We have recently been talking to Sylvie Wilson, president of the charitable organisation, “Le geste d’amour” (the gesture of love). The charity was established following the devastating Tsunami of 2004 to assist the people of Sitinoraiti in Sumatra.
Their vision is to provide a better general quality of life for the children of Sitinoraiti and in 2009 an orphanage “Lembaga Panti Asuhan Sitinoraiti” (Institute to help the children of Sitinoraiti) was inaugurated. They strive to provide a secure, healthy and caring environment; promoting the children’s educational and social development.
The orphanage is located in Pangururan in Northern Sumatra, Indonesia and occupies an area of 6000m² on the border of Lake Toba.
The objective is not only to house, educate and care for the children, but to continue to help them into work. During our month’s stay at Sitinoraiti we hope to assist with the general day-to-day running of the centre, coordinate various educational programmes and arrange leisure pursuits and English conversation classes.
With our ’home’ on our roof and our vehicle making us completely self-sufficient, we will not be dependent on the resources of the charity projects we visit so can give 100%.
To find out more about the work of Sitinoraiti Orphanage please click here.
Most 'young?' people, when their parents/in-laws go away on holiday for a month would be breaking out the sound system and advertising 28 days of non-stop parties. Not us loser travel-type geeks... we have transformed the lounge into 'Adventure Planning HQ'. Over the next 4 weeks we want to engross ourselves in full-on research and start amalgamating facts and info that we have accrued over the last 16 months (has it been that long?). We pillaged Guernsey Library of all its Lonely Planet guidebooks, brought our computers downstairs, stocked up the fridge hibernation style and banned all television. 800 days has officially moved up a gear and is gaining momentum...
We write this sat on a car ferry in gale force 11 winds while Bee-Bee is parked out on the deck enduring the elements. Sadly, we are not on our way across the Pacific from Auckland to Panama, or battling through monsoon storm waves in Indonesia; we are on our way back to Guernsey after enjoying a 10 day festive break. Originally due to sail on the fast ferry from Weymouth on the 2nd January (a smooth 2 ½ hours) we had to re-route from Portsmouth after adverse weather conditions led to the fast ferry’s cancellation. We are currently into hour 10 of what is turning out to be a 17 hour journey. 17 HOURS! We could actually get to Argentina or Indonesia in that time. No cabins, reclining chairs or comfortable seats; just a bench opposite the duty free shop where we occasionally have to dodge flying bottles of Courvoisier and boxes of 800 Superkings as lurching waves sent even the shelves crashing to the floor. I bet even the slow boat to China sold chips. We held our breath every time the crew announced car registrations over the tannoy; vehicles which had slipped and smashed into adjacent cars on the rough, swaying parking deck... luckily Bee-Bee stood fast.
We have, however, had a most wonderful Christmas holiday... much needed rest and relaxation to charge our over-worked batteries and catch up with family and friends. In addition, we have acquired ourselves a whole bunch of adventure goodie gifts which sees us tick many boxes on our essential equipment list. Our stove, hammock, key safe, wildlife identification guides, notebooks, an axe and a bumper-mounted bottle opener to name but a few.
Taking Bee-Bee to the mainland enabled us to order and collect our ‘too heavy and expensive to post’ super-bumper, high-lift jack and Jerry cans. We made the most of the January sales in Weymouth, Bournemouth and Portsmouth, purchasing some of our clothing list essentials including thermal layers, waterproofs and jackets.
2012, officially the “year of the adventure” is now upon us and with not long to go we need to bring all the last 14 months of planning together as our departure date looms. We are going to get ‘adventure fit’ to prepare ourselves physically for the trip; as well as less weight being more economical, our chances of out-running Mexican drug lords and grizzly bears increases dramatically.