bali, indonesia: kopernik
One organization that I found and set-up a meeting for in Bali was Kopernik- an NGO connecting simple technology with communities in need. I met with Ina, the Communications Officer and she graciously walked me through the amazing work Kopernik is doing at the head office in Bali. I realized that when I met with Ina, very few of my @best.world.ever findings have been focused around technology. I started to observe and analyze if this was due to my personal interests or the general landscape in the countries I have visited.
Kopernik looks to reduce poverty by identifying innovative solutions to problems in smaller, rural communities. The core of Kopernik is based on trial and error and experimentation. I absolutely love this mindset and the co-founders cover it well in ted talks on their web site (link below!). I love this mindset because it is not expecting everything to be perfect. It is rather being open to mistakes in order to find solutions that work the best and even better in the long run.
Kopernik works across the globe, however, a majority of projects are based in Southeast Asia. These projects are based on a variety of topics that ladder up to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). One example of a project that Ina covered was "Wonder Woman" in Indonesia. Kopernik identified that many rural communities did not have access to light, making it difficult to run a business and run a home. Kopernik worked with women in the communities to sell portable solar lights to other woman to empower them to be able to operate their business and home more effectively.
Initiatives like this are what make Kopernik so great and their impact simple in thought but grand in impact. Furthermore, behind the highly impressive numbers (over 400,000 people served, over 99,000 technologies distributed and 26 countries reached), are the human stories and emotions. For each person impacted, that impact scales out and continues to impact the community.
At the end of our meeting, Ina walked me around to show me some of the amazing technologies. There were water filters, small solar panel phone chargers, small solar panel lights, self-adjustable glasses and much more. Each of these have either been sourced or created by the Kopernik team and then spread out into the communities. It is amazing the impact even one product can have on the well-being and success of an individual, family and community.
Some of the technologies- close up!!