“I used to own a house on land, but coastal erosion took it away, and now I prefer to live traditionally in a wooden house over the sea,” said 74-year-old Yohana, welcoming us to her home. “Though I cannot live in a concrete building, this is more than enough, and safer for the family.” She pointed to the bridge linking her sea house to the beach: “Be careful when walking on that bridge, it’s not nailed properly!”
In the small house there are three generations: her adult children, with their own children, still live with her. Besides being a good grandma, Yohana also supports the family income by making handwoven bags using natural materials. She sells the bag for IDR Rp. 50,000 (around US$4), and weekly she can produce three to four bags. This income is very important for her family.
Yohana recently bought a d.light S20 solar light from Pak Makusi’s Tech Kiosk on Gam Island. “When I have to work at night, I need brighter lighting. Because the d.light S20 is a portable lamp, I can take it anywhere I want. Whenever I need better lighting for weaving, I can just pull it closer. The battery also lasts a very long time, I just need to put it under the sun during the day and use it casually at night. It saves so much money compared to using diesel fuel in a generator,” Yohana explained.