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The Voter’s Speakeasy featuring unbiased reporting and insight into life at Project Vote Smart from our staff, interns, and volunteers.

Indonesian Update #1

2007 August 06 - Media

Dear Vote-Smarters,

I've come to the end of my first official day here in Indonesia and I wanted to send everyone an update on what I have done so far. My first impression of Jakarta is that it is an incredibly diverse and vibrant city filled with a variety of sights, sounds and smells. I had the privilege today to meet with two different groups of politically active young people in Jakarta and nationwide. The first group you can see in the picture to above. It is Walhi, which is the leading environmental advocacy group in the entire country of Indonesia. It is staffed and run by young people from across the ethnic and geographic groups of the country and looks like a green version of Project Vote Smart. It was a pleasure to meet all these young people that are working very hard to get their fellow Indonesians to get politically active on environmental issues. Pollution and recycling were their biggest issues they are currently conducting campaigns on right now. One of their projects is turning product wrappers (candy bars, soap, etc.) into wallets, purses, and duffle bags and thus keeping plastic coated wrappers out of landfills.

The other group that I met with today was LSI or Lembaga Survei Indonesia, the country's only independent polling organization. I got a chance to have a very in-depth discussion with Saiful Mujani, the director of LSI, and his senior researchers about how LSI has developed its research capacity and media campaigns over the last ...

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