CWS Asia


6x4 Indonesia_Tana Toraja

In the primary school in Lembang Rano, Tana Toraja, even as they wait for help to improve their school, 70-plus teachers and student students just came together to hear from District Disaster Management Agency (BPBD) and CWS staff about the Safe Schools concept and to learn the basics of what they themselves can do to make their school safer and, importantly, what they must do to protect themselves in the event of a disaster. Photo: CWS


With some basic information-sharing and education leading to better home gardening and chicken-raising, Simri and his family now have a better diet and a little extra money from selling eggs. Photo: CWS

Therapeutic Feeding Center (TFC) - West Timor

Benedicta Mone holds her 15 month old daugther, Indriyani, while CWS nurse, Agnes Eva Liunokas (right), feed her a special milk formula outside the Therapeutic Feeding Center (TFC). The TFC treats malnourished children in the rural Timor Tengah Selatan District of West Timor, Indonesia. Operated out of the local hospital, CWS nurses provide care around the clock: administering medicine, establishing frequent feeding schedules and education for the parents to prepare nutritious food once back at home. Photo: CWS

CWS teams first served the people of Indonesia through the Communion of Churches in Indonesia in the 1950s. Then following decades of humanitarian and development work, and a brief hiatus in 1997, CWS partnered significantly with the U.S. government through USDA and USAID Title II funding after a series of crises, both natural and manmade, caused a dramatic increase in food prices and pervasive poverty, as well as alarmingly high malnutrition rates among young children.

As the economy has stabilized, many people’s lives and livelihoods have improved. However, there are several remaining areas of poverty, hunger and malnutrition, so CWS continues its original work through our signature Timor Zero Hunger initiative in partnership with UMCOR. This work also significantly funds CWS-led initiatives for the continuing response to the Fukushima, Japan, nuclear disaster.

Also in Indonesia, CWS partners with UNHCR to protect and support refugees and asylum seekers from across Asia and eastern Africa. Additionally, we partner with Act for Peace to promote school and community safety in areas prone to inclement weather and climate-related disasters.

Latest News

If at first you don’t succeed …

CWS Indonesia | February 21, 2017

When 14 farmers from Fetomone village established their Farmer Group in March 2016, members agreed that they would cultivate corn together on a new plot of land. But because of some mistakes about the land’s arability and, especially, the lack of proper attention to the plot from group members, things did not go as planned […]

Many Villagers Are Their Own First Responders

CWS Indonesia | February 19, 2017

In Indonesia, a Village Disaster Preparedness Team is a group of volunteers who facilitates all activities related to disaster prevention, response preparedness (readiness) and any response needed. Lembang Paku village in Tana Toraja province is in a mountainous area about 50 kilometers from the nearest town. Landslides are a common occurrence in this part of […]

Ingredients for a new life

CWS Indonesia | January 25, 2017

Toward the end of December 2016 a group of 14 unaccompanied asylum-seeking boys from Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Ethiopia and Somalia gathered in a large kitchen in south Jakarta for an intensive, three-day baking course. This was a welcome break from the long, routine days and weeks the boys spend in their CWS-supported group homes. Since […]

A Government Ag Extension Worker Expands His Own Knowledge to Help Others

CWS Indonesia | January 15, 2017

Benjamin Rao is an Ag Extension Instructor in Noebeba sub-district in West Timor – an area that is highly food insecure, partly because of limited access to water. Mr. Rao has been living on Oebaki village with his wife and children for just over a decade and, in recent years, he has been involved in […]

A ‘Near Miss’ Of Landslide Damage Reinforces the Need for Community-based Disaster Awareness Activities

CWS Indonesia | January 9, 2017

A recent narrow escape from disaster by students and teachers in the primary school in Lembang Rano, Tana Toraja, is a timely reminder of the importance of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) projects. In October 2016 Lembang Rano village was hit by a landslide that cut off road access, disrupted the water supply, destroyed seven houses […]

An Afghan Refugee Makes the Most of His Time While Waiting for Onward Asylum

CWS Indonesia | December 28, 2016

Muhammad* and his bicycle are a familiar sight around the CWS-UNHCR Refugee Center in Jakarta. Twice a week for the last two years the 56-year old has been attending English and computer classes at the Center – though most of his classmates are not older than 20. To save what little money he has, Muhammad […]

CWS helps others to the recent earthquake in Indonesia’s Pidie Jaya district in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam province

CWS Indonesia | December 15, 2016

CWS, as the convener of the ACT Indonesia Forum, coordinated the submission of a Rapid Response Fund (RRF) request to the ACT Alliance, and the request was approved on December 14th. Nearly $60,000 is now available to Indonesian ACT member YEU to partner with fellow ACT member NGO, Pelkesi, to ensure essential assistance for 1,000 […]

CWS and our ACT Alliance partners stand ready to respond to the needs of the Indonesian people affected by the earthquake in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam province

CWS Indonesia | December 8, 2016

A 6.4 magnitude earthquake has struck Indonesia’s Pidie Jaya district in Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam province at 05.03 local time on 7th December 2016. Assessments are ongoing, and Indonesia’s national disaster management agency (BNPB) has reported that close to 100 people have died and more than 600 have been injured. Around 200 buildings have either collapsed […]

Facilitators Start to Support Destana (disaster resilient village) Program with a HVCA Workshop

CWS Indonesia | December 3, 2016

Mr. Om Nuban is a member of the disaster-risk reduction (DRR) Forum in Timor Tengah Selatan (TTS) district in West Timor. The 41-year-old has 15-plus years work experience with Indonesian NGOs, is among the initiators of the DRR forum in TTS, and has been an active participant and supporter of the SOLIDARITAS project. Most recently […]

An Afghan Asylum Seeker Volunteers Her Time and Talent To Help Others

CWS Indonesia | December 1, 2016

Zakera, who is one an asylum seekers whom CWS supports in Jakarta, studied mathematics at Kabul University and taught at a private school there. As a woman of Hazara ethnicity, Zakera was not completely surprised to receive death threats in her homeland because her Hazara people are greatly persecuted there. After another Hazara colleague and […]

What’s up with WhatsApp in Rural Indonesia?

CWS Indonesia | November 15, 2016

During a recent “InaSAFE workshop in South Sulawesi in eastern Indonesia, 23 staff from government and non-government organizations learned how to use this innovative disaster risk mapping application developed by the Indonesian National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB), with support from the Australian government (DFAT). The application creates realistic disaster impact scenarios, helping government and NGO […]

Wise Planning Extends CWS Partnership For the Tefu Family in West Timor

CWS Indonesia | November 14, 2016

Simri Tefu and his wife Yetri are in their early twenties, and their son, Bento, is three. They live in Enonabuasa village on the western side of Timor island. Most families in this remote and impoverished village, which is at the farthest end of the Indonesian archipelago, are subsistence farmers. Many young children here suffer […]

Great feeling being in the new home that CWS supports in partnership with the UNHCR

CWS Indonesia | November 3, 2016

Sixteen-year-old Maysam (not his real name) is among the 35 teenage boys living in a new CWS-supported group home for unaccompanied and separated refugee children in Jakarta. Originally from a small town in Ghazni Province in southeastern Afghanistan, Maysam fled his home after a Taliban-affiliated group abducted his father, who was a shopkeeper. “We had […]

Providing homes for young refugees in Jakarta

CWS Indonesia | October 28, 2016

The CWS Protecting Urban Refugees through Empowerment – or PURE – program in Jakarta is expanding! In partnership with the UNHCR, the Department of State Bureau on Population, Refugees and Migration and the Australian government, we are opening new group homes for unaccompanied or separated refugee children. Below, three CWS staff members reflect on the […]

CWS supported democratic annual election of Refugee Representatives

CWS Indonesia | October 12, 2016

Recently, refugees and asylum seekers who participate in the UNHCR-funded PURE initiative gathered at their community center in Jakarta for their much-anticipated annual election of 18 Refugee Representatives. On September 1st eight women and eight men were elected by their peers to play an important role in voicing the aspirations and concerns, and presenting the […]

CWS-led SOLIDARITAS project is supporting villages to become disaster resilient

CWS Indonesia | October 11, 2016

Several years ago the Government of Indonesia introduced its Disaster Resilient Village program, Desa Tangguh Bencana – or, simply, Destana.  Now, with Australian government funding, the CWS-led SOLIDARITAS project is supporting two South Sulawesi villages to become disaster resilient and to serve as models for other nearby villages. As a first step in SOLIDARITAS, three […]

In Jakarta, CWS hosts unaccompanied and separated children in group homes

CWS Indonesia | September 17, 2016

These young people left their homes – often forced to flee persecution or harm – and are alone in Indonesia without their families. We are preparing to open two new group homes, which will provide safety and security for an additional 80 boys.

Pumpkin is a great source of nutrition.

CWS Indonesia | September 16, 2016

As leaves start to change and temperatures drop, one thing is for sure: this is pumpkin season! But pumpkin is more than just a reminder of fall. It’s a great source of nutrition. In August, CWS teamed up with nearly 200 moms in West Timor, Indonesia to focus on preparing meals using pumpkin!

Celebrate Safe Schools and Safe Communities project partnership

CWS Indonesia | September 9, 2016

To celebrate our Safe Schools and Safe Communities project partnership with Act for Peace and local government duty bearers, CWS team members recently joined students, parents and teachers for an exhibition showcasing activities at the 15 primary schools that are part of the initiative in the Tana Toraja district of South Sulawesi in central Indonesia. […]

A graphic design workshop to explore young refugees’ graphic design interest and talents

CWS Indonesia | April 30, 2016

To support educational activities for young refugees living in CWS-managed group homes in Jakarta, PURE team members arranged for eight boys join a one-day graphic design workshop to explore their graphic design interest and talents. Dampu Design hosted the boys at no cost to CWS, and they all learned graphic design basics, including packaging design […]

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