Complaining about Jakarta and all of its problems is a favorite hobby of pretty much everybody who lives here (us included, of course). After all, there is so very much to complain about.
But complaining is easy. How many of us who constantly talk about the capital’s problems are actually willing to get our hands dirty and do something to make it a better place?
Perhaps you’d like to help out your community but don’t know where to start. Well, here’s a list of seven great Jakarta charities that could use your help right now.
Blood4Life Indonesia acts as a bridge between patients who are in need of blood with volunteers that are willing to donate through social media and mailing lists. The organization also manages a 24-hour hotline. Volunteers with time constraints can help with public relations, database managements and educational outreach, while those who are able to commit to a rotating schedule can help with the 24-hour hotline and social media accounts. To register as a volunteer, fill in the recruitment form at www.blood4lifeid.com/oprec/
Rumah Harapan (Home for Hope)
Rumah Harapan is a halfway house in Tebet, South Jakarta that provides underprivileged patients and their families – who have travelled from all over Indonesia seeking treatment- with shelter, food, transport to and from hospitals, medicines, education and more during their long ordeal. Rumah Harapan is looking for volunteers who are willing to conduct various activities or classes of their own choice such as dancing, singing, stitching, public speaking or more for the patients. Also, the house is in need of caretakers who are keen on teaching children basic school subjects such as English, Mathematics, Bahasa Indonesia and others, three times a week for a minimum of three months. Depending on the activity, volunteers are free to choose their time commitment and are required to fill in a simple form stating their availability and activity. For more information, you can contact Wulan at 0878 838 1192 or visit their website: http://rumah-harapan.com/volunteer
Taman Bacaan Pelangi (Rainbow Reading Garden)
Taman Bacaan Pelangi is a non-profit organization, which has established 29 children’s libraries in 14 remote islands across Eastern Indonesia to encourage critical thinking in children and nurture their interests in reading. The foundation requires help in sorting and packing of books, managing book drives and also transporting books to Eastern Indonesia. Adding to the fun, volunteers can visit the libraries and spend some quality time with the children while basking in the beautiful scenery of Eastern Indonesia for two to fourteen days. For more info and to get involved, visit tamanbacaanpelangi.com.
Komunitas Taufan (Taufan’s Community)
Founded by Yeni Mulyaningsih Dewi after tragically losing her 7-year-old son, Taufan, to leukemia, this community offers moral and financial support to other underprivileged families that find themselves in similar situations. Volunteers can help by simply joining the crew to visit hospitals or homes of the patients and their families to entertain and boost their morale during their long ordeal. Komunitas Taufan also often organizes campaigns and events that require the support of volunteers. For more information and to register as a volunteer, email to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.komunitastaufan.org/en/
Jakarta Animal Aid Network
The Jakarta Animal Aid Network (JAAN) is a non-profit organization that has been at the forefront of protecting and improving animal welfare throughout Indonesia but especially in the capital. Over the years, JAAN has been responsible for many successful campaigns against unjust animal practices including travelling dolphin shows, shark finning, dancing monkeys and more. JAAN has an ongoing need for volunteers, especially those experienced in dealing with animals, to assist in organizing specific events, campaigns and fundraisers, educational outreach, finding foster homes and rescuing or rehabilitating exploited animals. Some volunteering opportunities are located outside Jakarta. If you are interested in getting involved, visit jakartaanimalaid.com or send an email to email@example.com.
Sahabat Anak (Children’s Friend)
Sahabat Anak is a non-profit organization and community of volunteers that provides quality education to encourage Jakarta’s street children to escape urban poverty. One of their first and most successful programs is the Teaching Tutorial (Bimbel) which relies on volunteers to provide basic education, moral and/or financial support to street children of different ages during their spare time, including on weekends. Volunteer are free to choose from 7 different tutorial locations around the city, including Kota Tua, Grogol and Gambir. The organization is open to taking volunteers from a wide variety of backgrounds. To learn more about the program and their schedules visit http://sahabatanak.org/en.html or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yayasan Wisma Cheshire
Yayasan Wisma Cheshire is a residential, vocational training program for adult men and women with mobility disabilities located in Cilandak, South Jakarta. New volunteers are constantly needed to assist with teaching English and computer skills, improving vocational skills, designing community outreach programmes and much more. For more info visit and to find out how to volunteer, visit: wismacheshire.com/donate.html
If you know of any other charitable organizations looking for volunteers in Jakarta, please let our readers know in the comments to this story on our Facebook page.
A version of this article is available in Bahasa Indonesia at our sister site Coconuts Indonesia.