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In Memoriam

Mostly at Bikabele Cares for Kids Inc, we have many happy and fond memories of our experiences with the children.  Every now and then, as in life, there are moments that truly break our hearts.

We'd like to dedicate this page to some truly special angels...

 
Suliyah - Forever in our Hearts, our beautiful girl

A little piece of each of our hearts was taken away, when we learnt of the sad passing of one of our very special and beautiful girls.

Putu "Suliyah" Somartini... taken way too soon, we believe to Dengue fever (November 2016).

Bikabele first met Suliyah in 2004.   In 2005, at age 12, Suliyah was chosen to be one of the first three children who joined the trial phase of our Hearing Aid Programme.  Bill, Kay & Leanne chose to personally sponsor Suliyah in this programme, so we became especially fond of her, and always spoilt her that little bit more than the other children, because we could.  Her younger brother, SemaraJaya, also later joined the programme and they both lived permanently at the orphanage school in Klungkung.

Their home village is on Bali's neighbouring island of Nusa Penida, and it was difficult for their father to afford for them to return home on a boat at any stage.  On rare occasions, he was able to visit the children.  But it was decided they should stay in Klungkung to get help with their hearing and some aided education, not available to them on their home island.

Suliyah was a character, quite reserved, but also quite strong in so many ways.  She always came to us with warm hugs whenever we visited, and was pleased to see we came back again.  She especially had a soft spot for Bill, and likewise, he for her.  Until one day he arrived sporting a beard, and then she made it very known that this was not a good thing.  No photos together when a beard is involved!  I'm not sure who was most upset, Suliyah, or Bill.  Anyway, Suliyah was extremely happy when we returned again a few days later and Bill was cleanly shaven, and they were able to be friends again - much to Bill's relief!
Bill gave Suliyah her first ever piece of proper silver jewellery, a love heart necklace, which she loved to wear. 

We have so many very fond memories of Suliyah, we've shared some pretty special times together.  We've watched Suliyah grow from a young girl to a beautiful young lady, watched her dancing her traditional Balinese dance many times, she with a quiet sense of pride.  She was also very clever at the art of making the offerings for Hindu ceremonies, which is an art in itself, and she of course had other talents as well, and worked hard to do her best always.   She had a great inner strength that we knew, or hoped, would lead her to a fulfilled life despite her disabilities.

When you have been visiting these kids to give them a little help along in life, 2, 3 or 4 times a year for 12 years or more, they truly become part of your heart.  When you personally sponsor them, just that little bit more so.

Earlier this year (2016), Suliyah and her brother, left the Panti Asuhan Semara Putra orphanage in Klungkung to return to their home island of Nusa Penida, having completed their studies.  When we learnt of this we were saddened, and actually discussed, one day we would do a visit to Nusa Penida and hopefully find Suliyah, to make sure her and her brother were ok, and that life was being kind to them.  Well.... not to be.  Well, not in the way we wished anyway.

We are heartbroken at Suliyah's passing.  She was our beautiful Bali daughter.
We offer sincere condolences to SemaraJaya and the family, and to all the children and carers who were Suliyah's family for so many years in Klungkung.

Suliyah, you were a very special and beautiful girl.  You will remain in our hearts forever and will be loved and missed always.  Rest peacefully our beautiful girl. ♥♥♥

Suliyah, kamu akan tetap di hati kami, kamu gadis yang cantik ♥♥♥



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Bikabele first met Putu Aditya Widhi Nugraha in July 2006 during one of their visits to Panti Asuhan Semara Putra orphanage in Klungkung, Bali.

At first, Aditya seemed quite a
shy young boy, and it was obvious along with his hearing disabilities we were informed about, that he had some other challenges in life also.   He became eligible and was sponsored to join Bikabele's Hearing Aid program during the latter part of 2006.

Aditya became affectionately known as "Michael Jackson" at the orphanage.   As we would meet with Ibu Made, the head carer at the Orphanage, we'd notice that Aditya would suddenly break out in a "Michael Jackson" dance, including the moonwalk, and he would capture everyone's attention with his wonderful dance moves and his gorgeous little grin on his face, and then just as quickly, realising everyone's eyes were on him, he'd slip quietly away into a corner.

A little boy with no hearing, yet obviously so taken by his favourite popstar's dance moves, that he'd learnt them, despite not hearing the music!   In his braver moments he would entertain us all with his other love....magic!   He loved to play little 
disappearing tricks with items laying around and had us all in laughter, then again, he'd slip away quietly into the background.  He was quite the little character who loved to entertain and create lots of smiles for those around him.

We do become very attached to the children at the orphanages who we endeavour to visit at least 3 or 4 times per year, and particularly those who are part of our Hearing Aid program, as we follow their progress and watch them develop in many ways.   During our visit to Bali in April 2010, we were extremely shocked and saddened to learn that our little Michael Jackson had passed away just 4 days prior to our visit to Semara Putra.   Such a precious little boy who is and will be sadly missed by us all.

Coincidently, the last day we had the pleasure of meeting this little boy, was the day of our Dance Festival for all the orphanage children, when we treated them all to a day in Tanjung Benoa together, with lots of fun and speed boat rides.  This was the same day little Aditya's pop idol, Michael Jackson, passed away.

Aditya's sponsor in the Hearing Aid Program had booked a trip to Bali for August 2010, and was looking forward to meeting Aditya and the other kids just 4 months later, sadly this meeting never happened.

Take a moment to watch the following slideshow: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uAOU_adL3XU and share in some of our memories of this beautiful boy who was taken way too early in life. 
Rest in Peace Michael Jackson (Aditya).
Istirahat di persik anak cantik, Semua cinta kita dari Bikabele.






In Loving Memory of Caleb and Spencer

The playground at Panti Asuhan Semara Putra in Klungkung was re-developed in October 2006 in memory of twin baby boys, Caleb & Spencer.   

"Providing rainbows and smiles to the world of disadvantaged, underprivileged and orphan children" - that's the grassroots of what Bikabele Cares for Kids (Inc) is really about.  And that's what the Caleb & Spencer Memorial Playground is achieving, for some very special kids.

"Children are a gift in this world".  What a true statement, and a message that was reiterated to Bikabele Cares for Kids from a wonderful Melbourne couple, Natalie and Jason, who so dearly dreamed of having a family.   We had met and formed a friendship with Natalie and Jason the week of our very first trip to the Klungkung orphanage, and they and their friends had made a cash donation to purchase all sorts of goodies for the children during our initial visit in 2003.

Eventually turning to the IVF programme, there was tremendous joy when Nat & Jason announced they were expecting twins.
Unfortunately though, not every story has a happy ending, and tragically, Natalie and Jason's excitement turned to devastation.

On 31st August 2005, little Caleb Edward was born at only 23 weeks and 1 days gestation. His fraternal twin, Spencer Ian arrived approximately 10 minutes later. Sadly, Spencer was stillborn.

Caleb weighed just 554 grams. As the hours passed by, his tiny body became too tired to function and Caleb passed away on 2nd September after a valiant 38 hour fight.
Caleb and Spencer were buried together on Wednesday 7th September 2005.

That same week, Natalie sat down and wrote to Bikabele, telling us of the tragic loss of their two little baby boys.  What we read, broke our hearts and more so when we also read where they wished to offer Bikabele a significant donation to help some needy children. Words could never express, not only our sadness for our friends at such a tragic loss, but our feelings in learning these two beautiful people whose dreams had just been totally shattered, yet here they were, still thinking about helping other needy children in their time of grieving.

Bikabele founders flew to Melbourne and caught up with Natalie and Jason and discussed building a "Memorial Playground for Caleb and Spencer" at the Panti Asuhan Semara Putra Orphanage for Disabled Children in KlungKung, Bali.

Our deepest sympathies went out to Natalie and Jason, along with our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to a truly inspirational couple who started the Memorial Playground fund with a substantial donation and left a lasting legacy with the children at KlungKung.

You can read the complete story about the special playground development here 

May the special memories of Caleb and Spencer forever live on, in the laughter of the children at Klungkung as they enjoy their playground facilities. ♥♥





The words below are written by Vibes' brother, Ray...

I would like to share the story of my brother Ian “Vibes” Murray’s trip to Bali and our visit to the orphanage, sponsored by Bikabele.

Vibes was a much loved member of the West Australian surfing community, earning his nickname from his amazing ability to pickup the Vibe of what was happening around him despite or perhaps because of the fact that he was profoundly deaf from birth.   Surfing from a young age at Cottesloe, Scarborough and later down south at Margaret River and Yallingup, opened a whole world to him, not usually available to a young deaf guy growing up in the 60's and became his life long passion.

In his later years he was instrumental in introducing many younger deaf guys to surfing and in establishing the Australian and International Deaf Board Riders Associations, helping to organize and competing in competitions that bought together deaf surfers from all over the world. You only need log onto www.deafsurf.org to get an idea of how this has grown.

Vibes was diagnosed with terminal cancer in late 2006 and told that he had only months to live.
Despite the devastating effect this had on his young family and friends, Vibes showed amazing strength, courage and acceptance of his situation, determined to spend as much time in the waves as he could, while he could.   Vibes had never had the opportunity to surf in Indonesia and it was something my wife and I wanted to give him before he died.   Unfortunately, by the time we got him there he no longer had the strength to surf, but we were able to get him out in local fishing boats at such places as Dreamland and Ulawatu and get the vibe of the waves at least.

We also wanted to take him to the orphanage we had heard about through our sister, who is one of the founding members of Bikabele. This is an orphanage for children with disabilities, with a number of them being deaf, so there was an obvious emotional connection there for us all.

That day at the orphanage is one that will stay in the memories of all of us who shared it.   The immediate bond that was established between Vibes and the children was quite fantastic.   They found a common language of laughter, play, sign language and gestures that went way beyond the usual restrictions of people of different languages and culture.   Being deaf made them part of the same culture and the children had a rare opportunity to meet a deaf person from another world with many more possibilities in life than any of them would normally expect.

To see a deaf person who could stand up in front of a room full of people and address them in such a confident and complete way, had an effect on them that was tangible.   The effect on Vibes was no less and I know that he saw in that day a vision of where his life might have lead had it not ended so early.

When we left, I asked Vibes if there was anything he would like us to do for the children in his name after he had gone, and he said he would like to see the work started by Bikabele continue and for as many deaf friends as possible visit and be involved.

Vibes died two months later.   His passing was magical.   One of his last wishes was to see the ocean one more time, which he did only hours before he passed away and he died with his feet on his favorite surfboard.

I ask you all on my brother's behalf to support Bikabele in the marvellous work it is doing, and not miss the chance to visit the orphanage if you are ever in Bali.  
Thank you, Ray

Rest in Peace Vibes.  Thank you for sharing the inspiration you gave us all so freely
Founded 8 August, 2003 Bikabele Cares for Kids Inc. A registered non-profit Community based Charity Organisation.
Registration No. A1012443P.Site Created By iTechnoweb.com
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