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August Bamboo News - Green School International Newsletter

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  • Clive Elwell
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    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 5, 2013

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      Table of Contents

      A Note from Our Co-Founder

      Welcome New Families


      September Green School Educator Course 


      Calling Gardeners and Nature Explorers: Rice Planting at Green Camp

      Awesome Summer Camps: Be Part of the eco-solution

      Amazing Living in Bali Course


      Soulshine Festival featuring Michael Franti at Green School


      Green School Team Visits Australia 


      Green School Gives Back: John Fawcett Foundation 


      Begawan Foundation Update

      Student Stories

      Although Green School has been closed for the summer break for the past 2 months, the campus has been buzzing with activity at Green Camp!


      Green Camp students are growing our gardens, one seed at a time!

      Ten spectacular students got their hands deep into Permaculture principles at Green Camp recently.  The students, taking part in a one-of-a-kind Green Leaders Journey program at Green Camp, built a small bamboo nursery complete with bamboo seed-starting trays.  Working alongside a Balinese expert and our own Green Camp team, they learned all about what it takes to germinate seeds and help seedlings be nourished organically.  Thanks to their hard work building the nursery, soon our incoming Green Campers will be able to try their green thumbs and hands at growing new sustainable food species for Balinese gardens!

      Students at Green Camp’s Green Leader’s Journey shredding legume plants to be fermented: this will provide an important source of nutrients for other young plants we will be growing at the new bamboo nursery.

      Students deep into the design-and-build action making the new bamboo nursery behind the Compost Center 


      Tri Hita Karana festival

      The students participating in Green Camp’s Green Leader’s Journey decided to organize a festival as the finale of their camp experience. Luca, one of the ten Green Leaders, said, “We hosted a Tri Hita Karana festival.  It was a festival to raise awareness about the Balinese culture and garbage and recycling in Bali.  We organized a Soccer tournament with 6 teams; a cultural cooking club who cook Balinese dishes; a Kecak dance done by the local kids; live music…” and more!  Amazing what ten kids and inspired supporters can do!  The Green Campers made sure that the whole Balinese community was welcomed to the festival, going door-to-door around our neighborhood to explore our kampung (neighborhood), invite everyone to come, and share cultural and environmental inspiration face-to-face.

      Green SuperCamp: Another life-changing year!

      More than 120 students from around the world participated in the Junior and Senior Forums of Green SuperCamp in July. The campers gained life-changing personal leadership skills, academic acceleration, and environmental stewardship values.

      Green SuperCamp will return to Green School Bali next July, but will also take place in Victoria, Australia on September 27-October 6 and in April 2014. Please see www.greensupercamp.com.au for more information.

      Recent Blogs About Green School









      A Note from Our Co-Founder 

      It's summer in Bali, the very best part of the year. It’s much better to leave in February than in the summer. The nights are cool, the days are long. We've been having intermittent rain because the weather pattern seems to have completely gone mad. But we planted rice the other day with some kids from Green Camp. 

      I went with my daughter Chiara twice to do the EYE walk for the John Fawcett Foundation and she raised enough money to do 29 cataracts surgeries. 

      I had the pleasure of visiting China. They have the most beautiful hills and rice fields ever. But it makes me happy to be living in Bali in an intact culture. That's why I hope we're all here.


      Melissa Abdo has arrived to run Green Camp. I'm super excited about that possibility. Her commitment is very strong to the lives of our young people and adults alike.

      I'm doing my Living in Bali course this fall. It's going to be a lot of fun. It's got me thinking about lots of things that I haven't thought about for a while. We're going to get dirty and learn things together. It's very exciting. Get dirty, get washed, get blessed. It'll be an eight week course, I'm hoping it will grow into some very active group in the school and some very incredible projects will be kickstarted through it.

      I'm off now to the mountains in Ladakh. Probably the most beautiful and peaceful place on Earth. I'll be back in the middle of August, recharged and energized for more fun at Green School.




      P.S. Everything I'm inspired by is at www.johnbali.com; send any comments to john@... 

      We are thrilled to welcome 113 new students to Green School when our first term begins this month on August 20.  Nearly 60 new families from more than 20 countries will be joining the Green School community. In anticipation of making 2013-2014 Green School’s best year yet, new families will be welcomed with a series of fun orientation activities including Co-founder John Hardy’s very hands-on Living in Bali eight week course. 

      We have 16 new Balinese scholarship students beginning this term! We are so grateful to the many generous friends and supporters of our Indonesian Scholarship Fund who have made it possible for these children from the local communities to experience the education that Green School offers.

      We appreciate your ongoing support of our local scholars and ask that you continue to support these students in their education at Green School—you can donate by clicking below:


      This September, we will be running our 2nd Green School Educator Course, which will be specifically tailored for Early Years and Primary School teachers and administrators from around the world. Participants will spend 3 days learning about the Green School pedagogy while staying overnight in our Green Camp accommodations. The course will be led by Green School teachers, providing our participants with an enriching educational experience. Through this engaging, experiential course, participants will not only learn about the theory of our pedagogy but also experience it in practice. Each participant will leave with an understanding of our Early Years and Primary School programs as well as with their own toolbox of innovative teaching strategies to bring home.


      Dates: September 27 – 29, 2013                   

      Location: Green School, Bali

      Cost: $497 - Price includes course and accommodation

      Please note: We will be offering 5 scholarships to Indonesian teachers.


      Registration Opens August 7th! Be sure to register early as our June course sold out weeks before the event.  For more information about the course and to register, go to: 


      Recently Green Campers were thrilled to find ourselves with muddy feet and happy hearts, knee deep in mud amidst a stunning rice paddy hillside… whew!  Rice planting season (which happens a few times a year here in Bali) has arrived!  This means that campers joining us in August will get the chance to learn about organic gardening by experiencing it hands-on for themselves.  We will be exploring hidden pathways through the jungle and across rivers to join in the rice-planting action this August, among other adventures going on at Green Camp this summer.  Come join us, we still have a few camps open!

      Details: 3 Day Green Discovery Camps in Bali.  Kids ages 9 - 12, join the adventure!

      Dates: Aug 2 - 4, 13 - 15, 16 - 18, 20 – 22

      Register via: info@... Subject Line: August Discovery 

      Join us for a summer camp that is not only ultra-fun in the Bali sun, but one where you can be part of the eco-solution!  Young people and kids from around the world are joining us for week-long stays at Green Camp, where activities flow from learning about the water cycle by exploring Bali’s rice paddies- to tubing in the Ayung river… To adventuring around Bali, while changing how we treat and recycle our trash along the way… From practicing organic agriculture and learning to climb coconut palms (and discovering all the amazing Balinese uses of the coconut tree!) – and then cooling off after a fun day in spring-fed pools.  Check out the stories our campers are telling to learn more about how we are having fun while making a positive real-world difference at Green Camp. 


      Details: 5 Day Green Discovery Camps in Bali.  Kids ages 9 - 12, join the adventure!

      Dates: Aug 19 - 23, Aug 26 - 30

      Register via: info@... Subject Line: August Discovery

      How good can living in Bali get?  Join us and find out!  Our Living in Bali course- a brainchild of our co-founder- will focus on giving you practical information through unforgettable experiences, and sharing tangible ways you can help to give good back. We will cover all kinds of invaluable practical, cultural, social, & other info while taking you to Bali’s best spots – both around our local community & the entire island.  To help you give good back to Bali, we will share tangible ways for you to become part of effective groups working on several “give good back” topics – so you can find the one that fits you.

      This is a rare opportunity for you – especially for new GS families and teachers – to get to know the island from those who, arguably, know it best – the Balinese themselves.  Guided by our co-founder, whose experience in Bali goes back nearly three decades, it is sure to be an unforgettable introduction to Bali. For parents taking the Living in Bali course, we will also have opportunities for your kids to be taken care of by our team, and enjoy some awesome eco-adventures all their own at our Green Camp, while you are enjoying in the LIB course.  

      Details: Living in Bali Course, for new Green School families & teachers

      8 weeks (weekly course meetings and amazing activities) with an introductory Genesis Tour of Green School on Thurs, Aug 22. at 2:30 pm, followed by a tour of Ibuku, the company that designed & built Green School, and finally a beautiful Balinese dinner in nearby Green Village. 

      Contact: info@... Subject line: Living in Bali RSVP

      Note: Only a limited number of spots are still available, so RSVP EARLY for the Aug 22 Course Intro, Tour, & Dinner to ensure you will get one of them!

      Musician, poet, and social activist Michael Franti has announced the two-day Soulshine Festival to be held at on the grounds of Green School on December 27 and 28, 2013. The music and environmental festival is dedicated to sustainability for Bali and the world and will benefit Bumi Sehat, natural birthing clinics in Bali and Aceh, Indonesia, as well as Green School’s Indonesian Scholarship Fund.

      “The Soulshine Festival is about coming together to celebrate life—the life of our planet—and the power we all have to make a difference,” said Franti. “Come and join us for a magical time in Bali.”

      The Soulshine Festival aims to “educate, enlighten, and inspire.” The main stage of musical artists will feature performances by Michael Franti and Spearhead as well as Nahko, Ethan Tucker, Trevor Hall and more artists to be announced. In addition, the Soulshine Festival will also feature an environmentally-themed series of award-winning speakers and films, morning yoga, an eco Kids Zone, vendors and food booths, and social and environmental organizations tables and forums. Limited on-site accommodation in Green Camp yurts will be available.


      “I'm excited to share two days of family-friendly music and inspiring environmental activities in one of the most stunning locations in Bali, the amazing Green School,” said Franti. 
      Tickets are on sale at an Early Bird Discount price until September 1.


      Don’t miss this very special event; tickets are limited and will sell out fast.

      While back in Australia on holiday this July, a team from the school shared the Green School story with information sessions in Melbourne, Byron Bay, Brisbane and the Gold Coast.


      Shaun McGurgan, Curriculum Manager, visited Parkdale Secondary College in Melbourne where teacher Tiffany Newman uses Green School as an example in her lessons on sustainability. Shaun then joined Kaia and Dan Roman from the Green School Global team, along with Grade 9 student Toby King, for several lively information nights with packed audiences of teachers and parents in Brisbane, Byron Bay and the Gold Coast. More than 400 people attended the events, which took place at the EcoCentre at Griffith University in Brisbane, the Crystal Castl in Mullumbimby, and the EcoVillage in Currumbin.


      The community radio station in Byron Bay produced this sound portrait of the information night at the Crystal Castle:


      The John Fawcett Foundation is a humanitarian foundation whose mobile eye clinics offer cataract surgery free of charge for people in the villages of Bali. There are over 4 million blind people in Indonesia and over 3 million of these are cataract blind, a condition which is curable in most cases. However for most Indonesians the cost of a cataract operation is far beyond their financial capacity and they remain blind throughout their lives.

      Green School adopted a mobile eye clinic mission to our local village of Sibang Kaja, where a team from the John Fawcett Foundation provided eye screening for an estimated 500 men, women and children, free eye glasses for patients assessed to need them, eye treatment for minor eye disorders, as well as free cataract surgeries and post-operative care. Nearly 400 elementary‐aged school children at the local public schools also received eye checks and free glasses if they needed them.

      Green School middle school students observed and assisted with the mobile eye clinic, and were even able to witness several patients regaining their sight, many after decades of blindness.

      ©Mehd Halaouate, Begawan Foundation

      Thinking Green has been our focus from the inception of our foundation and today it is even more important to find ways in which to step it up a notch. As mentioned in a previous update, our Bali starlings nests made from Bamboo, a more environmental friendly alternative to plywood, have proved to be a success.

      We have now started composting the waste from our bird food,using banana and papaya skins to enrich the soil for the banana plants we have in our center - a full circle. Previously we gave the waste to the pigs and the cows but as these animals have now been moved away from our location we decided to start composting instead.

      Our starlings are thriving with several new arrivals to increase our population of these precious creatures. We are still undertaking our search for safe places for our future releases; this is taking a longer time than expected but this a process we are not giving up on. We will bring back Bali Starlings to Bali and the time schedule for this will be linked and rely entirely on the successful involvement of all the major players in this program starting with the local villages and the local authorities, our actual and future associates and last but not least the public both domestic and foreign. Their understanding about the value and importance of saving this species is essential.

      We cannot do this on our own. We may be successful in increasing the population in our breeding center but the release process can only be achieved if all of us involved strive towards the same goal, having Bali starlings flying free and breeding once again in mainland Bali and not only in Bali Barat National Park. The successful addition we are blessed with in the Green School grounds in Sibang is a good indication that the birds are adapting to a new environment and doing their part, now it is up to us humans to do ours.

      For more information on the Begawan Foundation, visit their website by clicking on the image below:



      Or follow them on Facebook by clicking on the logo below:

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      Green School
      Jalan Raya Sibang Kaja
      Abiansemal, Bali 80352

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