Wonogiri – Becoming a figure of change can be done by anyone, old and young. As long as we have determination and strong will to be able to contribute and give benefits for our surrounding, the change will certainly be realized. This is exactly what Mbah Sadiman did. This middle-aged man of 66 years old became an important figure for the greening of Gendol Hill, located in Geneng Village, Bulukerto Subdistrict, Wonogiri Regency, Central Java.
Since 1995, Mbah Sadiman has planted thousands of trees in Gendol Hill on approximately 100 hectares land. His effort were not in vain. Now, the people of Geneng Village have felt the benefits. More than 600 village residents are able to access clean water without fear of drought. Mbah Sadiman’s step gave inspiration to various parties, including KORINDO. On November 29th 2015, KORINDO along with a number of stakeholders, namely Regional Government, Students, Paguyuban Budiasi, NGO Gerakan Bumi Hijau, The Indonesian National Armed Forces (TNI), Indonesian National Police (Polri), and Mbah Sadiman himself, held a planting action of 7,000 tree seedlings, consisting of 4,000 seedlings of beringin trees and 3,000 seedlings of fruit trees, which are avocados and durians.
Now, 3 years passed, KORINDO had the initiative to see the development of the 7,000 tree seedlings planted. Represented by the General Secretary of KORINDO Foundation, Mr. Yin Sun Hyeong, on July 28th 2018, KORINDO visited the humble home of Mbah Sadiman in Geneng Village. Following a brief courteous get-together in Mbah Sadiman’s home, approaching the afternoon, Mr. Yin Sun Hyong was invited to Gendol Hill and see by himself the growth of the tree seedlings. As a result, the seedlings of beringin trees are growing lush and large with tree heights reaching 3-5 meters on average. The beringin trees, planted last 2015, have become a clear water spring as a source of clean water for people living around the hill. In addition, beringin trees also serve as absorber and storage of rainwater, so when the dry season comes, clear water will still be available in Gendol Hill.
Meanwhile, fruit plants, particularly durian trees, have now produced fruits and are predicted to harvest by the end of this year as a result of the joint tree planting in 2015. As a next step, KORINDO is trying to build cooperation with Gerakan Hijau Bumi, an NGO that helped Mbah Sadiman in empowering the forest in Gendol Hill, to create an agri-tourism area in Bulukerto. The agri-tourism area will be a source of economic improvement for the people in Bulukerto, through the sales of fruit and vegetable produce and also nature tourism in the form of camping ground and natural water spring in the top of Gendol Hill.
When asked about the obstacles faced by Mbah Sadiman in taking care of the plants in Gendol Hill, he mentioned about maintenance. “Well-maintained beringin trees grow large, but there are still many that are not maintained. The same goes to fruit trees. Some are not maintained, but the well-maintained ones grow nicely”. In addition to maintenance, the issue of fertilizer also become an obstacle faced by Mbah Sadiman, particularly for fruit trees. This is because fruit trees need a lot of fertilizer so they can grow lush and nicely. The issue of fertilizer received a fast response from KORINDO by providing aid in the form of 16 sacks of maintenance fertilizer for beringin trees and fruit trees.
“I thank KORINDO for the aid given. I pray for KORINDO so its business may be more successful, and could contribute in environmental greening program, here or elsewhere,” said Mbah Sadiman.
Mr. Yi Sun Hyeong hoped that this could ease Mbah Sadiman’s effort to overcome the maintenance issue. He was also amazed by Mbah Sadiman’s persistence and diligence in changing the face of Gendol Hill around his home, that was previously dry, and now has becoming beautiful and blessed with abundant water supply. The hill area also became more productive with planted fruits, such as durians and avocados, to be used as additional income for people.