Filming for Kiva, Indonesia TAKE FOUR
Filming on the road leading up to Paulos' home. Photo credit: Yungkit

Area by Paulos's home. Photo credit: Yungkit
The second student that really caught Kiva's attention was Paulos. Ron, a fellow Kiva ...err...Fellow who is also currently working in Southeast Asia had met Paulos about a month ago and recommended that we interview him. Paulos lives about 8km away from his school - because of the distance and terrain, it takes him almost an hour to get to school each day by bike. 
Filming Paulos heading to school. Photo credit: Yungkit

Paulos with his bike headed to school. Photo credit: Yungkit
Since Paulos was about 90 minutes away from us, we all had to get up at 4am to make it to his home in time for his morning commute. Just before filming his journey to school, we went to his village to meet his parents and see his home. It was in a very isolated part of Cilacap, near the very end of the village. His home was simple and built with a straw roof and mud floor. 
Paulos' home. Photo credit: Yungkit

Right next to their home was their make-shift barn with ducks and goats. Both the ducks and goats ran freely through their home, "quack"-ing and "bahh"ing where they pleased.
Paulos' father tending to the animals. Photo credit: Yungkit

Animals roam free. Photo credit: Yungkit
Even though they did not have much, they still offered us tea and snacks for our visit. Indonesian people are very big on hospitality for their guests - and this family was very hospitable towards us. Inside their home, there was one and a half bedrooms - one of which was also the living room and eating area.
Paulos' father and I inside their home. Photo credit: Yungkit

Paulos and his family inside their home. One of the two bedrooms. Photo credit: Yungkit

Paulos shared his home with his parents and two younger siblings - although Paulos had the opportunity to live closer to school, his family needed him to stay to help take care of their farm animals and children. His parents are extremely proud of him - for wanting to continue his education and finding a way to do it. It was heartbreaking when we spoke to his parents - because they blamed themselves for the situation they put their kids in. Like all other parents, they just wanted the best for their children, and they were so happy that Paulos had the opportunity for a better life because of this loan. 
Hard at work. Photo credit: Yungkit
Paulos and Arda during the interview. Photo credit: Yungkit
During the interview we learned a bit about Paulos and his ingenuity. He borrowed money to purchase some cookies from the market along with some nicer packaging. He repacked the cookies that he purchased and sold them to his teachers and neighbors. He was able to make enough of a profit to purchase some ducks and a goat for the family. Smart kid.
We were laughing about how much larger I am than Christina. Haha. Photo credit: Yungkit

She still likes me though :) Photo credit: Teresa Yung
While filming around their home, Paulos' mother's friend came to visit and chat for a bit. Paulos' mother said that they were like kindred spirits, experiencing similar hardships but appreciating the life that they have nonetheless. With Christina translating, we were able to talk about how important a single opportunity is, and that when presented with an opportunity, they would never squander it because another chance might not ever come up again. Although they themselves did not have these chances in their lives, they hope that their children can take advantage of it and strive for a better future.
Paulos' mom and her best friend who came to visit. Photo credit: Yungkit

They live a simple life but are very content and cherish their friendship. Photo credit: Yungkit

She loved the photos we took. Photo credit: Yungkit
After meeting his family, we set off to school, filming Paulos on his bike. The things I do to get a good shot....
Filming out the window. A skill. Photo credit: Yungkit
Paulos rode his bike behind the SUV - I filmed from the back of the SUV while Arda held the door open (no easy task). Paulos was an awesome sport about it and we made our way to his school.
Practicing for a scene. Photo credit: Yungkit
Upon arrival, Paulos headed to his computer class where they were learning to use Microsoft word. We were able to get the teacher to take part in a scene with Paulos, at the expense of having his students tease him about it.
Paulos' computer class. Better than the computers I had in high school. Photo credit: Yungkit

The height difference is hilarious! Photo credit: Yungkit

So apparently, I can be annoying sometimes. Photo credit: Yungkit
We got all the footage we needed for Paulos and he headed to his next class. As we were leaving, I wanted to take some shots of the hallway and somehow I developed a small fan-base of students behind me. I had screaming teenage fans all around me - kind of felt like a celebrity! Not wanting to be too disruptive, we finished up the shot quickly and left the school. Yungkit, Christina, and Arda were laughing their butts off the entire time.
New fan base. Photo credit: Yungkit

I encountered a class of girls wanting a photo. Yungkit insisted. Photo credit: Yungkit

Arda and Christina exhausted from a hard day's work. Photo credit: Yungkit
Today was one of the best shoots I've had on this trip so far -- I couldn't be happier with the bike footage we got and I know that Paulos' profile is going to turn out great. Similar to Tedi's profile (Filming for Kiva, Indonesia TakE THREE), I hope that this blog post and the video I create will bring more awareness to the students around the world in need of educational loans. They want to learn and obtain skills for a better life, not just for them but for their families. Paulos wants to be successful so that his elderly parents no longer have to suffer back-breaking labor or need to beg in the streets when the harvest season is over. He's a really good kid and I hope that he achieves his goals in the future. 
Confident Paulos strutting the school hall.Photo credit: Mike Mazur
Paulos has the confidence and the tenacity to succed and I have no doubt that he will.
The family was great to work with! And I look like a giant. Photo credit: Yungkit

About the author

Mike Mazur

After many years working as a producer and director at a Manhattan creative agency, Michael decided to make a change and put his skill-set to use creating meaningful content for causes he believed in. While in Guatemala on a video shoot, he had a chance encounter with a Kiva Fellow that resulted in a successful experience producing videos for Kiva's Women-Owned Businesses initiative. He profiled indigenous women and their businesses around Lake Atitlan and produced a best practices video for the local field partner, Friendship Bridge. These experiences in Central America helped him grow as a filmmaker and instilled a newfound desire to apply his craft telling the stories of the people around the world who have used microfinancing to change their lives. Michael is elated to be continuing his work with Kiva in Southeast Asia this fall. He will be tackling a new Media Fellowship, searching for the borrowers that best exemplify the power of Kiva to give people the resources to lift themselves out of poverty. This Kiva Fellowship is Michael's calling and was the opportunity he was looking for to make a difference.