CRITTER STORIES…AND THEN ON TO A BUBBLY BATH


It struck us that we’ve been doing a LOT of projects that involve critters…mostly chickens, goats and pigs…so here’s a tour through these projects where critters are central. The overall aim of these projects is to provide sustainable income for poverty level families and communities. Wish us luck!

 

On the Oink Oink front the pigs in the Tista, Karangasem project are doing just fine and busily making new piglets. Half of each new litter of piglets are being passed on to other poverty level families in the area and so the distribution chain continues. With a little luck and a lot of piglets, dozens of families will have new sources of income. Thus far only one of our little piglets has met an early end…a little accident when Mama pig rolled over.

The pigs are only one of this multi-part project. Four poor families living in falling down hovels are getting new homes! Moving from dirt floors, leaking tin roofs, no kitchen and no toilet to simple but decent homes, beneficiary families are in bliss! And the John Fawcett Foundation checked the vision of the entire Tista population and distributed eye glasses and performed cataract surgeries where necessary.

With careful management of funds, this project appears likely to have a fund balance so it will be wonderful to think of something more that can be done to further aid more needy families.

We owe thanks to RCBS PE Erika, IPP Marie Francoise and a gaggle of RCBS members for their time and effort dedicated to this project. And of course thanks to our partners, RC Perth and their member Ray Della Polina, RC de Manosque in France, RC Bali Ubud Sunset and of course our own club who contributed to this project.

 

The bleating goats on the island of Nusa Penida continue to be healthy! We’re STILL hoping for more female kids to speed up breeding but the lone Billy Goat must have an oversupply of testosterone. The odds are still 2 for 1 with the boy kids leading. This is a great turnaround from our past experiences where no kids were being born and worse, goats were dying. Now the goats are being closely supervised by the Friends of the National Park Foundation and it shouldn’t be too long before kids will be distributed to local families and producing more goat progeny!

For this project we owe thanks to RCBS Rotarian Peter Erni who raised ‘goat’ funds from Swiss Rotary clubs. RCBS Service Community Chair Anita Lococo has also given tons of hours to this fun project.

 

The latest animal adventure brings us back to Karangasem where a pilot project is now beginning in Celuk. It’s clucking, cheeping and cock-a-doodle doos that greet visitors to this elderly poverty level household. Starting off with 20 hens and four roosters, we look forward to seeing the hens produce a dozen or so eggs a day…very saleable in the local market.

Every precaution is being taken to keep these chickens healthy and they are all being immunized. Chicken feed for the first few months of the project will be given to the family.   Based on projected egg production income, the family should be able to continue to buy feed on their own.

Just in case…because we’ve seen projects where chickens fail to deliver eggs (or worse yet, die)…a limited number of Kwir (sometimes called chicken-ducks) will be added to the chicken flock. Kwir also produce eggs and, if they become prolific breeders, are considered a tasty treat at the table…a definite money-maker for the family. (NOTE WELL…do not fall in love or give names to your Kwir! Sending them off for somebody’s dinner would break your heart.) We’re also told that Kwir will eat almost anything…including banana peels. Kwir breeders warn new owners to keep their Kwir out of the kitchen…they’ll go for your lunch! And finally, because success with piglets has been so good, a couple of piglets will be added to the menagerie mix.

This pilot project is being closely watched with lots of involvement and tender loving care on the part of the project organizers, RCBS members Jeni Kardinal and Sally Bellmaine. Past Rotarian Ping is our man on the ground in Karangasem and Rtn Sue Bishop, Director Rumah Sehat is our banker.

 

So after exposure to these various animal menageries, it’s time for a bubbly wash-up! If you’re a visitor here, you may sometimes wonder whether you should pocket your left over bars of soap rather than see them go to waste…but please do leave them behind. Internationally, over 540 hotels are now collecting those slightly used bars of soap.   A project, aptly named Soap for Hope, shaves down the left-behind soap, sanitizes the soap chips and reshapes the chips into new and clean bars of soap. The soap is then distributed to low income families, orphanages and children at government schools…wherever it is needed.

Last year Soap for Hope made over 24 million bars of soap! Here in Bali we’re very proud of our club President Alex Jovanovic, who is an ardent leader and supporter of this project. As the General Manger of the Trans Hotel and Resort, Alex happily contributes lots of left over soap.

 

Yours in Rotary,

Marilyn Carson

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