Sunday, December 5, 2004, 21:19
• That community development must begin from within, by the local people and using the local resources.
• That alternative technology and education can become the catalyst for long last growth.
• In living with the people, learning from the people and working together with them.
• In the equality of all mankind.
• That as citizens of this earth it is our responsibility to assist those less fortunate than us.
LEAP was founded in Australia by Channa and Ruby Senaratne in 2004. Channa and Ruby have lived and worked in Indonesia over the past 12 years. They first lived on the island of Asu in the Hinako group of Islands, Sirombu, West Nias, Indonesia between 1995 and 2000. During this time they operated a small café for surfing tourists. They were actively involved in the local community, establishing a playgroup, holding medical clinics and teaching fibre-glass canoe construction while gaining insight into local customs and culture. They speak fluent Indonesian. Between 2000 and 2003 they lived in Padang running a furniture factory employing 45 staff, which was handed over to the Indonesian management in 2003.
The couple set up Yayasan Indo Jiwa (YIJ) an Indonesian foundation, in 2005 as a focused vision to assist the villagers of Nias to escape from poverty. Yayasan Indo Jiwa operate a 100ft Bugis Schooner, “Indo Jiwa” which acts as a platform for transporting goods and personnel to the islands and is therefore able to overcome accessibility difficulties. The “Indo Jiwa” is also run as a surf and holiday charter boat during the surf season, as a means of raising funds for Yayasan Indo Jiwa.
LEAP/YIJ has been working in the Hinako region of Nias since August 05 2005. The focus of LEAP/YIJ is livelihoods development, specifically coconut industry development; fisheries and education. LEAP/YIJ is the only NGO based in the Hinako group.