Our fundraising efforts appear to have generated enough to cover the expenses of the launch as well as the costs of the Pulang Kampung expedition. Appearances, however, can be deceptive (as we all know).
The executive decision was made to pay all debts concerning the launch and this has been accomplished. This was a major concern because the funding going into the launch was insufficient and we had no resources to cover a possible deficit. We went into the launch filled with hope but definitely unwisely.
After the dust had settled and the accounts had been settled as well, it was evident that there was no money left for the Pulang Kampung expedition. There are still some outstanding promises from a few potential funders. If these come through, there will be 'just' enough, but then only on a minimum budget, to carry out the Pulang Kampung journey.
I need not dwell on my reactions to this news. Suffice it to say that there was enough money in the pot to get us to Medan and here we are. There are some things that we can do in Medan and at the very least, we can have some workshops with the youthful participants. We will go as far as the money will stretch.
And after that? Well, I can always re-book my flight and go home to The Netherlands earlier than planned, in the hopes that postponement will not mean the death of the project. I particularly fear dashing the hopes of the young people with us.
I have decided to look at the positive side of things:
The film and book, Rangsa ni Tonun, have been published and I am pleased with the result.
Our launch was not without its challenges but the result was wonderful.
Stephanie's textiles have been repatriated and a body to protect and promote Batak textiles will be erected.
We have been able to introduce solar energy to the youth, and we will continue to build on this theme during our ensuing workshops. They are excited about this.
The youth now all have cameras and are using them as well!
We were able to get our message across during the launch of Pulang Kampung III.
We were able to finally thank Pak Sudi Silalahi for his support in the past.
The more I write, the more I see that I could write about positive things. Nashir and I are both flexible and we go with the flow. We are innovative and don't shy away from a challenge. We shall do our best and see how things go.
...I hear that the forests being burned by people who want to turn them into plantations, have generated a heavy, ugly smog on the once brilliant Lake Toba....There are so many things at stake.