Along with our partners at Peduli Alam Foundation and the local NGO, Team Action Amed Foundation, we joined their weekly donation giveaway to Bunutan villagers in Amed back in May and July 2021. Amed is a well-known tourist destination in Karangasem District, Bangli Regency, about 82km or 2.5 hour-drive from the airport. It is adorned with black sand beaches, nice spots for snorkelling and diving, and picturesque rice fields and rolling green hills. The highest active volcano in Bali , Mount Agung, is also located in this region.
Ever since the global covid pandemic hit due to Bali’s heavy dependency on tourism, many of the locals find it hard to make ends meet. With no clear sign of the border opening, most of them have lost their livelihood, relying on friends, families and neighbours to support each other.
In the case of Bunutan villagers, even in normal conditions, the majority of them live in bamboo huts or small concrete houses of 3m x 4m, without basic amenities of running water, gas and electricity. There is always a water and rain shortage in the region and to get a water supply for daily household cleaning, the villagers must go uphill to a water filling station and pay a certain amount of money for the water jerrycans. Certain areas have water pipes running through their homes, but they are often dried out or poorly maintained (leaks). Gas for cooking is also not a common thing in their households as it is considered expensive so they resort to using fire wood that they collect themselves from the surrounding areas. However, electricity is still accessible in some of the houses which helps although they use it very minimally.
Out of the 80 villagers our project supported we made sure to get supplies to families with members who were elderly, had debilitating illness and families with low to zero-income. Combined with Peduli Alam Foundation and Team Action Amed Foundation’s weekly donation of basic needs (rice, eggs, vegetables, medicine, vitamins, etc), the staff of Bali Soap contributed a total of 546 items of their used clothes, shoes and sandals, as well as 275 soap bars, 200 hand sanitizers and 75 body butters worth Rp 8,035,000. In addition to that, we donated 80 instant noodles and 80 mosquito repelling coils as well as placed pump bottles of hand sanitizer in 4 local community centres. Furthermore, to all the 20-lovely staff of Peduli Alam Foundation’s waste recycling and upcycling station, we handed out goodie bags filled with our products as our token of gratitude for their noble work.