IDEP Foundation

Befriend With Disaster – Resilient Village Adjacent With Everlasting Local Culture

Local Balinese tend to fancy communal gatherings with families, friends, and neighbors, especially stomach churning entertainment involved like ‘bondres’ show and ‘Cenk Blonk’ shadow-puppet show. However, how to put this momentum [from the show] as the vessel to raise awareness for them enhancing their capacity to be resilient and prepared towards disaster?

Tangkas Village, Klungkung District, Klungkung Regency is a riverside neighborhood (located at the side of well-known Unda River). With higher chance of flooding and landslide, the community conducted a disaster drill/simulation and capacity building for Community Disaster Management Group (CDMG). The group had been formed in “Enhancing Community Resilience Through Disaster Risk Reduction Work in Bali” program carried by IDEP Foundation and fully supported by Give2Asia. For two years IDEP Foundation – that has experiences in community capacity building since 1999, specifically in environmental movement, food security, and disaster – go side by side with Klungkung communities of Jumpai Village and Tangkas Village to be more prepared towards disaster risk reduction.

The preliminaries process for preparedness and disaster management highly needed to be done for Tangkas community (Jumpai Village community already conducted their Tsunami drill within the same program on December 2015). Therefore, within this program, selected member of community groups of the entire village already involved fully in the formation of CDMG. From training sessions about disasters; emergency response; first aid; evacuation management; landscape mapping for evacuation routes; and the last is forming and managing Community Disaster Management Group – a community organization with its function to become the frontline for emergency response gathered from existing local associations (i.e women’s group, youth’s union, farmer’s group, domestic guardians, etc).

Through all of these series of events were closed with big simulation (of disaster drill) that was involving all elements of Tangkas Village society and Village’s officials to join. The event started with briefing and coordination speech, and then followed by direct practice of evacuation simulation on landslide and flood. In order to created a ‘tangkas’ (tangkas in Bahasa Indonesia means agile) community from Tangkas Village, this activity involving all elements of the village communities.

Mostly the activities engage elementary school students and some adult volunteer, where these kids were practicing emergency response and evacuation.  These 5th and 6th grader were taking part as victims and learn on how to evacuate when the disaster happen in their village, some of them were role playing as victims (which they might enjoy being rescued and evacuated – notify they might become a good actor in the future). CDMG choose Bale Banjar  (community hall in Balinese) as assembly point and evacuation campsite, later these orange troops became very busy with each their own roles following each tasks announced through walkie-talkie. In the end, Tangkas’ CDMG able to prove their ‘agility’ responding to disaster emergency situation and work as a unified group.

By the end of simulation session, the event continued with the showcase of traditional comedy drama – bondres ‘Celekontong Mas’, the mix combination of drama, dance, and buffoonery, by inviting all community layers (and all age numbers) to sit and laugh altogether while enjoying the show, that have some inserts of emergency response campaign (prove to be easily digested). The show itself is one of the most effective campaign, because the use of local wisdoms and local language that people can relate (added jokes that will make them laughing out loud) is one of the way to deliver the message that people can be understood easily.

But the show wasn’t over yet, later at the nighttime, IDEP invited the whole Klungkung community to gather and watch Wayang Cenk Blonk shadow-puppet show in the city monument. On that night, thousands of people gathered, including Klungkung’s regent, witnessing the show played by very famous shadow puppet group. Using a very well know traditional icon is a very good strategy to deliver a very positive message about disaster, since disaster is a very heavy topic to talk about. After all, Klungkung community had a lot of laugh but able to came back home with full awareness of emergency response and potential disaster in their area. Thank you team!