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October 1st, 2009
03:05 PM ET

CNN Hero: Budi Soehardi

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[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/09/03/cnnheroes.budi.soehardi/art.budi.soehardi.jpg caption="Budi Soehardi poses with young residents of Roslin Orphanage."]

CNN Heroes

At Roslin Orphanage, children giggle through deep concentration as they try to master the "Chicken Dance." It's a far cry from the Indonesian orphans' earlier months and years.

"They are cheerful-looking and photogenic, but close to all have a very sad story," said Budi Soehardi, founder of the West Timor orphanage.

"Some of the babies come because a mother passes away right after delivery because of lack of nutrition. Others come from extreme poverty. Some come from families [that] just do not want the children and abandon them," he said.

Soehardi, a 53-year-old Indonesian pilot living in Singapore, and his wife, Peggy, look after 47 children at the orphanage. They have a personal relationship with each one, and consider them part of their family. The couple named many of the children since they entered the orphanage as babies - some of them tiny victims and refugees from the conflict in East Timor.

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