Categories: Travel

The Whole Experience Gives Back: Lombok, Indonesia



We are beyond excited to announce the official launch of The Whole Experience Gives Back, in which we allocate a percentage of the proceeds from each retreat to supporting local social and environmental impact initiatives. It is so important to us that we are conducting business in the most sustainable way possible, which includes investment in and support for the local communities in which we operate. It is our valued Tribe Members’ support and participation in our retreats that make this all possible, so we say THANK YOU for your continued support; we couldn’t do any of this without you!

For our first official project, we partnered with a local non-profit that is doing work in Lombok, Indonesia. This community was severely impacted by the recent earthquakes that hit the island nation. One village in particular reached out to the non-profit we chose to work with via social media, asking for help. This story really touched our hearts as social media and creating community via this networking platform is, in part, how our business became so successful and is the primary way we connect with our clients.

The villagers explained they were in urgent need of clean water and proper housing. As a result of our donation from the Bali Fall 2018 retreat and the great work the non-profit already had in place, we were able to help with a project that built three wells in the village. The wells, which are close to completion, will now provide clean, fresh mountain water for the approximately 500 families that call this place home.

We were so inspired by this initiative and wanted to help as much as possible, and we were fortunate enough to be able to attend one of the non-profit’s bi-weekly trips to Lombok. While it was heart-wrenching to see firsthand the destruction that the earthquake has caused, we were touched by the resiliency of the people. Even in the face of this tragedy, they were so welcoming to us.

The day consisted of making paper airplanes with the local kids, women writing poems about what it was like living through the disaster, and giving the village an opportunity to explain what their most pressing needs are currently. With the help of an interpreter, they explained that they just want to find ways to support themselves and rebuild their homes. They lost everything, including their cooking utensils, tools, and means to provide for their families. It was such a humbling moment to put ourselves in their shoes and realize that without Western comforts, such as insurance and savings, where would we even begin to pick up the pieces if something like this happens to us?

These people are able and willing to put in the work; they just need the materials to do it. Countless homes were reduced to mere ruble, and many buildings, including one of the local schools, are now unsafe to enter. They have done their best to clear out the debris and salvage any material that may be reused; however, the trucks to haul away the debris cost money, and it is unfeasible for many of them currently. As a result, many are forced to live in a nearby refugee camp that is in a lowland area that will face serious flooding once the rainy season hits in November and December. Their temporary makeshift homes have tarps for roofs and will not sufficiently protect them from the upcoming intense tropical rains.

There is still so much work to be done. However, the goal the non-profit is working toward now is getting at least half of the village metal roofs before rainy season comes. That’s a total of 250 homes to be outfitted with metal roofs, with each roof costing $52 USD, which totals to an approximate goal of $13,000.

As we enter the season of giving, if you have the means to give, anything helps! Even a dollar goes a long way over here and could make a huge difference for these families. If not, we completely understand. Helping spread the word is just as helpful, so please feel free to share this post with your community. Together, we can give back and make a real tangible difference in another human being’s life. Join us as W.E. give back!