Kaliandra Sejati Foundation was founded by Atmadja Tjiptobiantoro, a Chinese Indonesia, a year after he retired, at the age of 53 in 1996, from the helm of PT Dwi Satrya Group of Companies, relinquishing his position as Group President Director, after having sold all his shares in the Group to his younger brother. This included shares in ICI Paints Indonesia.
Having considered that he had been fortunate with his life, he wanted to do something useful and meaningful, and decided to devote the rest of his life to share some of his good fortune with those who are less fortunate. Atmadja decided to build his home on the slopes of Mount Arjuna, although at that time he was offered a piece of land in Bali, which would be worth about 10x more in value. He chose to settle on the slopes of Mount Arjjuna as he felt that the surrounding communities needed help to improve their livelihoods. Mount Arjuna was also significant, as apart from its beauty, it is also the source of water supply to about 60% of the water needs for about 22 million people as well as habitats in East Java.
It was in 1997 that Kaliandra Sejati Foundation was formed. Also, to promote the rich Javanese culture and reminiscent of the Majapahit era, Kampung Bharatapura was developed, where the layout was reminiscent of the Majapahit era, and the buildings and cottages were designed using Javanese Architecture. Kaliandra became a centre for education of culture and nature. It developed into an eco-tourism resort, and further additions were made to the accommodation in the form of duplex bungalows further up the slopes of the Mountain. To complement the offerings of the resort, outbound, leadership
and team building programmes were developed, complete with high ropes course.
Cultural programmes such as teaching how to play the traditional Javanese musical instruments, Gamelan, was introduced together with art of batik painting and traditional Javanese dances. The intention of such a resort was to provide employment to the communities, and to generate income to fund the Foundation objectives, on a sustainable basis.
Actions taken by Kaliandra Sejati Foundation are illustrated the following examples:-
• A traditional Javanese Village set up at the Eco-Tourism resort, which largely employs the people from the villages. The buildings and cottages, even gardens and landscape are designed using Javanese Architecture. Programmes to promote the rich culture of East Java includes teaching of cultural dances, playing the Javanese Musical Instruments, batik printing using natural dyes, cooking of traditional foods, herbal drinks.
• All the plants, sculptures at our resort are given labels, providing information which includes the origins and some historical background.
• Mount Arjuna as a Tourism Area, with one of the Villages being declared as a Tourist Village
• Provide training for guides and mapping treks around Mount Arjuna so that there are choices of treks from one hour self guided treks to the more challenging 3 days trek up the mountain or around the mountain.
• Homestay Programmes
Conservation Projects including afforestration and reforestration, developing and implementing successfully the “Forest Parenting Concept” which is now adopted by the local Forestry Authorities.
• Organic Farming project with the communities, which supports the communities as well enriches the soils, curbs water and air pollution by not using harmful chemicals. This also provides for more sustainable income for the communities around Mount Arjuna so
that they do not have to depend on the forests on Mount Arjuna for their livelihood.
• Agroforestry Projects, which provides for more sustainable income for the communities and helps in conservation of the forests on Mount Arjuna.
• Bio-Gas Projects
Creating greater awareness on importance of environmental protection, conservation of the forests (with emphasis on Mount 6 Arjuna) through campaigns, use of both electronic, TV and printed media.
• Awareness Programmes on plants, forest conservation, forests habitats and animals
• Collaboration and partnership with other Organisations, both internationally and locally, to promote conservation and community entrepreneurship in order both help the communities and provide them with alternative income rather than living off the forest which cause deforestation
• Organising the communities and training for combat of forest fires.
At Kaliandra Sejati Foundation itself, eco-tourism resort, outbound and
leadership training programmes – about 70% of the jobs are held by the local
• The home stay programmes involves 25 villages homes and their families
• The Organic Farming Project involves currently about 73 farmers and their families of the surrounding villages, and this is expected to expand further.
• The forest conservation project which uses the Forest Parenting concept which directly benefitted about 150 local people, which includes the mix crop planting, bio-gas project and agro-forestry projects. Through their association, there is a total of 400 members who also indirectly benefitted.
• The making of chips (potato chips, banana chips, jack fruit chips, etc), the raring of bees and production of honey, etc benefit many more locals. We also buy snacks and savories from the local communities for guests at the Resort.
• The development of Mount Arjuna as a Toursim area has resulted in the one of the Villages (Tambak Sari) being declared as a tourism village and this has benefitted the people of the village and the surrounding villages.
• The many activities organized to create greater awareness of the people on the importance of the Mount Arjuna, such as downhill cycling, cross country cycling, 5km Mount Arjuna Eco-Walk & Run, Trekking around Mount Arjuna has also benefitted the people.