Indonesia Mother’s Day – History – Activities

Who doesn’t know about Mother’s day? Yea Mother’s day is annually event and every country has their own way to celebrate it. The way they celebrate it is also affected by their culture, geographical condition, values and moral, and so on. So for now, we gonna talk about Mother’s day in Indonesia, which we know is very unique because Indonesia has lot culture and that what make it different from another countries. We will talk about Mother’s day history in Indonesia – how we celebrate it – habits in those day – and so on. Are you already curious? So lets start it from the history!

Read also:


Dec 22 always be important date for Indonesian women’s activist which is also the marked of the beginning their political and the cultural struggle to achieve positively. When a group of pioneering woman gathered together in 1928, this also become first congress of Indonesian women in Yogyakarta. This congress has two main goals which are improve women’s role in society also support the independence movement.

The women continue the congress for the third time in Bandung, 1938 also become milestone for Country’s Women Movement and its also the first day of Mother’s day which published. In 1959, President Sukarno declared Dec, 22 as national day to honor Indonesian women. But it changed after Soeharto become while Dec,22 considered as women’s movement day (Hari Ibu) and it was not limited to motherhood. Indonesia Mother’s day originally intended to celebrate the spirit of Indonesian women and during the new order (President Soeharto era).

Read also:

The holiday was used by government propaganda to convince Indonesia women if they should stay at home and be deckle. Its also become government propaganda during President Soeharto’s new order (1965-1998). Use this Mother’s of Kartini day to calculate into women the idea that they should docile and stay at home. The holiday was used by government propaganda to convince Indonesia women if they should stay at home and be deckle. Its also become government propaganda during President Soeharto’s new order (1965-1998). Use this Mother’s of Kartini day to calculate into women the idea that they should docile and stay at home.

Read also: Kartini Day Celebrations

Based on the ancient Greeks and Romans, who hold the festivals in honor of Mother God dresses Rhea and Cybele also the clearest modern precedent for Mother’s day is the early Christian festival known as “Mothering Sunday”. The major tradition held for the first time its in United Kingdom and as part of the Europe also this celebration fell on 4th Sunday and was originally seen as a time when the faithful would return to their Mother Church, the main church in their vicinity of their home for a special offer service. Beside in still time to go on and until now, the mothering Sunday traditions shifted into more secular holiday and children would present their mothers with flowers or another sweet things which show their appreciation for their mothers. This custom eventually faded in popularity before merging in American nirges day in 1930 and 1940’s.

Read also:

Some stories say that people would return for their mother church, the chruch that they were baptized in or attended services in when they were children, and this would bring together communities who hadn’t seen each other for while. By 1911, Mother’s day was celebrated in almost every United States of America part and on May, 8, 1914 – President Woodow Wilson signed a joint resolution document that confirmed every second Sunday on May as Mother’s day.


Although now a days not everyone really knows the history behind the day and whether or not the meaning has slightly shifted, the importance of the day is about mother who human beings trying to contribute into society. Recently, WEF (World Economic Forums) Global Gap Gender report Indonesia ranks 88th out of 144 countries studied in. In ASEAN region, Indonesia is behind Philippines, Laos, Singapore, Vietnam, and Thailand. To be fact, no country in this world has achieved gender quality, not even Iceland which in the first top with as score of 0,874.

Mother’s day in Indonesia is not just for mothers but also for all women. Women empowerment and child protection, Yohana Yembise also explained how the come memo-ration of the Mother’s day in Indonesia is different from how its observed in another countries around the world. Mother’s day also commemorated every year in remembrance and appreciation of the struggle Indonesian women to win independence from the hands of colonialism. Yohana said if Mother’s day in Indonesia is linked to the determination, future goals, and the spirit of unity of the women to achieve independence and ensure Indonesia is safe, calm, peaceful, juicy, and prosperous country.

Read also:

Mother’s day in Indonesia also become mark the very long struggle of women in achieving  equality with men as potential resources in determining the success of development. Momentum of Mother’s day also used for reflection with contemplation about efforts made to advance the women movements in all areas of development. The Mother’s day, being observed for 88 years has led Global multi dimensional challenges, especially when it comes to struggle for gender equality in Indonesia. Mother’s day every year is to expected to encourage all stakeholders to pay attention to and recognize the importance of women in various development factors. However, the celebration of festival as it is seen today is recent phenomenon and not even hundred years ago.

Ritual in Indonesia Mother’s day

Mother’s day celebration is also celebratic in various days in many parts of the world, but must commonly is in the months of March or May. Flowers has been popular way to celebrate the Mother’s day in some part of the world, which this part come from United States of America. Indonesia also adapted flower as the main gift in Mother’s day as an expression of love also gratitude for their mothers or another women. Indonesia usually celebrate this Mother’s day with make surprises parties and cooking competition which the gift is flower.

Read also:

Beside we can give a bouquet flowers to our mother in Mother’s day, we also can meet some unique traditions from Indonesia about traditional ritual they would have. For example, in the North Sumatra the Mother’s day is commemorated by washing mother’s feet because theres popular proverb familiar to Indonesian words which say that “Heaven is beneath mother’s foot”. This foots washing including air mata (tears), sedu sedan (sobs), and all of this come from mothers and children.

It would be different when we get back to Java, exactly in Central Java, Sragen, when the Mother’s day is filled up with traditional competition of various games. The children which participate in the competition from child until teenager and there’s also some committee that decide the winners to get some prizes and this made up from mother.

There’s also some game which including team work between mom and their children such as strap wooden boards to their feet so can walk together, and so on. The main goal of this event is to foster feelings of closeness between mother and child through mutual cooperation.


Like we said before, Google Doodle also show their appreciation to our Mother’s day every time, like what they did last year. The picture show us how importance the relationship between mother and their child and it showed by their clothes, and isn’t only that. So, what google more did for us? Yup you right, google provide us with so many information about how Indonesian people celebrate their Mother’s day which in Indonesian and English version.

Not only that, google also provide us with some special greetings in Indonesian and English version so we can give those quotes to our mother to show our respect and love for them. Beside that, we also can choose the greetings for Indonesian or English version so we can choose which one is the best also we know which one is more suitable for our mother. Not only google, there’s also some hospital which make charity for cancer so we can avoid those disease happen especially for women. There’s some cancer who always happen to women, such as breast, liver, lung, and so on.

There’s also some seminar which also give us so much information about cancer. Indonesian greeting about Mother’s day is bit different with another country which is we can always say those greetings to another women or mother who already has child, which is bit different with tradition in another countries. And what they do with Mother’s day greeting in another countries? In another countries, we only can say Mother’s day greeting to someone who already really have kids – whether they just only married. We also only can say this to our relatives or truly or mother because another its sounds strange when receive this from people who don’t know us before or we don’t know nothing about them.

Read also:

Indonesia Mother’s Day Nowadays

Mother’s day is celebration honoring the mother of the family as well as mother hood, maternal bonds, and the influence of Mothers in society. No matter how much we respect our mother everyday for their unconditional love and care, this particular day purely dedicated to make our mothers feel special also valved. In fact, Indonesian Mother’s day is not just for mothers but for entire women community. Mother day also referred as “Hari Ibu” in the Indonesian language and this day aimed to celebrate the spirit of Indonesian women also improve the condition of our nation.

Present day, Mother’s day celebrations often involve vendors, like restaurants offering discount for mothers, coffee shops, department store, etc. Another offerings is like Uber who give away special gifts for mother for free, Google Indonesia which displaying a theme-specific doodle of Mother’s day like in 2014 and 2015 and so on. Mother’s day also focused on how people expressing their love and gratitude to mothers. In this day, Indonesian mothers usually received a present from their family or relatives. Mother’s day in Indonesia isnt only dedicated to Indonesian women but also in April, 21 which Indonesia celebrate Kartini day as memory of Raden Ajeng Kartini, the first Indonesian feminist and women right activist.

Beside that, Hari Ibu is only about one-thing freedom and democracy of women which now emphasizes on urging power to women who are believed to build a stronger society in the future. Recently, its customary practice to send gifts, flowers, and greeting cards to mothers and women. Furthermore, many people hold surprise parties and competitions, like cooking or kebaya competition to rejoice women hood. Some people and companies also allow mothers to have day off from their hectic domestic responsibilities. Many seminars and meetings also organized in this day, which celebrate women’s development in the modern world and women’s empowerment.

Read also:

And that’s all we know about Indonesia Mother’s Day which really different from another countries to celebrate that day. Really unique and interesting, right? Of course that also because the much cultures and values which Indonesia have. You also can experience this day in the exactly date when Mother’s Day is on going. So, Indonesia is really one of beautiful country and rich cultures, right?