Once again we are off to Bandung, a beautiful “Dutch” city. Yeats ago, there were many plantations here (tea, coffee, fruits, etc.) and the it was the center of Dutch shipping and trade. That of course, is long since gone, but there is still a fair amount of Dutch-inspired architecture around town – population 3 million. Rather than make one long post, I’ll break it up into topics.
We took the 8:30 am train from Jakarta and arrived Bandung at 11:59 am – exactly on time. Br. Edi (first counselor in the Branch Presidency) picked us up and took us first to Lembang, a suburb of Bandung, where we wanted to followup a project at Bina Anugrah Special School, a school for special needs kids. LDS Charities had drilled a water well for the school and the surrounding 10 homes several months ago and we wanted to see how it was working out. Unfortunately, there was a mix up in communication and the school director was not there. When the project was first requested, it was also to included an upgrade of the toilet facility, but only the well was approved. (Why, we do not know.) So we wanted to see if the school was still in need of a new toilet and to possibly request funds for that work. We even went to her home to talk to her, but she wasn’t there either. So, the visit with the school director will have to wait until out next trip to Bandung.
Fortunately, the RT, the community leader for the 10 homes and lived right next door to the school, was there and he was happy to show us the well. He was SO grateful for the well and clean water!
Since that visit was cut short, Br. Edi took us to another water project in Lembang that is actually several years old. A group of 5 villages needed their well upgraded, so LDSC took on the project. B r. Edi, in fact, was the local coordinator. The water comes from a spring 6 km away (3.5 miles) and is piped to the tanks. It is then pumped and distributed to the villages and then to the homes. The great thing is that (a) the project is working perfectly to this day, (b) the villagers pay a monthly fee for the repairs and upkeep and (c) the village water committee manages the entire project going forward. This is exactly as it should be!