Bina Anugrah / Autism House

We caught the train this morning to Bandung to attend the Bandung Branch open house on Tuesday, but first to visit a couple of potential partners.  (Actually, both have been partners of LDS Charities in the past but it was before our time).

The train is 3.5 hours through the beautiful Indonesian countryside, so I wanted to share a few photos of the view, as seen from the train:

DeeAnn at Gambir Stasiun, the main train station of Jakarta
Terraced rice paddies
Trail leading back into the jungle
More terraces down in a valley
The jungle is beautiful….
A train car graveyard in one of the towns between Jakarta and Bandung
A lonely train station in the village of Cikampek (Cheek-am-peck)
Landscaping and shaped trees along the train tracks….
Me giving a local Bandung Beauty a kiss at the Bandung train station….


Bina Anugrah School

Our first visit was to Bina Anugrah, a school for handicapped children with a variety of issues that prevent them from going to a regular school – CP, blindness, deafness, artificial limbs, etc.  We visited them awhile back to check on the water well LDSC provided (it’s working well) and to see if they had new needs.  At that time, they said they needed a new toilet, and we were there to check on the progress of putting together their request.  But, today they said what they really need are supplies for the students (books, braille tools for the blind kids, a wheelchair for use around the school, etc.). Really more basic stuff than a new toilet – which they still need, but not yet.

Br. Edi (our driver and interpreter), me, Ibu Iis (principal), DeeAnn and Heri (Ibu’s husband)
As usual, they always offer some food.  She made the Ranginang (sticky rice cakes) and is slicing the small cooked pumpkin…
The water well and tank from LDS Charities about a year ago.
Plaque on the well tower – “Given to the Bina Anugrah School from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, LDSC”
One of 4 classrooms – 42 students, 13 volunteer teachers
Another classroom – yes, it is that small….
The little “kitchen” and toilet
Dedeh (one of the teachers) showing us a classroom.  The posters by her head are sign language and braille letters
Asep (volunteer at the school), Dedeh and Ibu Iis (Mrs. Iis).  Such nice people…
The hallway of the school – from the back to the front door.  This is all the space there is for 42 handicapped kids….
They are supposed to send a list of exactly what they need – I hope we can do them some good….


Autism House

Our next visit was to meet with Augustini, program director at the Bandung Autism House

“School for children in need of special therapy”  “Autism House” “We care about their independence”
DeeAnn and me with Augustini

They had also received some help from LDSC a few years ago – in this case it was equipment and pads for their activity room:

DeeAnn couldn’t resist
One of the classrooms


They even had an ‘angklung’, a traditional bamboo Sundanese musical instrument!

Of course, any school that serves the handicapped or underprivileged (in their case, both) never has enough money to do what they would like to do. They have 50 students in the school (from 8:00 am to 12:00), then provide therapy for kids in the afternoon.  There are 10 students per class and each class has 3 teachers, who are paid very little.  Only 40% of the students’ parents are able to pay, so the costs for the other 60% are covered by donors and sponsors.  (Cost is about 500,000 Rp per month or $37.50).  Augustini will make up a list of priority needs, but right now she said they needed books, because hyperactive kids are very hard on books.  Hopefully, we can do them some good as well.

2 thoughts on “Bina Anugrah / Autism House”

  1. Dave your doing a very nice job on your blog. I feel like I am right there with you and DeeAnn with all the pictures in it. So many needs there it must be hard to decide who and how to help. I am sure you have been blessed with discernment in that area. Have you two been hiking in the jungle yet??


    1. Thanks so much for your kind words. It IS hard, because we have limited funds and so may places that need help. As to hiking in the jungle, well, we’ve gone through some jungle growth to get to some of the places we get to (water projects mostly), but not just to go hiking in the jungle… there might be bears…or something worse…


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