Borneo family volunteering vacation

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2018: 11 Nov
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Borneo family volunteering vacation

Environment

The overall aim of this project is to maintain and develop a beautiful area known as the ‘Corridor of Life’ located alongside the Kinabatangan River, a 560km long river in Sabah. The river runs from the centre of Borneo through its incredible, tropical rainforests, floodplains and mangroves and is an epicentre of biodiversity. The area in which the project is based, has been severely damaged by logging and plantations and requires urgent replanting to restore the habitat of countless rare and beautiful species. Volunteers on the project will assist mainly with wildlife population observation tasks, and data recording.

Community

The indigenous Orang Sungai people depend on the rainforest and river for everyday resources. Volunteers working with the local community is an integral part of the area’s conservation, and the project is most likely to succeed when it bridges the gap between the community and the natural environment. Volunteers also spend half a day with school children in the local community, in an attempt to share the importance of conservation. This is important in the education of the next generation of local people, ensuring that they are aware of the importance of conserving their natural surroundings. Lunch and dinners will be in the private homes of individual villagers. allowing volunteers and local people to bond on a personal level.

More generally the project has a wider scope of community development. This involves the creation of a continuous project with the community of the local village.

1 Reviews of Borneo family volunteering vacation

5 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 24 Aug 2018 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Elephants crossing the river just ahead of us.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


More accurate pre-departure information needed on the correct clothing and footwear for work on the project. We had to buy everything on arrival at the
project as the pre-departure information was quite inadequate.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


YES

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


10/10. This was a phenomenal experience, not least due to the professionalism, experience and commitment of the APE project staff on the ground. We learnt
a great deal from beginning to end. It is an experience which will remember forever. I could not help but compare this quality project with our experience last
year with Volunteering Abroad in Sri Lanka. While our host at the turtle hatchery was absolutely fantastic in accommodating us and enlightening us about
caring for endangered sea turtles, the project coordinator(s) were extremely poor and appeared to profit financially from our trip - to the detriment of the
host, who'd worked tirelessly for his guests.

Read the operator's response here:

Thank you very much for your comments and we are glad you had a fantastic time on the project. We will review the pre-departure information to ensure the packing list is accurate and up to date for all future volunteers. Thank you again for giving your time to aid orangutan and elephant conservation on this project!

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