The Building Relations through Intercultural Dialogue and Growing Engagement (BRIDGE) Program is a flagship program of the Australia-Indonesia Institute and delivered by the Asia Education Foundation. It has operated since 2008.
The BRIDGE Program is an innovative education program that funds visits by Indonesian teachers to Australian schools and supports the development of school e-twinning and an online collaborative curriculum strategy between Australian and Indonesian schools.
As at May 2019, the program has established 189 Australia-Indonesia school partnerships and has involved 780 Australian and Indonesian teachers.
Program outcomes include the development of professional and personal relationships between Australian and Indonesian teachers, collaboration between students in Indonesia and Australia using online tools, and the creation of partnership Wikispaces to share student work.
BRIDGE recognises that intercultural understanding is essential to equip young people to live and work successfully in the 21st century as responsible local and global citizens. The program supports students to develop intercultural understanding, and to develop teaching skills and capacities to equip them to undertake this work in schools.
The objectives of the Australia-Indonesia BRIDGE Program are to:
- create and support school-to-school partnerships
- improve the intercultural knowledge and skills of participants
- improve the ICT knowledge and skills of participants
- build professional knowledge and skills, including strategies of effective teaching practice, among participant teaching staff
- provide particular support to developing basic education program schools in Indonesia.
In 2018, the Australia-Indonesia BRIDGE Program celebrated its 10 year anniversary.