As a child, Raline recalled, she used to tag along with her parents anytime they were taking part in charity events. She shared her parents’ passion and would offer a helping hand whenever she could.
“My main concern is children’s issues, especially their health and education,” said the daughter of Rahmat Shah and Roseline Rahmat.
“The children will one day run this country. It is important to keep them safe and sound – both physically and mentally, as well as providing them with a better access to education.”
Born in Medan, North Sumatra, 28 years ago, Raline Rahmat Shah is known for her modeling and acting career.
The actress, whose film debut 5cm (Five Centimeters) became a box-office hit earlier this year, revealed that during her university years in Singapore, she often took part in charity events to help Indonesian children.
She recalled that they had a charity organization in university, which was called Misi Kami Peduli (We Care Mission), where they did some fundraising, the best thing they could do since they did not have much money at that time.
“We usually collected donation by organizing screenings of Indonesian movies and selling T-shirts. During the summer holidays, we would give English lessons to kids for free and paint their school buildings.”
After graduating, and busy with her working schedule in entertainment industry, Raline — who is currently preparing for her new film 99 Cahaya di Langit Eropa (99 Lights in the European Sky) — says, for her, time is a luxury.
“I don’t have much time now, with work and all, so I can’t do things I did in university.”
Deep down, she believes that good deeds can start from a small thing — and she starts by sharing something that she knows, English.
“I used to give [less fortunate] kids free English lessons, but I’ve got no time now. So, the best thing I can do is telling them that learning the language is important for their future,” she says.
(Courtesy of Raline Shah)
The winner of Putri Favorit (People’s Choice award) in 2008’s Putri Indonesia beauty pageant is aware the government has an established system in teaching English to children.
“I found that some kids do great in written English, but they are too shy to speak out. My role is just to be there when those kids need someone to have a conversation with in English.”
She loves children and learns a lot from them, which is one of the reasons why she joined the Three Little Angels charity group, allowing her to help and entertain ailing children.
Having been involved with the group for almost three years, she recalled one young girl living with bone cancer. She helped transfer her to another hospital to get better treatment.
“She’s just nine years old and she knows that she’s in a critical condition with no cure, but she always smiles at me and we laugh and she never complains,” Raline says.
“Then, it just hit me. I felt ashamed that I complained about little things. This girl, she’s in such pain, but she smiles and laughs. I really did learn a lot from her.”
Children make her happy since they are always grateful with what they have, she said, unlike most grownups who feel like they need to buy things to be happy.
Raline thinks that it is the adults’ job to keep the children safe, such as through education, which will allow them to filter things they get from their surroundings.
“We have to convince children they are entitled to have an opinion and they can choose what information they want to accept or don’t want to accept,” says the model of several beauty products and a brand ambassador for a hair treatment product.
Currently, she said she could not be more grateful, living her life as she wants it to be.
“What I do is what I love, which is fashion, beauty and meeting people,” she says. “It’s a blessing to be able to help myself and others.”