Community Update

Digital Empowerment Toolkit Now Available!

At World Pulse, we recognize the need for ongoing learning—for you and for your community! Our toolkits aim to provide the resources you need to advance your social change work.

We are excited to introduce our Digital Empowerment Trainers’ Toolkit, a dynamic resource to help you bring the benefits of connecting online to women in your community. Check it out today! »

The Path Less Traveled by the Human Spirit

Martial Arts Performance

I have always believed in an attitude of gratitude and developing a habit of seeing the positive which exists within every negative. While spending the last 1 ½ years living in Indonesia my senses have been absorbing a variety of experiences, the vast contrast of wealth and poverty being only the superficial.

The depravation of education and lack other basic needs has tested my courage and love in many new ways. With corruption around every corner I’ve noticed the path of least resistance prevails and is often encouraged.
Education is often limited and takes a back seat to work for many children, making it difficult for them to stray from that path. I had recently been told of disabled children who were discarded, hidden and even locked in cages due to the embarrassment brought to their families. Lack of resources and proper medical care has left them with little hope for a better life.

We were recently invited by a friend to visit a school in Padesan designed to help these children. Immediately we agreed our friends would donate goodie bags and we would provide free health check-ups.

Along the way we passed many children, dresses to their ankles and heads wrapped in scarves all happily walking the long road in the unrelenting Indonesian sun. Upon our arrival the children welcomed us with a presentation, and that’s when IT happened. A magnificent display of maximized human potential! These children were taking anything but the path of least resistance, using every challenge they ever faced towards the total expression of life within them.
Their spectacular presentation included a team of deaf children performing a rare form of martial arts requiring deliberate movements in time with music. One of them may even be competing in Japan for the world title. Another magical display of talent was a group playing music in harmony, music which they cannot hear! These children have all learned sign language, mastered wood working skills and now have the ability to not only function but excel in society.
To me the miracle is not their potential, I believe that exists within us all, to me It is the unrelenting ambition to achieve maximum potential and the practical application of it which I’m so humbled by. I mean how many us can truly say the same of ourselves?

The kids and I at the Padesan School for the deaf, blind and disabled



Siona's picture


I love that you saw such a range of experiences and choose this one to remember and bring back. To me human beings are capable of both such terribleness and such courage, and to me it's important to focus on and encourage the latter. I love how you've done this. Thank you.

pheebsabroad's picture


Are miracles in and of themselves, the resilience of children is something which consistently amazes me. If given the chance a child has unlimited is a miracle that you are able to not only witness these events but to also be involved in them.


ruth_terry's picture

Hello, I liked that you


I liked that you highlighted both the good and the bad you saw around you in this story. Sometimes we are so eager to accentuate the positive, or we get so depressed by the negative, that we do not see a complete picture. Thank you for sharing your story with us!


P.S. Can you tell us more about how the children acquired these skills and what form of martial arts they practice?

"A writer’s job is to tell stories that connect readers to all the people on earth... Passionate and well-articulated ideas can and do change the world." ~~Mary Pipher

Magazine »

Read global coverage through women's eyes

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Community »

Connect with women on the ground worldwide

PAKISTAN: They Went to School and Never Came Back

PAKISTAN: They Went to School and Never Came Back

Campaigns »

Be heard at influential forums

WWW: Women Weave the Web

WWW: Women Weave the Web

Programs »

Help us train women citizen journalists

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

Blog »

Read the latest from World Pulse headquarters

Announcing Our Prize Winners!

Announcing Our Prize Winners!

Partners »

Join forces with our wide network of partners

Nobel Women's Initiative

Nobel Women's Initiative