Bulletin 17 December 2012Rotary Club Bali Ubud Sunset District 3420/No.79571 Meeting every Monday at 5:30pm Maya Resort, Ubud
December 17, 2012
Attending: Bill, Bruce, Cat, Mr. Chu, Chris, Danielle, Driya, Kaler, LLoyd, Marilyn, Probo, Rosalind, Sue,
Guests: Rtn Rich Foss (RC Colorado Springs Interquest), Honorary Member Mary Northmore (RC Seminyak), PP Eka Indrawati (RC Bali Taman), Rtn Diane Parker (RC Ogopogo), Anna Marie Kipak, Susan Tereba, Mitch Schwartz, Margie Templeton, Lindsay Carson, Victore Fahey, Nadya, Werner Brendt, Triane Brendt, Suzan Kohlik, Ngurah Termana, Putra, Roro, Made, Jess Kemp, Baibo Kemp, Ivan Kemp,
ANNOUNCEMENTS, CORRESPONDENCE, REPORTS
What a great guest turnout for our last meeting of the year! We must honestly admit this wasn’t totally due to the charm, magnetism and vibrancy of our club. Add the deep importance of the message being delivered by our young, activist Guest Speakers and interested guests joined us.(Sec Rucina is a super star at bringing remarkable speakers to us.)
We’ve been clicking away to earn air miles for Rotary! Thanks to everyone who accessed the charity miles website every day so that Rotary could continue its worldwide efforts and deliver support in needy communities. And thanks to the airlines who make this possible.
Back up your web site! We didn’t! And when our web site host changed their system, much of our web site got lost. Then they did their daily backup and backed up the partial site – and half our site is gone forever. Slowly, we are rebuilding and soon, we hope, it will be better than ever. Theoretically, we shouldn’t have to back up our site, but the reality is….. we’ll be doing it from now on (as soon as we learn how). Better safe than sorry….
Next Meeting January 7: Our next meeting will be held as usual at the Maya Ubud Hotel with guest speaker Jon Leonard talking about “Superhygiene – Food Integrity” and his free-range organic meat products grown without chemical interventions and cruelty based farming, the most natural and spiritual meat products available for human omnivores.
Rotary Clubs in Bali Peace Essay Competition: PP Sue, working closely with Rtns Ade and Sudana, and Rustiasa submitted 51 completed Peace Essays written by junior high, high school and college students. These will be amongst the several hundred essays written by young people participating in this competition. Judges are now reading and evaluating essays coming from all over Bali and on Jan 27, the results will be announced at the awards get together in Nusa Dua, a location about two hours distant from Ubud. To make sure all our contestants can attend, the club will provide transportation. It should be a fun outing for everyone…no matter who wins!
Breaking News! For the very best news of all we heard from Rtn Bill and PP Sue. Huge amounts of time and effort have gone into due diligence and research for this potential project and at last the HIV/AIDS GG Proposal looks like it is fully funded! If accepted by RI this project will bring a fully staffed and equipped HIV AIDS testing facility to Ubud where clients can, at no cost, anonymously be tested for HIV, and obtain test results within less than an hour. If found positive, client will receive needed drugs and ongoing follow-up to ensure continuous use of medication.. Everyone tested will be counseled about safe sex practices. The project also includes visits to villages to carry the safe sex message and encourage men and women to come to the clinic for testing. The spread of HIV is reaching epidemic numbers in the Regency of Gianyar and it is way past time to be proactive. Wish us well as the Proposal is reviewed by RI. And special thanks to RC La Jolla Golden Triangle and RC Blythe for their generous financial and cheerleading support.
PP LLoyd reminded all of our members that a large portion of the funding for this project will be provided by Rotary’s World Fund and our club’s donations to Every Rotarian Every Year makes this possible. LLoyd thanked all members who have already generously donated to EREY and looked forward to having all members soon included.
RCBUS to be new organizing club for RYLA: For the first time RC Bali Ubud Sunset will be the organizing club for RYLA (Rotaract Youth Leadership Award). Our own Rtn Probo and Driya are assuming a leadership role as they learn how this event is developed and managed…thanks to the help of fellow Rotarians from RCs Taman, Denpasar and Seminyak.
Driya introduced PP Eka (RC Taman) who has been at the RYLA leadership front for the past seven years. Eka encouraged all Bali clubs to be involved and summarized the several planning meetings that have already been held. Our club will be well represented with Probo as Chair, Marilyn as vice chair, Driya as secretary, and Sue as treasurer. The three day event will take place on April 12 to 14. Sue reminded us that RYLA is an amazing program similar to Outward Bound which gives kids confidence and pride and develops leadership. Last year physically challenged young people were included and kids and reported the experience was life changing. We’re proud to be involved.
On December 2, Rtns Probo and Driya, our award winning Indonesian innovators, hosted a Reforestation Festival where 1,000 trees were planted in the Kintimani area. The turnout was excellent and the event was especially blessed by a downpour as the planting was completed. Nothing could be better for all those baby trees.
PP Sue introduced our guest speakers, Tremana, Roro, Putra, and Made representing Taman 65, a leaderless community with activities and speakers. These young activists include graduates from universities in Jogjakarta and share a compound in Denpasar.
The speakers took turns explaining that they were determined to bring light to the issue of the 1965 massacres which took place across Indonesia with a particular focus on Bali. The government, army and private citizens have all conspired to keep the details of these events concealed for their own reasons. Background: In September 1965 seven generals were killed, accused by the New Order of being Communists. At that time the New Order and the Communists were vying for control of the country. The army formed a special unit to hunt down and kill Communists and sympathizers beginning in Central Java and soon moving to East Java and Bali and then the whole country from Aceh to Papua. This resulted in mass killings all over the country. The number of dead is estimated to be between 500,000 and 3,000,000.
Although the New Order told people that the situation was political, the army used local tensions and issues to raise strong feelings. There was much local anger about the new land reform laws, which stated that no individual could own more than 7.5 hectare. The land owners tended to be Nationalist and the poor people Communist. The media accused the Communists of planning a coup and degraded Communists to inflame sentiments against them. In the resulting massacre, between 13,000 and 80,000 (10% of the population at that time) were killed in Bali. Survivors were jailed without trial for over 4 years and their families denied university education or civil service positions.
On a personal level, one of the young men said he had been confused since junior high school because the New Order taught that Communists were evil and immoral but at the same time he was hearing other stories from his family. His teacher said that the government never lied to the people. He heard rumors that his grandfather had been killed in 1965 but when he asked his family, he was told that his grandfather had just fallen sick and died. He really wanted to know the truth. He went to study in Jogjakarta, met some activists and returned home determined to learn the truth. Then he discovered that his best friend’s grandfather had killed his own grandfather, but no one from either family would talk about it. “There is a big generation gap. Elders do not want to talk about the past. They scold us and tell us that we have a good life now, opening up the past may threaten that.”
“Many people think Bali is harmonious and peaceful and we are told to be proud to be Balinese but how can we be proud? The conflict was not about politics. It was over land and personal issues. I was shocked when some of my family said that the survivors benefited by inheriting land from massacred relatives and don’t want to open that can of worms. Neighbors killed each other for land. The military blames civil society, ordinary people blame politics.”
“It’s a very complex situation. This is not just about our families but ten percent of the whole Balinese people at that time. We want to open the discussion to all. It is a national tragedy. We refuse to forget… if we don’t talk about the events, it is as though we condoned them. Our generation must fight the amnesia of history.”
Taman 65 encourages discussion about sensitive topics such as HIV/AIDS, the impact of tourism, human rights, and providing exhibition space for people who believe in social justice. The truth can be shared through community discussion, art exhibitions and photography (Ubud galleries will not hang their paintings or photos on sensitive subjects so they are displayed in Denpasar). The group also fundraises for earthquake and tsunami victims, teaches English, networks with human rights groups in Jakarta and Yogyakarta and gathers information. They have just published a book titled “Melawan Lupa” (Against Forgetting).
One current project is to collect songs from survivors of that era. A member of Taman 65 sang a gentle, touching song written by a political prisoner, his last message to his family before his execution.
Club members warmly thanked this group of brave young people who are determined to shed light on a very sensitive social and political issue that many older Indonesians are equally determined to keep in the dark.by