/index.php?section=ViceVersa-
DeOpinie&articleId=14888> (last consulted on January 2009) ; Commercialization of microfinance: Indonesia
Chapter 6.: What should be done with the recommendation from Heidi
Scheunemann to start providing micro credit?
It appears to me that it is possible to set up a microfinance institution (MFI) in Wamena and provide micro
credit. It would however be a time consuming and labor intensive process, but there is enough capacity if
organizations are willing to cooperate. Then, it would be possible to create a structure in which
entrepreneurs can participate in business trainings, receive a credit and intensive coaching. in any case, it
is highly recommended that within the training and coaching there will be attention to the unique culture
of this population.
However, I think that at the moment HAPIN should not start with a micro credit-system, but it
would be wise to keep in mind that it is good to work towards it. Martinus O. Doga has just started as a
fieldworker and has to grow in his job. The small-scale businesses that are receiving support on the other
hand, are not ready to invest a credit in their business and repay the loan. There are other ways to improve
her work for HAPIN, which Heidi Scheunemann also mentions. If these will be implemented in the near
future HAPIN’s projects will become stronger and less dependent. After that it might be good for HAPIN
to become conversant with the ongoing microfinance activities in Wamena and see how she can construct
a partnership and become involved. When HAPIN has become stronger and the local entrepreneurs more
capable, micro credit would be the right direction.
Heidi Scheunemanns arguments for micro credit are mainly based on the successes of training.
Many development practitioners in Wamena agree that it would be best to give teaching to the
entrepreneurs if we want to help them in an effective way. Also, research done by the YPMD highlights
that they want to advise not to give any kind of financial help without training.55
It is not yet a naturalness
that the all HAPIN’S projects are receiving schooling, and it would be wise to take care of this, even if
HAPIN is not going to provide credits.
I believe there are quite a few possibilities for HAPIN to improve its policy that have to be done
either way before micro credit would be possible, but that are in itself already big steps in the right
direction. Focusing on these possibilities and the capacity of HAPIN in Wamena would be more
reasonable. Besides, the CGAP explains that grants are better than micro credit as a way to overcome
social isolation, lack of productive skills and low self-confidence of the extreme poor preparing them for
eventual use of micro credit. Micro grants can work well as first steps in comprehensive programs
Simmons and Canglas, A study to identify methods/strategies that stimulate community development for Papuan
Communities in Jayapura Regency, YPMD, (June 2009)
designed to ‘graduate’ the poor from vulnerability to economic self-sufficiency.56
After analyzing a proposal and the situation of the business carefully, HAPIN can start with a
grant and intensive coaching to see what kind of training or other services are needed. When the
entrepreneur develops his business in a fruitful way and needs a small amount of money, HAPIN can see
if it can be facilitated by another institution.
If HAPIN is, in a more distant future, going to provide micro credit, I would suggest not doing it
all alone as described in Scheunemann’s report. There are possibilities to create partnerships or in some
way with other organizations. Thereby it can be done in a more effective and sustainable way. Besides, as
I mentioned in the overview of the NGO’s and financial institutions, there are already quite a lot of MFI’s
and microfinance activities going on. I believe it would be better to contribute to one of these, than to
establish a new MFI.
I do believe it would be wise for HAPIN to take the other recommendations Scheunemann makes,
serious. She highlights the problems of HAPIN’s projects clearly with a good eye for the cultural
influences. For sustainable development aid these factors should receive much attention.
Joanna Ledgerwood, Sustainable banking with the poor, Donor brief (1 April 2002) 3-4.
Chapter 7.: Recommendations for HAPIN:
Coaching en monitoring: HAPIN’s success in Wamena lies in the dedicated coaching of the fieldworkers.
I would suggest extending this and making it a specialization. Thereby the organizations would not make a
width investment but a depth investment. If there would be more fieldworkers it would be possible to visit
the business owners more often. With more coaching it will be possible to notice the needs of the
entrepreneurs better and help them find specialized assistance from others. If HAPIN would extend the
work she is currently doing in Wamena into a coaching and monitoring system, I think it will distinguish
her selves. I believe there is a need for more coaching and monitoring. Visiting the people frequently,
analyzing the situation, finding out the needs and appropriate assistance, can contribute a lot to the local
development and make sure it goes in a sustainable way suitable to the culture. HAPIN can become a sort
of intermediary and bring the people in contact with the right institutions. Besides, frequently visiting is
very much appreciated. Thereby it will intensify the relationships which obviously are an important tool in
Training: It is highly recommended for HAPIN to arrange business training for all the business owners
and other projects that she is supporting. All of the entrepreneurs have to at least understand the basics of
profit making; otherwise the financial help will be a lot less helpful and probably go to unintended
consumption. If the business owners will work with bookkeeping they will have a much better overview
of the state of affairs of the business, and it will be much easier for HAPIN to see what goes right and
what goes wrong. There are enough organizations supplying different kinds of educations, so HAPIN
would not need to attract new employees to offer these trainings her selves. Since there is already some
sort of cooperation between HAPIN and Oikonomos I would suggest to intensify this.
Communication and Cooperation: As a small-scale organization, I think HAPIN can gain a lot by working
together with the other NGOs. This starts with creating awareness about the organization, right now
HAPIN is not very well known. Both HAPIN and the partners can benefit from more cooperation. HAPIN
can focus more on (one) specific area(s) and there will be less duplication. On top of that, the exchange of
information and lessons learned can only bring much good to the development of Papua. NGO’s like
Worldvision, Yakpesmi and Yasumat more or less share HAPIN’s mission to improve the wellness of the
indigenous population by (among others) advancing the economic development. These organizations all
mentioned that they are open to see if some sort of cooperation could be possible.
There already is some cooperation with Oikonomos, which I would suggest to clarify and intensify. If
Oikonomos is, as planned, establishing a credit union it can be interesting for HAPIN. There is no need to
help Oikonomos with the institutionalization and Oikonomos will start with only its own people. But as I
mentioned before, if the entrepreneurs helped by HAPIN strengthen, maybe these business owners can
become future members. Oikonomos is also interested in more cooperation.
Culture: I found it very sad to see how the situation of the Papuans deteriorates. Many people mention the
elements of the Papuan culture as the most important obstacle for the economy. This culture has very
unique aspects and we should be careful not to try to change it more than necessary. The Papuan culture is
one of the oldest and it would be really sad if it would get lost in the process of development.
Invest in fieldworkers: Martinus is not as experienced as Eligius, he does not have such a strong
personality as Eligius and since he is new he will have to earn the trust of the clients. He is very motivated
and has an unfinished academic education. I believe it would be wise to invest in him, make him a
stronger and more educated fieldworker before HAPIN changes anything of its policy. This will make him
more capable to analyze the needs of the clients, to coach properly and give the right support. If Martinus
could participate in one of Oikonomos’ business’ training and training in financial skills he would be more
helpful for the clients. Besides Oikonomos’ normal training programs they are currently training their staff
with the book: Nine distinctive characters of effective leadership by Steven Covey. It would be interesting
if Martinus could participate in that.
Alumni organization: Last but not least, I would recommend to organize an alumni organization for all the
students that have been supplied with a scholarship. There is a lack of human capital in Wamena, many
educated people move to Jayapura and the NGO’s are loosing people on government jobs. There is a need
for people that are familiar with the struggles of Papua and enthusiastic to contribute to the Papuan
development. An Alumni organization from HAPIN’s students would be an interesting network that might
be able to offer knowledge and qualified development practitioners.
I made an overview of all the non-governmental organizations, active in Wamena that I found. In this
database you can see a short description of these NGO’s, their address and contact information. If you are
interested in this overview please contact HAPIN, firstname.lastname@example.org.