Many of our guests arrive as customers and leave as a friends. Like Corinna, who visited us last year. That was not her first and for sure not last trip to Sulawesi. I think she (too) has left a piece of her heart in this amazing archipelago.
Which is why she felt the urge to help, where help is needed the most when Covid-19 hit the world.
With the lock downs the places which were already poor began to suffer even more. In Sulawesi life happens mostly outside on the streets. This is where you buy and sell your vegetables and other home made/grown products. This is where you hang out and meet people. You eat in warungs, use ojek and bentor (motorbike taxis) for transportation and buy daily goods in small family owned kiosks. When everyone was asked to stay at home, the affect on the daily life and business was huge. Empty streets, closed shops and warungs and needles to say, nobody used public or taxi transport. Even fishermen could not often sell their daily catch. Pretty much everyone who worked in tourism lost their job.
Corinna organized in very fast pace food deliveries in many areas in Manado, Gorontalo and Togean islands. This is a co-operation in fully volunteer/friendship basis. She collects donations and we together with her other friends in North and Central Sulawesi are the hands who deliver.
With the donation money we can deliver food to many families who need it most. In Togean we have been delivering whole villages like Taupan. In big villages like Bomba and Wakai we choose the poorest families, mostly elderly and single parents. The donations go 1:1 to the people in need without cutting f.ex. administration fees.
Another project we started together with Corinnas help was to provide dive courses for the locals. This is a sustainable way to help. When life begins to return to normal and tourism returns to Togeans, they have much better opportunities to employ themselves in the resorts here or elsewhere in Indonesia. Corinna collects the money for the certifications and we cover the rest of the costs and give the courses for free. So far we had Open Water, Advanced and Rescue & EFR courses going on and we hope to educate at least one of the strongest candidates until Divemaster level. For this we still need a few more donations ;)
Please have a look www.supportalocal.net and donate. Even small amounts counts!