Eva Thiem – Impressions from Indonesia

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When I was invited by our director Tobias Schüßler to intensify my involvement and support GMI directly on site, I did not hesitate. For more than a year I have been involved with GMI in a voluntary capacity and now I had the chance to get to know the people about whom I had read so much. 

I support the NGO in public relations and am also regular donor. To actually be there has opened my eyes and I could see how vital our work is.

Yes, I already knew the facts about the living conditions there, but, and I think especially because of that, my visits were even more shocking. I knew that Nur A’Iniah, one of our participants, is sleeping with her family of four on a tiny mattress, but when you only read about it, it sounds far away and distant. When the five of us then sat together on this mattress and it became really really cozy, I realized how the people actually do live here. And yet they were full of joy and happiness.

Aside from my impressions in Denpasar, I also had the chance to visit villages with the nonprofit Gema Alam on the neighbor Island Lombok. The communities there are supposed to start receiving micro loans, too. I was especially fascinated from the village Pringgasela, where the women do traditional handweaving. In the beginning, there were just a few kids playing in the small road but word of our visit spread quickly and suddenly the street was turned into a basar. The people were proud to show us their skills, everyone talked at the same time and I had no idea what was going on. 

All this has motivated me to support GMI even more in the future. I could see from the participants that they value the opportunity that we give them and that they really want to improve their businesses and be successful.