Made Rohani is the manager of the Ganesha bookshops in Ubud and Kerobokan and a volunteer for a number of foundations. The 34-year-old from Belang, Singapadu, shared her day with The Bali Times

Reading is my college.

In the morning I do all the normal Balinese things. Sometimes I go to the market and then I cook and do some cleaning and get ready for work.

I start work at Ganesha bookshop at 9am and usually work there until 6pm, but my boss recently opened a second shop, in Kerobokan, so I’m working there from 5pm until 11pm at the moment. It’s a seriously long day and as I’m managing both stores I have a lot of work to do.

I do love the job, though. I learn a lot and also get time to read a lot, which is very important to me. Reading is my college and the shops are never so busy that I don’t get any time to read during the day. I also get to talk to people from all over the world, which is definitely one of the perks of the job.

I was born into a very large family of three sisters and three brothers and my father wasn’t able to pay for me to go to school. I want to be able to help other children who are raised in similar situations. Working at Ganesha has allowed me to see life a bit differently than other Balinese people.

When I went to Ubud to work and moved away from my family, my perspective on life and education was very much changed and I’ve been teaching myself the things I want to know ever since.

I’ve also had my eyes opened by trips to Australia and recently, Singapore, which most Balinese don’t ever get to experience. I really liked Singapore and am lucky to have friends who want me to experience places outside Bali and are able to pay for me to go.

When I’m not working, which is not very often at the moment, I volunteer for Roteract, helping with their social days and going to meetings twice a month. I mostly do community service and help out at their learning centres. We’ve also been working with Senyum Foundation over the past couple of years, fundraising for children who need surgery to repair facial disfigurements. Just last week one of the patients underwent a successful surgery, which was great news.

Every Sunday I visit my village in Singapadu to run classes and work with the kids at the primary school before I go home to visit my family. My foundation that runs dance and language classes on Sundays is called Banjar Saraswati and we have people from Japan, Singapore, and Malaysia working with us now.

So far we’ve managed to build two libraries, in Samu and Saba villages, but we’re looking for volunteers to read to the kids and keep the libraries organized.

We definitely have more plans in the works to help the kids in Belang and the surrounding villages, because they don’t always get the help and education they need to really be the best they can.

In my very rare free time, I go out with friends, like Dennis Colbert from Bali Children’s Foundation, who I’ve known for years and have helped with building learning centres in Pejeng, Belang and Bungkasa.

I am very busy but it’s so much better to be busy than staying at home all the time, doing housework and staying quiet.

Filed under: One Day

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