Every month our partner Alam Sehat Lestari (ASRI) provides clinical care and follow up visits for families in the most rural villages on the border of Gunung Palung National Park. ASRI staff crisscross the landscape delivering affordable medical care to patients who have no other access to medical care. In exchange, patients often pay with seedlings instead of cash.

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Guest blog by Ben Johnson

At 8am we finished loading the truck for our journey for the Mobile Clinic. It was imperative that we set off early, as, while the sun was still low in the sky, it had already begun to get hot, and we had more than 8 hours to drive to reach the remote villages. Between the 95 degree heat and the bumpy dirt road, the one saving grace was our stereo, which allowed Dr. Vina to lead us in singing enthusiastically along to an eclectic mix of Indonesian and Western pop music.

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We're sure you've noticed that lately, we've been talking a lot about building ASRI's Community Hospital and Training Center. What's so great about this hospital, you ask? Well, I've created a side-by-side comparison for you, so you know exactly why this hospital is so important:

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Guest blog by Dr. Yuliana Jeng

A couple weeks ago, when I was doing my daily routine work as a doctor in the clinic, I met him. He is Mr. Helmi, our 40 year old patient with a very bad foot infection. I remember him because he left a deep impression on me. How can I forget him? I still can remember the day when he came.

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Awakening to the timbre of roosters crowing up the dawn that blushes over the steamy landscape, my western-world mind takes a moment to settle. As familiar as I’ve become with Sukadana, a small village of 2,200 sitting on the edge of one of the world’s largest islands, Borneo, it never ceases to humble and inspire. In a world starved for real connections, where texts, tweets, Facebook, Myspace, and a myriad of apps substitute, ASRI stands as a beacon of hope and bastion of true human-to-human connection.

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Guest blog by Dr. Yuliana Jeng

"The sky is dark without the stars tonight. Still, I can hear the sound of rain falling down to the ground. I always love this moment. While I was watching the  rain through my window, I remember our lovely six year old patient, a little boy named Yasir."
- Dr. Yuli

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Malaria, a mosquito-borne parasitic disease, is estimated by the World Health Organization to infect 400 to 500 million people worldwide each year - and to have caused the deaths of almost 200 million people. [1]

In rural areas like Sukadana in West Kalimantan, the village where Project ASRI is based, the disease is more prevalent. So we have distributed mosquito nets - a widely-accepted method of prevention- to families in the 30 villages surrounding Gunung Palung National Park, in exchange for seedlings used for reforestation.

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Reforestation, rice fields, and real life changes

Not long ago, Health In Harmony and ASRI founder Dr. Kinari Webb, was joined where she sat in the shade, admiring the forests of Gunung Palung National Park. A man approached, sat down, and sighed in satisfaction.

"That's my rice field," he said.

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