Indonesian ex-helper makes impressive changes to her home village

plumbagan_rice_terraces
rice crops in plumbagan
Rice crops in Plumbagan village

Arumy, an Indonesian who worked in Hong Kong as a domestic worker for ten years, returned to home for good in April 2016. After returning, she started the grand project of developing her village, Plumbangan Village, into an international eco-tourism village.
In Plumbangan, East Java, tourists can hike up the Kelud Mountain, go on river rafting trips, camp in Jati Forest, and see the ancient Hindu temple Candi Plumbangan.

If you saw Arumy on the streets of Hong Kong three months ago, she might just look like any Indonesian tse-tse. But if you see Arumy today, you wouldn’t mistake her for anyone else because of her impressive aspiration: turning her home village, Plumbangan Village, into an international eco-tourism village.

Arumy has a vision for her home village
Arumy in Hong Kong is already thinking of what she will do when she returns to Indonesia

Arumy worked in Hong Kong for ten years as a domestic worker, taking care of a lovely family with two boys. In April 2016, she decided to return to Indonesia for good. She was inspired to start this grand project when her employer’s family in Hong Kong visited her home village in 2014. Her employer’s child did not want to leave because the air was so good! It was at that point Arumy decided that she could not work in Hong Kong forever, she had to return to Plumbangan and show the world how beautiful her village was.

Plumbangan Village, in Blitar City, East Java, is a place you would see on a cute natural scenery postcard. It has two big rivers, green mountains and plenty of good air, and it is also very accessible from the Blitar City. In Plumbangan, tourists can hike up the Kelud Mountain, go on river rafting trips, and camp in Jati Forest. Plumbangan also has a rich cultural history. Candi Plumbangan is an ancient Hindu temple dating back to the 14th-century Majapahit Kingdom. There, tourists can watch traditional dancing and understand the culture of a beautiful place Arumy proudly calls home.

Arumy hopes to encourage the growth of local businesses in Plumbangan, such as local food stalls, by bringing in more tourists. Tourists can serve as an extra income for these food stalls, and in turn they can taste the authentic local flavours. Tourists who come here would also love to bring home some locally produced food, such as traditional coffee and glutinous rice crackers which Arumy herself is making.

Right now, Arumy is working to promote the name of Plumbangan to more people. She serves as the tour guide for two reporters from Hong Kong and a reporter from Singapore. Other than that, people from Japan and Barcelona have also visited Plumbangan. But Arumy will not stop here. She believes in the potential in herself and her village, Plumbangan.

“Migrant workers can do more than just washing the toilets, so dream, believe and make it happen”. And of course, it would be great if you can visit Plumbangan! Arumy will be eagerly waiting to welcome you.