Thanks for the checking out the blog for this Global Leadership Adventures program!
This blog is for the Bali split session starting July 19, 2022, which includes both the 14-day and the 21-day student group.
Here are a few things you can expect:
- We typically receive 2-3 blog posts per week here at GLA Headquarters from our program staff and students, so please don’t be alarmed if you don’t see a blog post daily – that’s totally normal.
- Blog updates sent on weekends may not be posted until Monday.
- Due to many factors, including but not limited to internet accessibility, photos may not always be available to post onto the blog. Sometimes onsite program staff are only able to send text back to Headquarters, where our team updates the blog.
Cell Phone Policy: The GLA cell phone policy is currently in place this summer to help foster meaningful connections between students. This means your student’s phone will be collected every day and returned to them throughout the program during designated spaces of time we call ‘tech time’. Actual tech times and regularity will vary greatly by program location. During designated ‘tech time’, your student may use their phones as they wish. Please note that your student may not always choose to use this time to get a hold of their parents. If you are not hearing directly from your student each day, you can assume that no news is good news! We strongly recommend you follow the blog to follow your students’ experience without talking to them every day. If you are a parent and would like to get in touch with your student directly, you can call us at +1-619-758-3031 and we can set up a formal time for you to connect with your student.
Thank you for your patience and understanding, and we hope you enjoy following along on these unforgettable adventures.
For frequently asked questions about the blogs, please visit our Program Blog FAQ page.
-The Global Leadership Adventures HQ Team
BLOG POST FOR JULY 19
Hi families! After some very long travels all students have now arrived at homebase, had noodles, fried chicken, rice, tempe, and other local cuisines for dinner, and are getting ready for bed hoping to sleep away any jet lag! Excited for orientation day tomorrow and to get this awesome program started!
We can’t wait to keep you in the loop as we go! Stay tuned for the first student blog post tomorrow!
Your staff–Beni Musha Ary Wiwik Vik and Lauren! 😀
BLOG POST FOR JULY 20
YO wassup its Saskia here! We started off day 1 with an orientation learning about the Bali culture such as learning how to tie a sarong and some of the basic Balinese phrases to survive our trip here in Bali. We also used acting skills to learn about the code of conduct while we are here. Then we went on to the amazing race where we explored our town talking to the local Balinese people where we saw guys climbing up coconut trees and showed some local Balinese kids how to play rock paper scissors. After finishing we came back to the compound where we all put on our sarongs to take part in Sisya Upanayan, a welcoming ceremony from the family and priest.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 21
Hey y’all, it’s Ella! Today we had an early breakfast because we had a full day of adventure. We went to an herbal walk for about an hour and a half, and we learned about how the Bali people use natural items for health care and in everyday lives. We got to go to the herbal store after and have tea and buy some natural remedies and cosmetics. Then we got back into the bus to drive to the water temple and enjoyed a fishpond and a traditional ceremony with a priest. Then back to the bus to drive to lunch on top of a mountain where we enjoyed an amazing buffet. We drove back home and everyone went to nap before getting ready to meet the Prince of Ubud. We had a tour of the palace and learned so much about Balinese culture, then enjoyed a nice dinner with the Prince and asked him some questions about his culture and role.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 22
Hi everyone, it’s Elizabeth! We started the morning with a lively debate led by Thomas and Alana about the effect of tourism on Balinese people’s cultural identity and education. Later in the day, we visited the local Bale Banjar, which is a community center where the village gathers. It is the smallest form of Balinese government. There, we carved our names into pieces of wood and learned how to make offerings. We also learned about the traditional musical aspects of the culture, which was learning how to dance the Legong dance and playing traditional music. Then, we headed back to the home base and had a meet and greet with local medical students. They are young students who are studying to become nurses. We got to know them to prepare for a full day of service in the village tomorrow.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 23
Hey guys, it’s Alana! We started off this cloudy Saturday morning with a bit of tech time to catch up with family and friends and a set of games that allowed us to explore our respective similarities and differences as a group and get to know each other even better. Out morning excursion consisted of us visiting the Bumi Sehat maternal health clinic, a space dedicated to providing women and expecting mothers the care that they deserve when giving birth for free, and chatting with its founder, Robin Lim. Meeting with her was an absolutely amazing experience, as hearing her story and insights on maternal healthcare worldwide were truly inspiring and made for an poignant, crucial commentary of a viewpoint that is often swept under the rug.
After leaving, we arrived back at home base and enjoyed homemade lunch! We launched out soon after to embark on our first service day with the medical students! Getting to go around to community members and provide them with free health checks was a novel experience, but one that was valuable nonetheless. Being in the community meant that we had chances to interact with those who weren’t necessarily getting health checks, including curious passersby and equally as curious children who were more than willing to communicate with us despite the language barrier. On our way back home, we got our first taste of more casual Balinese cuisine in the form of a very fun visit to the Indomaret (their version of a 7-Eleven)! The night concluded with a performance of Balinese Legong dance, a dance characterized by rapid hand and eye movements (which is much harder than it seems, as we learned yesterday!). I truly enjoyed our outings today and can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 24
Yo yo yo its Valentina here, your leader for today. So basically we started the day off with an inspiring journal write up later on following to a banging visit (get it banging because we banged on the drums) to Senang Hati ( a sustainable home for people with physical disabilities) . There we had lunch, which was very nice, surely recommend you try mi goreng. Then we all bought loads of bracelets that the people from the Senang Hati community made, hopefully your child got one for you. Then we went for our second service day which was once again very inspiring and personally my favorite part of this trip. Immediately after that we went onto the bus to reach our next destination which was a very nice restaurant that served us nice pink fruity drinks. Lastly, we all went shopping at some on the markets nearby and we learned the great skill of bargaining. Thanks and goodnight.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 25
What’s up guys, its your local leader here, Chase, back with a great blog post. Today we woke up, did an anonymous survey, and got in the buses on the way to the beach. On the way, we stopped for lunch (some great noodles), and then went to the water temple, where Alex and I swung together on the strange bench contraption while blasting Don’t Stop Me Now (Queen), while the others were being normal humans and looking at some fish. We then went to Bali Sehat and watched a very interesting tour guide show us the clinic, and then play us some nice sleep-inducing music while showing us some pictures. Then we went back to our villas on the beach, which are great, and took our swimming tests, which were fun to take. Following that, we swam in the ocean and pool again, and went to dinner (some more great noodles [I like noodles there’s other food don’t worry]). That pretty much concludes our day, except for the fact that Sasha spontaneously learned how to do a front flip, which was crazy to watch.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 26
Hey everyone, it’s Sasha with yet another blog post. Today, we woke up pretty darn early (well by my standards) for the amazing opportunity of going on a sunrise boat ride which ended with a super cool snorkeling session. Don’t worry there are a bunch of photos of the beautiful sunrise. After that, we had some time off to enjoy our amazing resort, which included pool time, beach time, playing volleyball, playing chess, and playing ping pong oh and playing pool and tech time. Then we went out to a wonderful restaurant where we enjoyed another great meal and iced tea.
Afterwards, we went to volunteer at Bali Sehat (the place we visited yesterday). We split into groups and went into chosen houses to deliver food, vitamins and do a basic health check before going to Bali Sehat’s catfish farm. To explain – Bali Sehat fully embraces how it’s better to teach someone to fish rather than to just give them a fish or two. The visits to peoples’ homes were a shock to the system, reminding us of our privilege in life and further showed us the resilience humans have in them. After returning to our new home base, we had more free time, before we got a special treat – burgers! Finally, we ended the day with some pool time and a Leader of the Day game.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 27
Heyy its Kelsey with a new blog post. We started out our day with a nice breakfast and then the first group headed out to lipah in amed and then took a break to hang out and chill by the pool. After that we got back in the water and saw many different animals and beautiful coral. I think my favorite part was probably seeing these starfish that were blue! The water was very pretty and not too cold which I was surprised by. After everyone was done with scuba we went back to the hotel and had some free time until we did chow circle and talked about our favorite part of the trip so far. We then played a game and went and had dinner. After that we had tech time and then went to bed. It was kinda sad that was our last excursion in amed for the trip but you know its fine because I really enjoyed it. Shoutout to wiwik, ary, musha, lauren, and vik for making everything happen.
Until the next post <3 kels.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 28
Written by Sofia
Have you ever gone trekking over the beautiful scenery of rice paddies? Well, regardless of whether you have or haven’t, our group sure has! After packing up our bags and (gently) tossing them into the back of the bus, we were taken to the beginning of a nice hiking trail through the mountains of a village. Throughout our trekking, we made ‘pit stops’ at the homes of the villagers to learn more about each of their crafts. The crafts we learnt about included but were not limited to the art of weaving, managing bees, colour-changing tea, and lontar 101 (palm leaf carving). We also made a longer stop at the temple of the Tenganan village where we had a nutritious lunch packed with spicy chicken (for those who didn’t order the vegetarian lunch at least). After we went back & finished with our arduous trekking, we even had some time to shop around at shops stationed near the end of the trail.
Now, while I won’t bore you with the details of the long (and I say this with the utmost emphasis—looooooong) bus ride back to the home base, I will say that we had tech time then so no need to worry that your kids died of boredom (kidding…we’ve been socializing perfectly fine without electronics thus far)! Oh, and we got to do a snack run (Indomaret saves lives) & money exchange on the way!
But of course, the day didn’t end there—the staff (they’re wonderful…especially Ary—thanks for the great food preparations! She’s actually watching me intently as I write this haha. The other staff are all super duper cool as well though—shoutout to Vik, Lauren, Wiwik, and Musha!) prepared a surprise full of singing and some screaming (…okay lots of screaming—but the 2000s songs made it VERY justifiable). Can you guess where we went? Indeed, it was karaoke! Sadly, we had to leave our water bottles at home as per the karaoke place policy (a smart marketing scheme if you ask me; limiting the supply!) but they had a menu packed with everything from colorful mocktails to classic chocolate milkshakes, so we didn’t get too dehydrated (probably).
By the way, it has come to my attention by reading the other blog posts on the bus ride back from the hotel that you all might not know how the people who are writing these blog posts are decided: Essentially, a Leader-of-the-Day is pulled out of a bag, and that Leader-of-the-Day is tasked with the duties of carrying the medical bag, coming up with the daily ponder, leading various games, and of course…writing a blog post culminating the day (clearly the best, most exciting part)! Hopefully that satiates your curiosity (assuming that there wasn’t any secret email sent to parents already detailing this…if so, apologies for the overlap!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 29
Hello everyone! Katherine here reporting on day 11 of the amazing GLA Bali trip! Today, we had the privilege of visiting an authentic Balinese healer where we were able to hear her amazing story of how the spirits chose her at a young age to become a healer for the Balinese people. She even stated that the spirits are still with her to tell her what specific concoctions she needs to make in order to help sick patients! At the end she gave volunteers aura readings to end the visit with a total spiritual bang! Later we all went on the 4th service visit with the Balinese medical students to touch up on the last houses that haven’t been visited. This however was my first service visit due having Covid on the previous visits. Even from just taking part in one of the service visits, I was appreciative of how passionate the medical students were with helping the community and how invested my group was with aiding and caring to people receiving a checkup. The service visit was an amazing experience for me to be able to express my passion for helping others in need and has inspired me to do more for my community when I get back home. I genuinely love Bali and have grown really attached to the other GLA/Bali institute staff and the other students. I am so grateful for their kindness and compassion throughout my entire experience in Bali. Because of all them, I have gained amazing new memories and friends that I will treasure for the rest of my days <3.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 30
Hi guys, it’s Mariana! We started day 12 with more preparation to teach elementary students at a local school. The three topics were exercise, hygiene, and nutrition. Thankfully, all the groups had an amazing time interacting with the children, and it truly was a memorable experience. Shortly after we headed over to a Beeswax/Bamboo workshop, where we made Beeswax bags and cloths. When applying the beeswax to the cloth, it was quickly learned that if you put too much, the result will not be desirable. We were also able to break beeswax, which was harder than I thought. As all things, it turned into a competition to who could break the beeswax; personally, I broke seven pieces. After many girls got their hair braided-by yours truly- we played a rigorous game of futsal (the Indonesian style of soccer) where the white team (Lily, Ella, Alejandro, and I) dominated.
So sad to be leaving Bali in 2 days, but I can’t wait to see everyone in NY!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 31
Hey guys this is your favorite Spanish guy, Alejandro. Today, we went to the beach to surf and to go to the beach we had to wake up at 5:30 am which was not enjoyable. Because of that everyone was exhausted today. However, surfing was a good experience for all of us being that we all had fun; after surfing, we went to a shopping center to buy some gifts for our families and also to spend all of our Indonesian money. Instead of having the traditional rice and chicken for dinner, we were all surprised to have individual margarita pizzas since this is the last day for the people on the 14 day program. To properly say our final goodbyes, we all participated in a traditional Indonesian ceremony. At the end of the ceremony, there was a web of yarn that was connected by all of us, and we cut off smaller parts and made traditional bracelets.