A week spent in Jakarta was not expected to offer much opportunity for Dreamaid as I was working on a project full time. However, a chance meeting with Matthias Rhein from the Department for International Development turned this in to a great week for Dreamaid.
Matthias has travelled the world in many guises and was very impressed by the potential of Dreamaid to help him fulfill his new role of 'squaring the circle' of poverty, the environment and development. He introduced me to a local hero Onte who has turned around the fortunes of local foresters by adopting international standards (FFS) for forestry management. As Indonesia accounts for a substantial part of the global carbon cycle (24%) the rampant destruction of forests in recent years as taken its toll. However, by using internationally recognised standards of management this trend can be reversed.
How does this affect Dreamaid? By working with those artists and artisans that use approved methods we can help them to achieve greater yields from their crops. This will reduce the amount of wood that needs to be cut and improve the climate. But also as a young tree absorbs carbon and an old one emits it, encouraging active use of trees helps the environment too. Therefore encouraging artisans to use eco-friendly managed crops improves the environment and also offsets the effects of Dreamaid's encouragement of international trade which could potentially increase emissions.
Matthias introduced me to a number of his international cohorts and his colleague Dominic in Indonesia. They are doing amazing things in this area and are truly dedicated to improvement of not only the Indonesian (and global) community but also of the environment.
We are now looking for projects to work on together and are delighted to have met by luck in the hotel gym. I am amazed at how frequently good fortune follows me in the development of Dreamaid.