My article featured in the Bali Advertiser

I was happy to get a full page feature article published in the Bali Advertiser this week.  It’s about a Balinese man, Nyoman, who went to England and volunteered to help the homeless.

Now this is something of a role reversal (given how many westerners come to Indonesia and volunteer), so it was interesting to learn about such an experience in the UK – from a Balinese point of view.

To whet your appetite it starts like this….

Local Balinese hero helps the homeless in England

Nyoman Karta is a chef with a difference.

Until December 2010, Nyoman had been living and working in the Ubud area all his life.  But things were about to change.

With his friendly Balinese smile, a love of cooking and a desire to travel, Nyoman packed his bags and went to England.  He stayed with his partner, Fiona, an occupational therapist in Ipswich, Suffolk and thoroughly enjoyed bonding with their four year old son Putu, known as Oscar by his friends.

Nyoman told me about some of the wonderful experiences of being with Oscar through the changing seasons in England.  “We helped each other to make snowmen in the winter, learnt to cook gingerbread men together in the spring and went crabbing, cycling and to the park in the summer,” he explained.

During the weekdays, when Putu was at pre-school, Nyoman felt the need to do something with his time.  He particularly wanted to put his culinary skills to good use.  An opportunity presented itself and, in a somewhat reverse role for a Balinese man in England, Nyoman became a volunteer cooking meals for the homeless.

“The Ipswich Umbrella Trust looks after people with mental health problems, the homeless and those with drug and alcohol issues,” Nyoman told me and continued, “Up to 30 people a day are cared for.  Some of these people originally came from as far away as Poland, Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan.  There was a limited budget for the meals so I often took in herbs and spices from my garden, or that I had bought from the market, such as lemongrass, chili, garlic, turmeric, coriander and ginger.  This gave the food much more flavour and the people lapped it up.”…..

……………– The full article can be read on page 33 of the Bali Advertiser (4th -18th April edition) and on their website alternatively contact me and I will send it to you.

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1 Comment

  1. That’s a great story. If anyone can ‘share the love and the spirit of giving’ all over the world it will be the Balinese.


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