What do Pandas and Orangutans all have in common? The threat of extinction. Originating from Indonesia and Malaysia, the orangutan has become an almost extinct species. Orang meaning person, Utan meaning forest, these mammals are native to the depleting rainforest. Back in 2010, a campaign titled “Need a break? So does the rainforest” was issued against Kitkat for cutting down the palm trees for their chocolate, the home of the orangutans. However, thanks to a passionate aficionado named Willie Smits’ adoration for the mammal, there was already a conservation for their cause.
In 1991 he founded the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOS) along with a rehabilitation facility. The aim of the foundation was to eventually release them back into the wild, but since their home was shrinking so quickly, he was forced to take more extreme measures. He then began buying land in an area named Samboja which accumulated to 4,700 acres. The land was then sectioned into three rings; the furthest and largest one consisted of sugar palms, the second a “rainforest wildlife sanctuary” and the third being the foundations’ campus. The campus also consists of education and research centres.
Fortunately, all the inhabitants of Samboja were integrated into this cause and all work together to support the orangutans. The inhabitants are financed to grow crops such as pineapples, papayas bananas and to take care of the orangutans; 3,000 jobs have been created because of this. The foundation has been a huge success and is still standing strong today. They have recently released 6 orangutans into the Kehje Sewen forest and discovered an albino orangutan. How exciting!
Our conclusion for this month’s story: passion, persistence and a kind heart are what makes the world a better place. If you have something you know serves justice and has a positive place in this world, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
Individuals do make a difference and who knows, that individual could be you.
For the full story please click here.
With that being said, her life long dream was to have a dog. In high school, she got seven dogs in one go as her family started rescuing stray dogs in their community. Currently, she is finishing up a degree in International Development Studies, with an interest in Environmental Studies and a minor in Visual Arts. In the future, she plans to combine the two via installation art at an international level to produce critical thinking and thought provoking issues to the public.
She lives by two quotes “education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world” by Nelson Mandela and “be the change you wish to see in the world” by Mahatma Gandhi.
She believes that the world is intertwined in more ways that one imagines, the worlds inhabitants are dormant and distracted with irrelevant issues and she wishes to awaken them to the reality of the truth.
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- Orangutans future saved by passionate and kind hearted human - June 10, 2017