Volunteer in Indonesia and help care for orangutans, sun bears, monkeys, crocodiles, and a wide range of birds at this wildlife rescue centre in Indonesia. The project is located on the island of Sulawesi which, being the closest Indonesian island to the Philippines, is a common consolidation point for illegal shipments of animals being trafficked from Java, Sumatra, and Borneo across to the Philippines and onwards to China, Taiwan, and Japan. Without a sustainable rescue facility the authorities are not able to enforce, raid and confiscate live animals as there would be no options for the subsequent care and rehabilitation of the rescued animals. This centre was set up to help combat the illegal wildlife trade and provide rescued animals with a place to receive the care they need so that they can be rehabilitated and released back into the wild. The project has also been collaborating with the education department and international schools to educate children about animal rights and welfare. Volunteer in Indonesia and gain in insight into the realities of poaching and rescue and the challenges facing wildlife in the region.
Why choose this project?
The main objective of the centre is for the animals and birds to be released into the wild. If the animals are to be released, it is essential that their natural instincts of searching and foraging for their own food are kept in tact so that they are able to survive once they are released. To achieve this the feeding of the animals must be spread out throughout the day as it would be in their natural environment. Additionally, food must be given to the animals in a way that emulates how it would naturally be. Part of the volunteer work includes finding new ways of giving the animals food in a way that is similar to how it might be found in their natural environment. Taking care of the animals in this way is vital for their mental health and rehabilitation, however, it takes time, and with over 200 animals and birds at the centre and only a handful of local staff to care for them, volunteer help is essential to ensure that the animals are taken care of in a way that nurtures their eventual release. Volunteers gain an understanding of animal welfare and the struggle facing wildlife conservation organisations in the region and some of the great work being undertaken.
Role of the volunteer
Volunteers will spend a significant amount of time providing fresh drinking water to the animals, cleaning their enclosures and carrying out enrichments for all of the animals. This includes a variety of ancillary jobs, such as cleaning food bowls, equipment and food preparation areas. Full training is given, so no specific qualifications or experience are required. Depending upon the number of volunteers and ongoing activities at the time, there will also be work in connection with building/ upgrading enclosures, usually involving a lot of digging, painting, sawing and hammering. For those with a background in Animal Husbandry, veterinary, forestry/agriculture or fundraising, longer placements can be arranged.
Please note that there are strict rules in place about handling and proximity to animals. This is known as the safe distance policy and physical contact with wildlife is not allowed in any circumstance. These rules are in place for the safety of volunteers and to ensure that the animals do not become too used to human contact. It is compulsory that volunteers adhere to these rules and any associated signs around the project site.
No specific skills are required to take part in the project but a love of animals is a must. Volunteers must always be flexible and prepared to help out in any area that is required. Qualified vets and vet nurses are in great demand and discounts are offered to qualified vets who have over 2 years experience.
WHY JOIN THE PROJECT
To help with rehabilitation and release of wild animals
To work in a spectacular location
To gain an indepth understanding of animal welfare
The centre is situated in a beautiful mangrove forest on the coast in Northern Sulawesi and is located just 200 metres from the rescue centre’s own black sand beach where a coral reef lies under the ocean. In the distance, the source of the exotic black sand can be seen by way of several of the island’s active volcanoes. The area is ecologically diverse and many native species are still able to be seen in the wild.
Details & Costs
- Duration: 2-12 weeks
- Cost: £1145/$2003 for 2 weeks
£235/$411 for each week after that
- Requirements: Age 18+
- Location: Northern Sulawesi, Indonesia
- Project activities: Feeding animals, cleaning enclosures, repairing enclosures and generally taking care of the animals and birds at the centre
- Working hours: 8 hours per day 6 days a week. Days off are decided on a weekly basis in agreement with your project coordinator
- Project availability: Project starts every Monday all year round
- Arrival day: Monday
What is included
- Accommodation: Shared room in a single-sex dorm
- Food: 3 Vegetarian meals per day (plus occasional fish sustainably harvested from local sources)
- Airport pick-up at Monado International Airport
- Training: Pre-departure preparation pack, On-site Orientation and Project induction provided
- Support: On-site coordinator providing 24-hour support
- Activities: Staff can help organise activities during your free time (activity costs may be extra)
What is not included
- Airport drop-off: Taxis can be arranged from the project to the airport (approx £20 / $35)
- Please note that the Indonesian government has very strict rules regarding volunteering with endangered primates. According to Indonesian law, all volunteers must be tested for Tuberculosis, Hepatitis B and HIV/AIDS and present certification of these tests to their Project Manager on arrival.