Long time ago, Esperanto has been in Indonesia. Back to early of 1920 up to Indonesia independence an around 1965. At that period, Esperanto movement was growing rapidly, and become a popular language under the leadership of Mrs. Rankajo Chailan Sjamsoe Datoe Toemenggoeng. She found Asosiasi Esperanto Indonesia on 1952 in Jakarta.
History kept a record that the association was able to conducted the first Indonesia Esperanto Conference in 1960. From the birth of association, it gives a lot of effort to improve the movement of Esperanto in Indonesia.
At that time, Mrs. Datoe Toemenggoeng was collaborating with colleagues to start Esperanto courses on around cities such as Jakarta, Bandung, Yogyakarta, Magelang, Lubuk Linggau, Semarang, Malang, Denpasar, Waingapu and Makassar. There were a lot of Esperanto books, dictionaries, magazines and newspapers, such as “Indonezia Esperantisto” written by Mrs. Datoe Toemenggoeng, “Voĉo el Indonezio” was the official association bulletin, and so on.
In the record of history, there were few important names from the Esperanto movements, they were Liem Tjong Hie, Soen Kiat Liong, Hasan Basri and so on. They were actively wrote books and dictionaries.
On the 1965, Esperanto movement went slow due to a difficult political situation on all foreign-related activities. After Mrs. Datoe Toemenggoeng passed away, the movement were shut down. Unfortunately, most of major Esperanto remains were lost at this period, so did the Esperantist, and they lost their contact.
Long after Esperanto shut down period, in 2009 a Belgian women came to Indonesia, Heidi Goes. She conducted short Esperanto course in few cities such as Jakarto, Bogor, Yogyakarta, Surabaya and so on. During her visit in Indonesia, she made her chance to meet few veterans that was learned Esperanto.
After her first visit, she continued several revisits in 2010, 2012 and later 2013. Heidi Goes embrace Indonesian people from many cities to start a group or Esperanto Club.
The first club was “Esperiga Suno” in Jakarta, found on October 3, 2010 as it started a new period of Esperanto movement in Indonesia. After that, in Bandung there also an Esperanto group was found under the Asia Africa Museum guidance; also few clubs in other cities. Esperanto movement in Indonesia shows that more Indonesian interested in learning Esperanto, including to introduce it to the public.
In 2013 with the great favor from Melbourne Esperanto Association, and supported by generous foreign Esperantists, Indonesian was successfully conducted the first Esperanto Indonesia Congress on April 5-8 in Bogor. During 4 days of congress, 66 participants from Japan, Korea, Belgium, China, Australia, Finland, Timor Leste and Indonesia. The highlighted outcome from the congress was re-established the national association, Indonesia Esperanto Association or IEA.
Inumaru Fumio from Japan, So Gilsu from Korea, Heidi Goes from Belgium and Ilia Sumilfia Dewi from Indonesia wrote the Articles of Association and created an online forms. On April 7 evening, So Gilsu lead the meeting with 22 registered association member to verify the Articles of Association and form the new association.
Ilia Sumilfia Dewi from Jakarta was elected as the president, Endang Sabrina from Batam as general secretary and Eta Esperantina from Jakarta as treasurer. Other board members are Roga Pria Sembada (Malang), Andre Samosir (Yogyakarta) and Reza Pahlevi (Medan). Sasri Widaldini and Liola Asfrina elected as comptrollers.
On the first 3 years (2013-2016), Indonesia Esperanto Association focused as Information and Education agents. IEA is collaborating with clubs and Esperanto groups in other cities, build effective communication channels for Esperantist, working with medias and as a representative to grow the movements.
Beside that, it is important to work together with foreign Esperanto organisations, region and international. IEA will conduct the Three Countries Congress between Australia, Indonesia and New Zealand on March 2016 in Bandung, Indonesia.
According to UEA Commission Meeting that represents country-level representatives, on July 31, 2015 in the 100th Esperanto International Congress in Lille, France; IEA has been officially appointed as 12th Country-level Association. Therefore, all IEA members are automatically became UEA member.