About the Bali Institute for Global Renewal


A world in which people understand what it means to be a global citizen and who are fully empowered and equipped to act for the common good.


  1. Engage and inspire global leadership through the lenses of social entrepreneurship and cultural intelligence;
  2. Provide educational programs that emphasize experiential learning and cultural immersion as ways to deepen our understanding of the world;
  3. Collaborate with universities, organizations, and individuals to design customized experiences with the Balinese culture;
  4. Recognize indigenous wisdom as a vital learning component of 21st century education;
  5. Launch a global campus in Bali providing shared academic and cultural space for dialogue and transformative learning.

Bali Institute for Global Renewal (BIGR) is the largest provider of cultural immersion and service learning programs for universities and high schoolers based in Bali, Indonesia. Other programs include internships and practicum opportunities, faculty training programs and other services for international groups and organizations in their quest to provide inspired, engaged and transformative learning.

BIGR includes a consortium of universities, international organizations, NGOs, thought leaders and consultants who promote a sustainable, humane and culturally-diverse life for all. Our customized programs and educational courses are for individuals, students groups, universities, and other transformative learning retreats. We also provide short and longer-term practicum placement in a variety of positions in Balinese NGO programs. All of these programs are based on the importance of indigenous intelligence and wisdom which is alive and well in Bali. We focus on cultural immersion experiences and service learning opportunities that assists local organizations while providing profound learning for the participants.

Bali Institute is located in Ubud, Bali and San Francisco, California. It is the only affiliate member of ISEP, and an educational partner with Udayana University and Ganesha University — both based in Bali, Indonesia.

A Short Summary

With almost a dozen years of operation in Bali, our programs have consistently offered engaged and impactful learning that integrates traditional academic curriculum with direct cultural immersion experiences and service learning opportunities.

In the beginning, our programs included large global dialogues/forums
with major global leaders attending as well as individuals around the world who
were interested in the concept of “global healing”. Other programs started being
developed offering multicultural and intergenerational leadership training and
dialogue; thought-leader gatherings; global activism programs; and other
workshops that wove in Balinese cultural learning and other indigenous wisdom
practices as a central component of the transformative learning experience.

In the last five years, BIGR has been asked to develop cultural immersion
programs with a growing list of top American universities for specific courses
lasting from 2-5 weeks in Bali, on a variety of topics. Since then, more than 600
university and high school students from around the world have participated in
BIGR’s cultural immersion and service learning programs. Our core team works
closely with each program and professor to co-design and co-facilitate the courses,
helping to link curriculum with specific cultural immersion experiences – creating
truly transformative and engaged learning at its core. During this time over 50
programs have been developed with prestigious educational institutions including:

  • New York University School of Public Policy
  • Northeastern University Global Studies/Department of Political Sciences 3x
  • Northeastern University College of Health Sciences 2 x
  • Sonoma State University – School of Political Science/Global Social Entrepreneurial Program
  • University of California, San Diego Alternative Breaks Program
  • Northeastern University Coop/Internship Programs
  • Global Leadership Adventures for high school students 3x
  • University of California – Irvine College of Health Sciences
  • University of San Diego – School of Leadership and Education Sciences
  •  Global Faculty Development Training Program
  • Dominican University – School of Health and Natural Sciences
  • Long Island University Global – Australia Program
  • Global Leadership Adventures
  • Women in Leadership / Australia
  • Friends For Asia – Continuing to establish volunteer opportunities throughout the Island of Bali with paid volunteers from around the world
  • IKON Institute of Australia – Practicum for Art Therapist Training

In addition, we are now in partnership with the two largest Balinese
educational institutions, Udayana University and Ganesha University, and often
work in conjunction with them to host American students on their campus which
often includes having Balinese university students participating.

Quest for Global Healing & Awakening Global Action

Bali Institute for Global Renewal emerged from two “QUEST FOR
GLOBAL HEALING” Conferences and a third gathering entitled “AWAKENING
GLOBAL ACTION,” developed and produced by the founder, Marcia Jaffe, and a
senior level collaborative team she pulled together – all happening in Ubud, Bali in
2004, 2006 and 2007. In less than four years, these three gatherings brought
together more than 1,200 people from more than 40 countries to explore new roles
individuals might play in addressing such global issues as poverty, human rights,
sustainable development, environment concerns, nonviolent conflict resolution,
and numerous other challenges.

Individuals attending were drawn to these gatherings by their own personal
beliefs that they could make a difference in the world, and to identify action steps
to become more engaged in an area of global social change that they personally
feel passionate about. Participant countries included China, Russia, Thailand,
Laos, Australia, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, South Africa, Peru, Canada,
Argentina, France, Norway, Denmark, Tunisia, France, Germany, Greece,
Singapore, Malaysia, Cambodia, Afghanistan, Israel, Palestine, Indonesia, United
States, and many more. Although culture and languages were varied, the common
bond of wanting to be in Bali along with other concerned global citizens ready to
become more involved in the world were major components to the success of these
three gatherings.

The final gathering held in August of 2007, was an outgrowth of what was
learned from the previous two conferences. Different than the first two, the
program was designed to offer more multicultural leadership training and skill
building so that delegates would go home with clarity and vision regarding their
own unique passion around specific social changes and concerns for making a
difference. With over 350 people attending of all ages (18-80+), this 7-day
program offered intensive leadership training, practicum time, deep integration,
and ways to stay connected after delegates headed home. The program was
designed by several international consultants using similar training models found
in corporate settings that inspired transformative thinking and results-oriented

The island and culture of Bali served as the integral component of these

The foundation of this work continues to be based on the belief that Bali,
unlike any other cultural environment in the world, will grow to be the hub for
important dialogues, educational programs, engaged and transformative
experiences, service learning and powerful volunteer opportunities.

World Leaders, Global Visionaries and Other Dignitaries attending Bali Institute Programs (partial list)

Archbishop Desmond Tutu * Apollo 14 Astronaut Edgar Mitchell * Former
Indonesian President Abdurrahman Wahid * Bhutan Minister of Human Affairs
Lynopo Ugyen Tshering * Afghanistan Red Crescent Society President Fatima
Gailani * Indigenous leaders from Australia, New Zealand, and Africa * Ubud
Royal Family * Native America writers/poets * Nobel Peace Prize winners Jody
Williams and Betty Williams * Swaziland Prince Muzi Dlamini and Prince
Cedza Dlamini (relatives of Nelson Mandela) * environmental author Barry
Lopez * numerous international NGO and corporate leaders and executives *
global activists * international performers, musicians and artists.

Highlights of the Global Conferences

  • More than 1,200 participants from 40 countries
  • Indepth dialogues and conversations that matter
  • Intimate workshops with world leaders and visionaries
  • Spiritual understanding beyond the religious divide
  • Unique blend of intergenerational and multicultural attendees creating deep dialogue and new ways of thinking/experiencing
  • Personal commitments to do something when returning home
  • Insights and personal growth
  • Shifting of values and global insights
  • Immersion of culture and new insights into social activism
  • Networking with a global community
  • Post-conference gatherings
  • Premiere art exhibitions with original works by local artists
  • Numerous actions including fundraising for schools, donations to families and health clinics, ongoing global networking, job openings, and more
  • Balinese ceremonies, cultural performances and rituals not usually available to foreigners
  • Private dinners with royal family and at local village “banjars”
  • East-West collaboration in arts, music, dialogue, leadership training and more

Benefits/Outcomes (partial list)

  • Bringing global activists and leaders to US conference
  • Starting an institute focused on new forms of global activism
  • Providing financial assistance to Balinese families for education and religious observances
  • Volunteering to assist with programs with the Dali Lama
  • Collecting sunglasses for young Balinese fishermen with cataracts
  • Changing careers to dedicate oneself to a life with direct impact and service to the world
  • Leading workshops on examining, expanding and rewriting perceptions
  • Fundraising for a Balinese school dedicated to teaching English to 50 children. More than $3,000 raised to support school and personal supplies and running the school for the next 2.5 years
  • Creating “Life Grant,” a program designed to help people get their life back on tract after desperate situations
  • Receiving clarity and more confidence in one’s work
  • Creating sacred space in public gatherings between scientists and traditional/alternative healers
  • Creating “Talking Circles” for women, teens and other groups
  • Returning to school for a masters degree in Humanitarian Assistance
  • Exploring issues of power and privilege by attending a conference called “White Privilege”
  • Writing poems about new visions of peace
  • Coordinating a non-violent demonstration down main street USA
  • Integrating physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual realms into business meetings and public gathering
  • Numerous people supporting children in their school needs
  • Joining interfaith women’s group
  • Assisting friends in the Africa continent in establishing clinics
  • Assisting a Korean Buddhist writer
  • Increasing the networking between East and West activism
  • Increased fundraising possibilities
  • Developing new educational classes on gratefulness and other topics
  • Offering presentations on experiences of the Bali Conference
  • Traveling to Sumatra with youth to experience culture
  • Expanding educational offerings on peace in numerous locations worldwide

Sample Comments and Commitments from Delegates:

“… work to support, through a spirit of service, elders and mid-life persons
and help them harness their generative wisdom.”

“… provide seed money for women for economic empowerment.”

“… work to integrate ecotourism into my village.”

“… return to a primary school I taught at in Ghana and work to transform
the educational system and improve nutrition and eventually expand to
other countries and schools.”

“… envision continuing a youth dialogue project in Africa in 2009, and to go back
to San Francisco in 2008 to work with a team to make this happen.”

“… support children in my culture, many of whom are Balinese orphans.”

“… provide emotional empowerment workshops to help disadvantaged people
develop self-confidence and manage anxiety, anger, and frustration.

Endorsements and Supporters

  • More than 200 global partnering organizations and NGOs
  • More than 20 US and international media outlets including radio, internet, newspapers, television and journals
  • More than 25,000,000 media hits via magazine ads, newspaper stories, radio interviews, television coverage and internet website marketing
  • Numerous international educational institutions and learning facility partners
  • Several corporations and civic groups including IBM Indonesia, PMI, Chambers of Commerce, Interaction Associates, and others
  • Numerous internationally-renowned presenters, sponsors, government representatives, doctors, authors, educators, corporate and civic leaders and indigenous village heads
  • City Proclamation

I attended the conference with my 17 year old daughter (Lyla Johston -pictured in the sidebar above) and our lives were changed forever. I watched her turn from being a fierce warrior, on the attack, knowing in her heart that Humanity’s demise was only a matter of time TO a young person coming to terms with what she is FOR more than what she is AGAINST… …I believe the Global Healing Conference in Bali was integral in
making this happen. My daughter herself says that it has been the greatest event of her life!

-Pat McCabe, Dineh Tribe, participant, facilitator and Advisory Committee member

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