This volunteer project in Borneo is based on the banks of the stunning Kinabatangan River; an extremely biologically diverse area where orangutans, gibbons, proboscis monkeys, langur monkeys, Borneo pygmy elephants, crocodiles and a whole host of wild and wonderful bird species live. This project is a unique initiative that is run for the community by the community. It was set up to protect the forest habitat, wildlife and biodiversity of the local area while preserving the livelihood of the local population. Volunteers get involved with conservation and community work during their stay meaning that everyone who lives in the area benefits from the work being done, from the orangutans to their slightly less hairy cousins - humans!
Fragmented and degraded forests are the most critical threats to the survival of Borneo’s 10 primate, and various other, species. The two major factors that have contributed to the degradation in the area have been forest fires and the uncontrolled poaching of timber.
The area surrounding the local community was devastated by raging forest fires in 1983 and then again in 1998. Studies showed that, after the 1983 fires, almost zero natural regeneration occurred during the proceeding 20 years. The project was started to help regenerate the areas destroyed by the fire but with such a large area destroyed, volunteer support is very much needed. It is not only the forest that needs conserving: the nearby lake which is a vital source of fish for the locals and also the location of the Eco Camp run by the project requires constant conservation from the noxious water weed, Salvinia Molesta, which, if left unchecked, choke critical wetland habitats, turning once pristine lakes, freshwater swamps and tributaries into festering sludge pits. Volunteers are needed for both reforestation and lake conservation work. In addition to this, volunteers are also needed to take part in community work including teaching, house/school renovations, and helping to repair the locals boats.
The project is situated in the small village of Mengaris, located on the banks of the beautiful Kinabatangan River. This massive river flows swiftly for an impressive 560km out of the rugged mountainous interior of Borneo to the north-east coast in the Malaysian State of Sabah. Most of its upper reaches are steaming uninhabited jungles. The Lower Kinabatangan – where the project is based - slows immensely to meander through an endless floodplain which forms the agricultural heartland of Sabah. What remains of the native rainforests along the floodplain is both unique and amazing due to its geography, rainforest biodiversity, and the astounding array of wildlife species still able to survive in the ever-changing landscape.
•Duration: 2 - 26 weeks
•Cost: £775 ($1356) for 2 weeks, £185 ($324) for every extra week
•Requirements: age 18+
•Location: Mengaris Village, Malaysian Borneo
•Project activities: Tree-planting, lake restoration, teaching, house/school renovations, Trail maintenance, wildlife survey
•Working hours: 08:00 - 17:00 Monday –Friday, schedule may vary
• Project availability: All year round, pick-up day is 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month
• Accommodation: Single or shared room in a homestay
• Food: 3 meals per day
• Airport pick up and drop off
• Training: Pre-departure information pack, on-site Orientation and project induction provided
• Daily transfers to and from your project.
• Support: 24 hour support from on-site coordinator
• Activities: All volunteers get the chance to learn local cooking and dancing. Staff can help you to plan your weekend activities
Volunteer with Kaya in Borneo and work on ...
£ 1345 ($2354) for 2 weeks