Mandy Stone delivers third-world women their first bra

A different Bali adventure: Glen Innes receptionist gives third-world women their first bra

Mandy has given hundreds of Bali women their first ever bra.

When Mandy Stone, a Glen Innes medical receptionist, rides by on a motorbike or in the back of a car, after eight years, the locals know who she is.

For years she's given Bali women, some of them old enough to be her mum, the first chance at a creature comfort women in the developed world take for granted.

And they're endlessly grateful, she says.

"They'll put them on over their clothes just to show them off!

"The smiles on their faces is like they've won lotto just for something simple."

Glen Innes medical receptionist Mandy Stone has delivered 25 kilograms of women's underwear to the island nation once a twice a year for eight years; at least a thousand bras total by the estimate of the Examiner.

She gathers - or buys - bras in Australia and flies them to Bali, where the shops sell more expensive and worse quality women's underwear.

Many rural women won't even buy one. Far from the lights of Kuta beach and the nighclub strip the country remains a third world agricultural society, often without running water or electricity.

Or "luxuries" like women's underwear; Bali mums rarely if ever consider their own comfort as a priority for the family budget.

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But on the first trip Mandy took she fell in love with the place. In an interview with the Examiner she gushed about the humbleness and gratefulness of islanders, describing how happy they are despite difficult circumstances.

"There's no centrelink there's no anything like that over there.

"They rely on the tourists."

Her "Bali family", who live in the northern Menyali province, live off the income of a tour service for tourists - minus the cost of car hire and petrol.

That job supports three generations.

It all goes back to a trip in 2011. Once she saw the real Bali, Mandy decided she needed to do something to help them out.

After a while other Glen Innes residents and community groups caught on; now she receives donations from groups like the VIEW club, Rotary and the Op Shop.

She also doesn't want praise; the Examiner almost forced her to let the paper do this story as a thankyou to the people who have helped, many of them for nothing in return.

One thing she won't be doing is shrink-wrapping bras to carry more.

She had that bright idea a few years ago, shrinking the 25kg of bras into a vaccum bag in order to fit more.

Unfortunately, Bali's airport scanner couldn't see into the densely packed underwear.

"They thought I was trafficking drugs," Mandy laughs in hindsight.

"They had their machine guns

"I had to put everything out on the table and explain what I was doing

"They detained me for about an hour and I had to explain what I did."

Nowadays she just packs them into a really big suitcase.

She vows never to stop until the entire Bali population has proper underwear. There are over 4 million of them, so it could take some time.