Taking each day as it comes
How one family in Bali is surviving the pandemic
Bali, Indonesia - Komang Agus Sumantara, lives with his family in Badung Regency, Bali. He has been a driver for more than ten years and is based at the international airport. Before the pandemic, he would average 4-5 trips a day. Once COVID struck he was lucky to get a passenger every three days.
“It seems like things are getting a little bit better, a few more local tourists. But it is still difficult,” says the father of three. If it wasn’t for my extended family I don’t know how we could have managed,” he adds.
His wife Niluh says it has been a difficult year and she was pregnant for most of it.
“Before my husband was vaccinated, I was so worried when he went to work at the airport. I told him to wear two masks and always shower and change his clothes when he got home, she says.
Komang also worries about his eldest son, Gede Freskah, who now helps take care of his grandmother in her village.
“My son graduated high school in 2019. He wanted to continue his studies at a tourism academy. But now we can’t afford it,” he says.
Komang says he hopes with all the efforts being made including vaccination drives and the possibility of schools reopening, his family can eventually get back to living normally.
“I hope Bali makes a 100% recovery soon and returns to the way it was, he says.
“After more than a year of uncertainty, it would be nice just to do little things again. Like buying a little treat for my son Rendra from the corner shop and not thinking about the price,” Niluh adds.
It may be a small thing to do, but, for Niluh, it means her husband is working fulltime again and the end of the pandemic is in sight.
UNICEF and partners are making COVID-19 vaccines available to countries across the world, including Indonesia, through COVAX - an international scheme to provide fair access to vaccines.