‘Crazy Village’,  amarried couples invite mentally ill people to live together

‘Crazy Village’, amarried couples invite mentally ill people to live together

EAST JAVA: The efforts of a husband and wife from East Java Indonesia known as Heru Setyawan and Lamini are described as an extraordinary act and should be commended for being willing to take care of mental patients in their home for free.

Citing the CNA report , as a caregiver of individuals facing mental health problems, Lamini admitted that he had not faced any major problems in carrying out this task for the past 15 years.

“I’m used to it and don’t feel disgusted doing this work,” said the 44-year-old woman.

Lamini added, their residence located in Kampung Paringan was used as a settlement center for this special group.

Also known as the ‘Crazy Village’ in Ponorogo district, East Java, the door of this couple’s house is always open to accept mental patients to live together.

“We named this place as Margo Widodo which means the path to goodness in Javanese. The couple hopes that their home and way of life will lead to beautiful things,” she said.

In the meantime, Setyawan admitted that the plan to accept mental patients to live together was his idea.

While Lamini was initially uncomfortable when strangers, especially those with mental problems, were in the same house, but over time, she began to understand her husband’s good intentions and began to enjoy her career as a caretaker.

“It all started when my husband’s brother suffered from depression and hallucinations. As the seventh child out of eight siblings, Setyawan was tasked with taking care of his older brother because his other siblings had other responsibilities.

“Since there is no psychiatric hospital in Ponorogo, Setyawan had to take his brother to get treatment in Malang and Solo districts in Central Java. For years, Setyawan drove for five hours from Solo and Malang for treatment.

“Residents in Ponorogo started asking Setyawan for help to take care of their family members who are facing the same problem. At that time, Setyawan was working as a secretary in Kampung Paringan,” he said.

The couple married in 1998 and after seven years, Setyawan had to stop doing volunteer work for health reasons.

After recovering, he decided to resume his old job as a caregiver for the mentally ill.

“I realize that people with mental health problems also need attention, affection and love like normal people,” said Lamini again.

source – Faida Rahim


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