IT takes a whole lot of preparation to bring aid from Bunbury to poverty-stricken children in remote Indonesia.
But this didn’t deter a group of 9 local good samaritans, travelling nearly 3000 kilometres to three Balinese villages in May.
Between them they carted over 350 kilograms gifts and brought along 250 toothbrushes, cakes of soap, bars of chocolate, cans of deodorant, bottles of shampoo, exercise books and medical supplies.
Affectionately known as the Strong Angels, the group delivers about 600 care packs each year to orphaned and impoverished children.
The charity, founded by local woman Susanne Hunter, also runs a hostel and attached scholarship program.
While in Bali the group donated toys to the John Fawcett Foundation, a medical service aimed at restoring sight to underprivileged Indonesians.
Strong Angels volunteer Margaret Smith coordinates the distribution of care packs from her home in Gelorup.
Mrs Smith said she witnessed the devastation caused by blindness in remote Bali firsthand.
“Two of our sponsored children came on board because their father had gone blind at age 35 and their mother had died while trying to earn money for the family,” Mrs Smith said.
The family has been living in poverty since.
Children, Nengah Sunawan, 11, and Wayan Sukriani, 9, will be forced into field work or young marriages if their father’s sight is not restored.
But Mrs Smith said convincing him to make the long trip from his village in the mountains to the costal hub of Kuta for surgery was challenging.
“You can’t just go barging in and expect to fix it all straight away, they are a proud people and we have to accept that,” she said.
She said both children were extremely bright and would likely gain scholarships through the charity.
The group have since returned to Bunbury but plan to make another trip later this year.
To assist visit strongangels.asn.au