Building hope in Indonesia• Global Village 12384       • 2 simple, strong houses for 2 homeless families      • 21 volunte...
Building houses for the poor in my birthplace    Indonesia was something that I had wanted    to do for a long time. In Fe...
IMMERSING INTO THE LOCAL CULTURE                            Personally, the most moving moment was when we had  Born and r...
GV12384 Team Leaders, Neale Kemp andHeather McIlhany, posing with the completedhouse and the new happy owner, pak Nengah.
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Building hope in Indonesia

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Building hope in Indonesia

  1. 1. Building hope in Indonesia• Global Village 12384 • 2 simple, strong houses for 2 homeless families • 21 volunteers from• February - March 2012 • 200 students in 1 local public school 10 countries• Git Git, Bali, Indonesia • clean water infrastructures for up to 100-families • 30 generous donors
  2. 2. Building houses for the poor in my birthplace Indonesia was something that I had wanted to do for a long time. In Feb 2012, the three- year wait was finally over when I joined 20 other volunteers from nine countries for a two-week journey that eventually changed the lives of two families in the most fundamental way. We collaborated with the locals, immersed ourselves in their culture and inspired them, particularly the young ones, of the brighter future that lies ahead. It truly was the experience of a lifetime... Growing up in Indonesia and having survived a bloody uprising in 1998, I understand the frustration of the poor who lack basic infrastructure, such as housing, to live a decent life. Hearing about Habitat for Humanity for the first time in 2009, I instantly thought of organising a team for a build in the country. Unfortunately, at the time, I had neither the experience nor construction expertise to lead, so I decided to join Neale’s and Heather’s team in Malaysia, where I had a time of my life! The moment I heard of this trip in late 2011, I signed up right away, knowing that I will build with seasoned Habitat volunteers in a country that means so much to me. GIVING SHELTERS FOR TWO FAMILIES IN DIRE NEED Upon my arrival in Bali, I was amazed to meet such When one thinks of Bali, one will imagine an island a diverse team of 21 volunteers from 9 countries. paradise with beautiful beaches and tourist attractions. With backgrounds covering business – large and That, unfortunately, is not the case with the villagers of small, academics, government, non-profit and skills Goblek where we did our build for the two-week period. such as rocket science, marketing, management, The village is located at the northern, mountainous area of investment banking, biological science, project Bali where villagers do not have the same access to management, consulting, carpentry and arts, I opportunities as their counterparts from the coastal areas knew I would have an incredible time! In addition, do. Not only are they so isolated from the other Balinese, this would be different to the last one, because it’s they also struggles to get access to basic needs, such as in my birthplace. Everything looked familiar but I clean water - 3 km hike up and down the mountain with wasn’t in holiday mood - I was there to make a buckets of water is a daily routine for these people. difference. When we arrived at the build site for the first time, we were greeted by friendly locals who were very keen to work with us in the next 2 weeks. At 1,000 m above sea-level, I was pleasantly surprised to find the significantly milder temperature than that of Malaysia and the breathtaking scenery. We quickly split ourselves into two teams and started our work with our beneficiaries, Sukiasa and Budiarta families, as well as local workers and kids! We dug trenches and septic tanks, laid foundations, erected walls and installed the tin roofs together with these heartwarming people. At the end of the two weeks, not only did we give Goblek village and the two families two strong houses, some artists in the team also managed to decorate the interiors with stylish colours and patterns! Neale Kemp Australia Andy Culley USA Hal Taylor USA Heather McIlhany USA Sarvin Haghighi Iran Danielle Eely Canada Jacquiline Johnson USA Amy Mai USA/China Scott Voysey Canada Emily Kenny USA John Riccardi USA Maureen Malley Canada Laura Schrage USA/Germany Australia/ Rita McCaffrey USA Will Edwards Matt Hodgson Canada Singapore Mohsen Kazma Dubai Rima Sirhan Palestine Australia/ Aswin Andrison Andre Ruoti USA Indonesia Michael Feinglass USACopyright © 2012 by Aswin Andrison Page 1
  3. 3. IMMERSING INTO THE LOCAL CULTURE Personally, the most moving moment was when we had Born and raised in Indonesia, I speak Bahasa Indonesia our closing ceremony at the build site. Pak Nengah fluently. This came in handy when we interacted with Sukiasa, one of the two beneficiaries, emotionally said the locals and I did everything I could help my team to us “We are really grateful for your generosity, working mates learn some Indonesian words. When they very hard with us and providing us with beautiful homes. learned some words, some of them were cheeky Finally, we have roofs to shelter us at night and the enough to combine words into meaningless, but children no longer need to be drenched from the hilarious-sounding phrases, which helped breaking the monsoon rain. All of these are possible because of each ice and built intimate relationships with the locals. and every one of you. If you happen to come back to Bali one day, please, please visit us again here in In addition to learning the language, my teammates Goblek! We will welcome you with open hearts…” immersed themselves into the local cultures by visiting a local cultural show in which we played the traditional Hearing these sincere words, I thought I did quite well to instrument, gamelan, and danced energetically with the successfully hold my tears. But when the local builders, locals! Whilst I was familiar with gamelan and Balinese whom I talked to afterwards, told me that I was the first dance, I was struck by the energy and cheerfulness of Indonesian-born volunteer to ever participate in their the musicians and dancers - we really had a wonderful many builds and that I have set an example for many time! others to follow, I was extremely humbled and tears started running down my cheeks. There are heroes in this world. Some fought in battles and brought back victories. Others fed the poor and liberated the oppressed from tyrannies. Whilst my mates went to Bali not just to build houses but also to have a bit of fun and time off from their busy lives, they gave the beneficiaries homes - the most basic prerequisite for families to flourish. In addition, they have inspired the locals to do the same if, one day, they are in a position to do so. With or without them realising, they have changed the lives of these people. They, undoubtedly, have become heroes in the eyes of these people and will be remembered for a long, long time. I personally have found more meanings in life and would like to sincerely thank my team leaders - Heather and Neale, team mates, donors and supporters for their unwavering support to make this incredible endeavour possible. DELIVERING PROFOUND IMPACTS Needless to say, the locals were extremely thankful of our work. Not only did we provide shelter for two needy families and spark the local economy by purchasing goods, such as raw materials, labours and food, we also got the children from the neighbourhood involved and became examples for them to always help others as much as they can. After playing multiple games of soccer and working closely with them at the build site, we also visited their school to make them aware of the world beyond their village. On a world map, we told them where we come from, how our home countries are like and what we do. The kids were amused to meet people with backgrounds beyond their imaginations! Hal, the rocket scientist who used to design space shuttles and work on multiple NASA launches, told them to work hard in his address. He said “If all of you study hard enough, the first astronauts to walk on the surface of planet Mars will be Bali was only the beginning of our work there. In the among you.” mountainous region of Goblek, water is scarce and the villagers need to walk at least for 3 km to collect water on daily basis, in addition to harvesting rain water with traditional equipment. Thanks to the generosity of my donors - we raised $2,400 in addition to the primary donations accumulated for the two houses. We are currently working with Habitat Bali to finance an upcoming project: installing fresh water and sanitation infrastructures for up to 100 families in the area.Copyright © 2012 by Aswin Andrison Page 2
  4. 4. GV12384 Team Leaders, Neale Kemp andHeather McIlhany, posing with the completedhouse and the new happy owner, pak Nengah.

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