On Thursday 12th May a polish man who has been visiting Bali was found dead in South Kuta. Local police are suspecting that this incident is a case of suicide, though an investigation is underway. The man has been named 34-year-old Michal Tracy, he is thought to have hung himself from a coconut tree.
On the early morning of 12th May, local herdswoman Made Warsih was guiding her cows through village grazing lands when she saw something hanging in a tree. She is said to have hoped that it was only a kite stick in the tree, that she did not approach to get a better look. She knew something wasn’t right from afar.
Frightened and scared to approach, Warsih left the cows to run home and tell her brother, I Wayan Ariana, who is part of the village Pecalang. The Pecalang are traditional Balinese village security and community leaders. Ariana gathered the on-duty Pecalang who headed to the tree where they then called the South Kuta Police.
At 8.30 am the police arrived and secured the scene, by which time many in the village has already been made aware of the situation. After combing the scene the police lowered Tracy’s body at 10 am and after an initial assessment, his body was taken by ambulance to the Sanglah Hospital in Denpasar.
Tracy is said to have still been wearing his backpack and local reports do not suggest that a note was left nearby the scene or in his backpack. It is thought that Tracy was staying in the Kuta area, though very little else is known about him.
The investigation with the South Kuta Police remains open, and since this is a case of a death of a foreigner may also grow to include the top police investigators of Denpasar Police and the national police service. Officials from the polish embassy will have been informed and should Tracy have been traveling alone in Bali it will be a representative of the Polish embassy that will inform his next of kin.
There is not an embassy for Poland in Bali since embassies are always located in the capital city of the other country. There is a Polish embassy in the south of Jakarta and there is a Polish consulate in Denpasar. They will have been informed about this incident.
Mental health and suicide support is available to locals, tourists, and ex-pats in Bali. In March 2021 eleven Bali-based mental health NGOs joined together to create the L.I.S.A Suicide Prevention Hotline. L.I.S.A stands for Love Inside Suicide Awareness and was created as part of the Movement of Recovery Project.
According to the World Health Organisation, 93% of Indonesia’s already limited mental health services closed in 2020. Suicide rates in Bali have increased as a result of the pandemic and the mental health of both local people and long-term international residents has been challenged. The L.I.S.A hotline is open 24-hours a day and has operatives who can speak English and Bahasa Indonesia.
They also have access to other mental health support systems such as the ambulance service and the psychologists, psychiatrists, and local hospitals. They can also source translators should English or Bahasa not be the preferred language of communication.
The eleven NGOs have formed a conglomerate called Bali Bersama Bisa, meaning Bali, Together We Can. Outside of the L.I.S.A hotline, BBB has worked throughout the pandemic to help people in all kinds of situations. They created the Bali Crisis Kitchen which offered food support to thousands of Balinese people during the pandemic, as well as drug recovery groups, the Bali Bipolar Community, and other groups working to support the vulnerable LGBTQIA+ communities in Indonesia.
If you are feeling like you need support, or know of someone who needs mental health support, the L.I.S.A hotline is +62 811 3815 472 (in English), +62 811 3855 472 (in Bahasa).
Support can also be found at www.worldbefrienders.org
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