Minggu, 05 Maret 2017

Hijrah Saputra, Introducing an Empowering Hospitality

Hijrah Saputra and Mister Piyoh

Born and raised in sabang, the city at the western end of indonesia, Hijrah Saputra (32) was intrigued by the untapped tourism potentials in his hometown. the combination of the things he is interested in; graphic designing, marketing, and his academic background in urban planning, encourage him to promote positive change among local youth. Hijrah, or Heiji to his friends, began his mission in 2008 by building piyoh design, his graphic design start-up focusing on creating merchandises to promote tourism in sabang.

Among his products are mugs, key chains, stickers, flannel figurines wearing aceh traditional dresses, and t-shirts. The name “Piyoh” is inspired by a word in Acehnese that means ‘stopping by’, representing the local tradition to honor guests called peumulia jamee. not only a fitting choice of word for tourists coming over, piyoh has also become a
household name. chances are, if one has a t-shirt that says “i love aceh” or “i love sabang”, it might be made by Piyoh Design. for the alumnus of Urban and Regional Planning Department in Brawijaya University, Malang, East Java, the numerous issues in his hometown were his drive to make the most of what he is made of.

“I see that people, with their own abilities, can change their surroundings for better or worse. I call it the power of supercitizen. As the power is combined, we can complete each other and collaborate as a driving force for a better Indonesia,” says Heiji, who believes that every single person has their own purpose in the world, and for him, it is to foster the improvements in his hometown.

as his initial drive to make changes started from tourism, the son of Suradji Junus and Erwani Meutia stays true to the cause. since last october, he is serving at Laskar Nusantara as the coordinator for indonesia tourism ambassadors for western part of the country, which comprises the region from aceh to west java. he also has been contributing and illustrating for travelwan magazine since 2009, and previously designed the promotional tools for visit banda aceh campaign in 2011 by the city of Banda Aceh’s department of tourism and culture.

Furthermore, along with his fellow youth in aceh, in 2012 Heiji co-founded a youth organization called The Leader, to encourage positive changes in local youth. its activities include Dreammaker, to inspire them to make their dreams come true; Kelas Kreatif and Rumah Kreatif to promote creative thinking and actions; Ngobrol Inspiratif to serve as a hub for local youth and inspirational people; Sobat Buku to recommend must-read books for youth; and Aceh Luar Biasa to introduce inspirational young people who had made a difference.

On the other hand, he admits, the fact that plenty of young people in Aceh choose to complain about their surrounding without actually make any moves, made his ideas did not gain that much of support from even his friends. However, he is glad that, one of these days, some of his peers, who used to consider his thoughts to be pretty obscure, now wonder why they are not invited to contribute.

“I consider this as a positive change of mindset, because if they ask that, it shows that they care and are willing to make change. Many of them are also inspired to do social projects and offer their own version of solution for problems in the society,” explains Heiji, who earlier 2015 won the first prize for the Creative Economy sector of Marketeers of the Year by Markplus.

Over the years, Heiji has been leaving his mark as a changemaker in his hometown, and he intends to keep on doing so and not to stop learning new things. In ten years’ time, he hopes to be an entrepreneur who is not only successful in building his business empire, but also to be a man of value to inspire young people across the sea to be their own version of change-makers.

Finally, he highlights, that “It is not the time to make a change on our own, but to do so together.”

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