BOOK A ROOM WITH US AND THE PROCEEDS GO TO HELP A SLUM IN JAKARTA
Amidst the hustle and bustle of Jakarta lies a quaint village where time stands still.
Located a minute off a main road, the din of the traffic gives way to children's laughter, roosters and the swaying leaves of banana trees that surround the village.
Affectionately called the 'Banana Republic' as it is smack in the middle of a banana plantation, this village is as authentic as it gets. The people who live there run a small recycling business. As a guest, you're welcome to help them to truly immerse yourself.
Their homes, like their lives, are interconnected with one another, creating a sense of community you won't find in any hotel. Your room is cosy and simple. A mattress, a fan and if you're lucky, the children will share their toys with you. The room sleeps one comfortably, although you'll be alright with two people.
When it's shower time, bring your own towel and head down to the communal shower area. Surrounded by banana trees, it has clean running water and a couple of roosters for company next door. You might want to carry a flashlight with you if you shower at night!
The hosts speak little English, but that's half the fun. Hand gestures, charades and learning a few words of Bahasa Indonesia are bound to get a few laughs from them. While they may live a simple existence, you won't find a more generous group of people.
By looking at the pictures, you'll see that this is a back-to-basics, get-your-hands-dirty sort of place. You're not going to be served iced tea while you watch the sun set or be given a massage just before your three-course dinner.
Then in December, the floods arrive. Heavy rains cause the river that surrounds the village to overflow. The truth is, there is little the villagers can do unless they have more funds to clear the clogging river. The rusty tin roofs leak water and leave the homes damp.
This type of accommodation may not be your cup of tea, but by renting this space, you give them a much needed boost of income that will eventually help ease their worries.
Here's how you can help:
Stay at Banana Republic- $10/night. Bring your own toiletries and a sleeping bag if you want. A simple mattress is provided.
Spend the day at the Banana Republic - $10. Hang out with the locals and experience village life for yourself.
The money will go to help fund the de-clogging of the river and construction of better roofs.
We'll be posting constant updates on this listing to show you what the villagers are doing with your money.
This is a FANTASTIC initiative by Jeremy, and I am proud to be a part of it!
I wanted to help Jeremy and the village by booking a room in absentia - that is, I booked and paid for the room but did not stay there. This enabled Jeremy and the team to receive my contribution directly and for me to help publicize their cause on (website hidden).
It's simple to do, just book a night or two, then in the message section, apologise to Jeremy for not being able to be there in person. (I live in Singapore so was not able to fly in.) You will receive a message back from Jeremy confirming this is ok with him.
What a wonderful way to help this village upgrade themselves from the devastation of flooding! :-)