Volunteers Review the Nyaru Menteng Orangutan Sanctuary in Borneo  |  The Great Projects

Volunteers Review the Nyaru Menteng Orangutan Sanctuary in Borneo | The Great Projects

so I really wanted to come to a place
where orangutans are looked after very well, where it is sustainable, ethical and
involved the local community also Watching jungle school I thought it must
be somewhere good to go because having done my research it felt like the best place to come to. My friend Nikki, who is actually with us at the moment volunteering so she had been
her dream for two years and she was very excited and showed me all of the
websites all of the videos etc etc I didn’t know what to
expect, I had never been to Borneo before I didn’t know an awful lot about how it
worked except for jungle school and then yeah I began to do my own research and
it’s lived up, it’s more than more what I expected So the day starts early
and between 7 & 8 o’clock and it’s quite a lot of physical activity so you are collecting fruits, leaves, ginger for the orangutans. taking them to the sanctuary to prepare so we made
loads of packages of food for the orangutans, sometimes in the bag
sometimes it’s in the bamboo stick, so a lot of preparation time loads of fruits and
nuts and once you’ve done that we go and feed it to the orangutans Today we have been making a jungle gym for the orangutan babies, we’ve seen the babies
from a distance playing on what we’ve actually erected You can really see again with
the enrichment once you’ve made an enrichment puzzle and then the first
time you give it to them you can see just what a huge impact that it has on
them So we actually can see the end result of our work so it’s very very
satisfying it’s very hot as well so it takes a lot out of you so it’s very rewarding Sweat buckets
basically but all in all amazing So I’ve had the opportunity to go to the soft release
on the boats and see them and then in addition to that, you get to see
the babies when they come back from their jungle school Well my favourite
memory is actually just watching the staff, who we work with are fantastic,
interacting with the orangutans and they’ve got such a strong
relationship over the years the staff know all their names and what their
characteristics are, how they behave, how they act and the person working with
us, Andre has been fantastic. Really impressed, it’s how much they love them you can
just really tell that they care about them… more than their family. I think they spend more time here than they do at home To be honest with you it’s just been a dream come true and also the friendships that we make because we are all bonded and we are
together and and I will take that away for it as well perfect You are with people who have different lives to your own living in a different country, different
experiences so you’re learning constantly Downtimes been great we have been able to talk to the staff talk to the locals, it’s very scenic as well so we go for walks, there’s a beautiful lake down there as well It’s got a boardwalk as well that goes out over the lake, go get an ice cream if you want one and there’s
various other bits that you can do out or would recommend kind of downloading
if you like movies downloading movies before you come So you kinda go oh gosh
this is the real jungle it’s a real rainforest there’s nothing false about
this place this place is the real deal maybe in the beginning I was a little
bit afraid of possible snakes or possible things that may come out of the
rainforest but no nothing everything is perfect well one of the best tips I would give is when you get your water or your
drink put it in the freezer because it gets really hot during the day so when
you come back, later on, it’s the best thing ever and lots of deet bring lots of deet with you because there are a hell of a lot of
mosquitos here if I had to pick three words to describe my experience that was a fun
exciting and engaging you really feel like you’re part of that community they
want you to be here and your little bit of work in some way is then going to
have an impact it’s such good fun it really is inspiring, really enjoyed it