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About Us

Gili Eco Trust, or Yayasan Ekosistem Gili Indah, is an NGO based on Gili Trawangan. It was founded in 2001

to protect coral reefs around the Gili islands from destructive fishing. In 1999 local fishermen founded the SATGAS to patrol the waters around the three Gili islands. Back then, the reefs were frequently fished with dynamite

and cyanide, destroying all the coral and killing the aquatic life inhabiting the reefs. Coral reefs had been left

in a disastrous state after the intense El Niño in 1997-1998. The local population reacted and organized patrols

to eliminate and educate against the bad fishing practices. An agreement was created between the fishermen, defining the legal techniques of fishing, limited to certain authorized zones, in an attempt to eradicate destructive fishing methods for good.


To support the SATGAS, the main dive shops on Trawangan established the NGO Gili Eco Trust in 2001.

The idea was to encourage a reef donation of 50,000IDR (€4, US$5) per diver, to financially assist the initiative

of SATGAS. This donation was chiefly used to pay the SATGAS employees, to place buoys to limit anchoring,

to restore the reefs, and to organize many other environmental projects to protect and restore the natural environment around the islands whilst boosting sustainable tourism.

Our coasts and beaches are irreplaceable. Let’s save them.

Where we are now

The Gili Eco Trust has grown and expanded its activities from marine conservation to waste management

and sustainable eco-tourism. In 2004, Gili Eco Trust started the Biorock project. The creation of artificial reefs

and restoring the natural habitat of thousands of fish in previously destroyed and overfished areas of the reef.

Gili Eco Trust also supports the FMPL, (Front Masyarakat Peduli Lingkugan) the waste collection and management organization on Gili Trawangan. Making daily waste collections to processing recyclable materials and transporting them off the island and up-cycling glass waste into building materials and glassware. Along with these two campaigns, there are many smaller eco-projects which you can read more about on this website, such as working horse healthcare clinics and educational workshops for kids, tourists

and hospitality staff and eco-touristic initiatives.

Our Mission

Our mission is to create a sustainable island.

To promote ecotourism and provide a healthy environment for working animals.

To restore our coral reefs and to replenish our natural fish populations. To ensure that all waste created on Gili T is reduced to minimum levels

and managed and separated properly for recycling projects where materials can be transported off the island.To ensure the livelihoods of the local community is enhanced.

  • Continue coral reef restoration projects by maintening and expanding biorocks and coral nurseries.

  • Install and maintain mooring buoys to create more parking space for boats to eliminate the use of anchors

  • Manage the island sorting center as an integrated waste management hub to employ more people and make the system more sustainable with circular economy.

  • Continue to hold a beach clean up at least once a week to engage tourists, ex-pats and the local community to work together to keep beaches clean and raise awareness.

  • Initiate more schemes like RefillMyBottle to encourage less single-use plastic use amongst tourists and backpackers

  • Ensure that the working horses of Gili are treated under humane and acceptable conditions, teaching properly care and handling and providing free healthcare and checkups at organized clinics or whenever needed

  • A zero-waste-to-landfill approach to an island community, using methods in recycling, up-cycling, repurposing, composting and eventually waste to energy initiatives to create a net-zero island.

  • Continue our monitoring projects to keep an eye on reef health, coral bleaching, anchor damage, water quality ... from which we can make monthly and annual reports.

Our Goals

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Challenges & Opportunities

Our Challenges

  • Lack of existing infrastructures within Indonesia

  • Lack of awareness of the long term consequences of pollution, damage to the ecosystems and overdevelopment

  • Cultural differences will always be something we need to work with as values are very different amongst local communities

  • Changing behaviour is slow

  • Cost is always an issue for a population which lives close to the poverty line. Choosing disposal plastic is often the cheapest option and changing products is a luxury many Indonesians do not have

  • Limited ressources and a small team. Although we receive a lot of helpers on the island each year, it is very transient. Most people move on after 3 months – 2 years at most. Maintaining in house expertise is difficult and therefore our team have to work extremely hard

  • The covid pandemic has brought tourism to a halt and as a result we have significant challenges in raising funds to continue our work

Our Opportunities

  • Growing desire amongst tourists for eco-friendly destinations can help drive change in local behaviours

  • Individuals creating initatives which we can support without using all our resources, for example Cats of Gili, Suparman’s Treevolution

  • Volunteers very often bring experience and relevant expertise which we are able to harness to improve how we work

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