Today marks the 23rd anniversary of Wreda Sejahtera Bali Foundation. On September 8, 1988 the foundation was established, ten years before the Guidelines of State Policy and seventeen years before the issuance of the Law of Elderly Welfare by the Government of the Republic of Indonesia. The bright and relieving idea for the elderly people in Bali was brought by Professor Luh Ketut Suryani and has became the pioneer of elderly care movement in Indonesia.
“I saw the growing number of elderly population and increasing the length of life expectancy as a result of the progress achieved in development today, then those who have the experience, expertise and wisdom need to be given the opportunity to play a role in development which our government still blind and deaf to this situation”, said Professor Luh Ketut Suryani during the celebration in Denpasar with around 2000 elderly from around Bali. “We have grown and changed a lot since our humble beginnings, and we’d like our elderly people still strong and healthy in physical, mental and spiritual”, add Professor Suryani.
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Indonesia was proclaimed an independent nation on 17th August, 1945. This declaration of independence came after Indonesia was colonized by the Dutch since the 17th century and by Japan in the years during the Second World War. Indonesia declared itself independent after Japan’s defeat in the war. However, even after this declaration of independence Netherlands refused to give up its colony and it was after much deliberations and discussions and UN interference in the matter that enabled final settlement.
“Many elderly were veteran’s war but only a little of them found recognition from our government. We want to give a chance for a bliss of happiness life to whomever born in the month of August can celebrate their birthday in a bigger family”, said Professor Luh Ketut Suryani as the leader of Wreda Sejahtera Foundation that has more than 5000 member of elderly around Bali. Despite the misery that many elderly face through their old days, this event hopes to bring some lights for the elderly people.
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In 2002 Bali bombings occurred in the tourist district of Kuta on the Indonesian island of Bali. The attack was the deadliest act of terrorism in the history of Indonesia, killing 202 people, (including 88 Australians, and 38 Indonesian citizens). A further 240 people were injured. The attack was continues in 2005. Nowadays, the form of the attack on Bali is through Balinese ancestor’s land. Much Balinese land does not belong to Balinese anymore.
“We want everybody who loves Bali to not sell their land, this is not our land but our ancestors land that we have to protect and preserve”, said Professor Luh Ketut Suryani on the Elderly National day that attended by 1600 elderly people who committed to protect the ancestor land.
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It’s often said that people put their heart and soul into their business but is mostly really just long hours and stress. For elderly people, business is not about money but how they can still function and productive. For that reason creating entrepreneurship and small business is one way to achieve that pride. One of the small business that introduced to the elderly is Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin Benth.) cultivation. It is a tropical shrub producing a kind of essential oil which is called the same (patchouli oil). In international trade, known as patchouli oilpatchouli oil (from the Tamil language patchai (green) and ellai (leaf), because of the oildistilled from the leaves). The smell of patchouli oil known as ‘heavy’ and ‘strong’ andhas been used for centuries as a perfume (perfume) and the ingredients of incense orincense on the eastern tradition. The selling price of patchouli oil are among the highestwhen compared with other essential oils.
“The idea that elderly people only wait for their time in this life has always struck me as a psychiatrist, I want to change the myth that they can be productive, happy and prosperous in their old time”, said Professor Luh Ketut Suryani when she brought some of elderly people to see Patchouli cultivation created by Daniel Bahari who was boxing coach, boxing manager and promoter in Bali.
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