Providing love to children without families
Bali, the beautiful island in Indonesia is not only an affordable luxury holiday destination with stunning beaches. The population living on the island is facing same kind of social problems and harms that everyone else around the world does. There are happy families, and there are broken families. There are children with brothers and sisters, there are children living without mother or father – or both.
Some children have parents but they cannot afford to sustain life for the children, and the children get abandoned. Tommy and Sandra are replacing the essential parent’s role in lives of many children from these kind of backgrounds. They are running a Balinese orphanage called Seeds of Hope, and provide love and security for almost 60 children without families.
Love and guiding
The Seeds of Hope (SoH) was founded in March 2001 and it´s located in north-west of Denpasar, Bali. The place is a home for children aged from 3 up to 21 years old. These children are going to school and doing the daily tasks like cooking and cleaning by themselves. There´s no staff working for the orphanage; the place is more like a large family unit.
In July 2016 there were 67 children living at the Seeds of Hope. By September same year, 12 of them have graduated and found a good jobs, which means that they get to move on, and are able to live independent life now. And this is what Sandra and Tommy are really proud about. They want to teach the children the importance of education and skills for independent life for the future. You don´t have to observe the life at the orphanage for a long time until you can see and feel how everyone respects each other.
Sandra (in the wheelchair) as a oma (grandmother in Javanese language) and Tommy as (on left) an opa (grandfather in Javanese) for all the children. Asia Exchange students are listening to what Sandra has to say.
Giving back joy
Every semester, we visit the children´s home the exchange students. As the students are enjoying the study semester in paradise, we’re trying to encourage them to visit Seeds of Hope and give a little bit of their time to the children. This is a good opportunity for the students to give back for all the joy they get to experience on the island. This time one hundred of the students visited and played with the children. Seeds of Hope can welcome only maximum 60 people at once, and that´s why the visits were done in two parts. Seeing how many students were interested of visiting the place, meeting the children, and spending time with them warmed our hearts!
First the heart was only warmed. When the children sang “You raise me up” and another song they had been practicing, the heart was melted. The beautiful performance was followed by a sing-along – ‘Love yourself’ by Justin Bieber was popular among the children. Girls liked to play musical chairs while the boys were more excited of basketball and other sports. They were also happy to show around their rooms and living areas. The children loved to be in a photo and then see the picture of themselves. The visit was full of love, laugh and hugging.
The Seeds of Hopes work is not supported by government. To be able to send the children to school and give them food every day is fully depending on donations. Asia Exchange and our sister company Study Advisory really appreciate the work what Sandra and Tommy are doing for the children, and as an expression of this the companies made a donation of 4 million rupiahs (270 euros) for Seeds of Hope.
Harri and Helka presenting a donation to Seeds of Hope from Asia Exchange and Study Advisory .
Would you like to spend an afternoon with the SoH children?
Everyone is warmly welcome to visit the children´s home. Would you like to play games and sing together with the children? Some of the children can speak English and they love learning more. You can teach them English, or practice your Indonesian with them! It does not really matter what you do, but the time spent with the children is really meaningful for them!
If you would like to visit Seeds of Hope, please contact Sandra in advance (contact details on their website) – to make sure the time is suitable for them.
Asia Exchange wants to thank you the Seeds of Hope for the visits and is looking forward for the next one!
Asia Exchange is a Finnish company providing study abroad opportunities in Asia Pacific for students from all around the world. Want to get travel tips and new blog posts straight to your inbox? Subscribe to our monthly newsletter! If you have any questions about studying abroad, feel free to contact us! We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.