The Jakarta Post
Coordinator of Sokong coconut farmers community Raden Sukrati (left) poses for a picture with Coconesia founder Marta Jesionowska (right). (JP/Panca Nugraha)
Two foreigners from Poland and Slovenia organized a tree adoption project in Sokong village, North Lombok, to improve the living conditions of residents following the Lombok earthquake in 2018.
The program, dubbed Coconesia, allows people across the world to adopt a coconut tree in North Lombok. The money will be used to help coconut farmers in Sokong, as well as to rebuild the village’s community center that was destroyed by the quake.
One of the founders, Marta Jesionowska from Poland, said she organized the program because of her sympathy toward the earthquake victims.
Marta, along with Danica Badovinac from Slovenia, teamed up to create the program.
“There are many beautiful coconut trees in North Lombok. We will give people across the globe an opportunity to adopt these trees for six months or a year,” Marta said on Monday.
Furthermore, the tree adopters will also receive various products such as virgin coconut oil, coconut sugar, traditional coconut oil, as well as handicrafts from coconut shells.
“So imagine owning a coconut tree in Lombok even if you live in another country like the States or Europe. You can also enjoy a variety of products from your own coconut tree,” Marta said.
The Coconesia program was started after Marta and Daniac met Raden Sukrati, who coordinates virgin coconut oil production in Sokong. Raden, along with the women in the area, produces one of the best virgin coconut oils in Indonesia. They also produce other coconut products such as handicrafts and sugar.
Unfortunately, the earthquake destroyed all of their efforts because all of the locals’ houses were destroyed, as well as the production center.
When asked about Coconesia, Raden said he really appreciated the effort to help the farmers.
“We hope the Coconesia program will run smoothly because so far we are still lacking support from the government,” he said on Monday.
Raden also said the locals had been producing traditional coconut oil, coconut sugar and simple handicrafts since 2012. Over time, the farmers were able to produce virgin coconut oil and soap with modern packaging. In 2016, there were 12 coconut farmer groups that produced coconut-based products.
“We have Lombok VCO, which has been branded halal and gained a certificate from the Indonesia Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM). But we had to start everything from zero after the 2018 earthquake,” Raden said. (dpk)