Jacob Tanda received a Heroes for Indonesia award on Heroes’ Day, 10 November. Head of Mbatakapidu Village, Kota Waingapu District, East Sumba, West Nusa Tenggara Timur, Jacob was one of ten winners of this award, according to MNC, Indonesia’s largest TV network.
These heroes received awards from MNC for their dedication in their respective field. Jacob Tanda won his for fighting for food sovereignty in his village. This award was presented by a panel of judges including sociologist Imam Prasodjo and former Muhammadiyah chair, Ahmad Syafi’I Ma’arif.
Heroes for Indonesia are awards presented by MNC group, owner of RCTI, MNC TV and Gobal TV television stations and other broadcast media. The awards committee selected people from across Indonesia whose dedication is an inspiration to others. The awards include economics, social affairs and culture categories.
This achievement would not have been possible without the support of Koalisi Rakyat untuk Kedaulatan Pangan, VECO Indonesia advocacy partner. For the past five years, KRKP has been running the Desa Mandiri Pangan Desa Sejahtera (DMPDS) program, including in Mbatakapidu.
KRKP advocacy and network manager Said Abdullah said that Jacob deserved this award because this village head had managed to achieve food sovereignty in his village. Thanks to the hard work of Jacob and the villagers, Mbatakapidu now has food stores at three levels: in the fields, in the hamlets and in the village.
This food comes from their own village, and includes corn, sorghum and tubers. So, the people in the village no longer have to rely on food from outside the village because they are able to meet their own food needs.
According to Said, Jacob has been a driving force and visionary when it comes to food. He has achieved what he set out to do: to create food stores in the village.
“Through these food stores, Jacob also built solidarity among the villagers. Whether hungry or full; they do it together,” said Said.