It is with great pleasure that we introduce to you for the first time the National Australia Indonesia Language Awards (NAILA).
NAILA is an initiative of the Australia-Indonesia Youth Association (AIYA) that aims to reward and foster the development of Indonesian language learning in Australia at all levels.
As Indonesian language classes continue to decline in Australia, NAILA hopes to incentivise language learning and reward high-level proficiency to encourage deeper communication, respect and understanding between our two nations.
Primary school students through to executive level speakers have participated in a national speech competition carried out in several stages, culminating with a national awards ceremony in Melbourne.
In our inaugural year, we received 70 high quality applications from across all states and territories of Australia, as well as from Australians residing in Indonesia. Entrants ranged from 7 years old to 45 years old and presented on a broad range of issues including the bilateral relationship and Australian history.
Our rural communities were well represented including entries from Manjimup in Western Australia and the Whitsundays in Queensland. It was great to see those studying the language by distance education also take part in NAILA 2015.
NAILA is the first language competition of its kind in Australia – bringing together speakers of all different age levels and backgrounds to enable them to learn, network and mentor one another.
In order to benefit from the Australia-Indonesia relationship it is imperative for us to develop a deeper understanding of the way that Indonesian society and business operates and establish a cultural rapport beyond the books; language proficiency and cultural awareness are crucial to achieving this.
Our perspectives of one another, individually and as nations, greatly affect our ability to work together to overcome shared problems and achieve greater prosperity.
By encouraging Australians to gain technical proficiency in Indonesian, we hope to break down stereotypes, foster close friendships and demonstrate our willingness to ‘meet in the middle’ in forging stronger ties with out nearest neighbour.
We are incredibly grateful to all of our sponsors for their support, and are extremely proud of each and every applicant in our 2015 competition, without them NAILA would not be possible.
Next year NAILA hopes to expand its existing categories and also run an equivalent competition for native Indonesian speakers.
We look forward to bringing you a new and improved NAILA in 2016!
Founder and Director