Join an official BOS Orangutan Volunteer Program
Spend two weeks in beautiful Borneo at Samboja Lestari, a sanctuary that cares for approx 125 orangutans and 72 sun bears. If you are passionate about protecting orangutans and want to make a practical difference, this program is for you.
Situated within the Bornean tropical rainforest, Samboja Lestari remains one of the best and most accessible places in the world to see orangutans, whilst respecting the fact they are wild animals. Apart from orangutans, our centre is home to an array of other enchanting species like sun bears, binturongs and macaques.
What to know:
- Available in English
- In Samboja Lestari, Borneo
2023: 1st October, 15th October, 29th October, 12th November, 26th November, 10th December
2024: 7th January, 21st January, 4th February, 25th February, 10th March
- 13 nights / 14 days
- All organic meals included
- Up to 10 people
Take this opportunity to leave a long-lasting impact on Indonesia’s wildlife, working hard to provide a meaningful future not only for animals at the centre, but also for the region’s wildlife for many years to come.
As an Orangutan Program Volunteer, you will be a key part of our enrichment and welfare program. Enrichment programs are vital for captive orangutans, teaching them how to forage for food, build, modify and use tools, increase agility and develop skills to survive in the wild. Take this opportunity to leave a long-lasting impact on Indonesia’s wildlife, working hard to provide a meaningful future not only for animals at the centre but also for the region’s wildlife for many years to come.
While in Borneo, you will help to make enrichment items for the orangutans that are being cared for at Samboja Lestari. These items really make a difference to the everyday lives of the orangutans, helping them to learn valuable skills that they will need when released into the wild. For those orangutans that unfortunately cannot be released, enrichment items help bring variety, diversion and enjoyment to their days.
Your activities in a nutshell
A highlight and extreme privilege of our program is touring Samboja Lestari Orangutan Sanctuary. Samboja Lestari (translated as " Samboja Forever") is currently a home to 127 orangutans that have been released into 6 islands around the lodge. Our detailed tour, will get you one-of-a-lifetime opportunity to deepen your orangutan knowledge but also observe the behaviour of rehabilitated individuals living within the complex.
Visiting Sun Bears
The BOS Foundation also looks after 69 sun bears, the smallest and definitely cutest bears in the world. You will get to see staff feeding the bears and learn more about our efforts to build large forested outdoor enclosures for them. At its core, we care for them in a similar way to how we care for orangutans, because for both it is not only about tending to their physical needs, but their social and psychological ones as well!
Sungai Hitam Boat Cruise
Cruise along the Sungai Hitam river for a chance to see highly endangered Proboscis monkeys, as well as several local villages.
Bukit Bangkirai Canopy Walk
You will have the opportunity to walk high up in the forest canopy, keep your eyes peeled for gibbons and native flora and fauna.
Sungai Wain Walk
The forest is home to many creatures rarely found elsewhere, including sun bears and no less than nine species of primates.
Estimated travel cost is based on the twin-share standard first floor rooms, with cold water and a lovely garden view. In the warm climate, the cold water is refreshing and cleansing to shower in after a hot, sweaty day. Single rooms and rooms with hot showers are available at an extra cost.
Wildlife that you may see
I loved walking through the forest, thevariety of plants, flowers, trees and animals. There was so much to discover. It was so peaceful and quiet – and still you could always hear different animal noises.
Thanks to the organizers of the program! What you and BOS achieve in general is unimaginable and to see it upclose is wonderful. I would also like to commend the staff at Samboja Lodge. Everyone is very friendly, motivated and seems very happy.
If you prefer to arrive earlier or leave later, we are happy to arrange it for you!
Optional independent trip extensions are available. Please enquire.
Mahakam River Adventure Tour
5 days / 4 nights
The Kalimantan Mahakam River is one of the greatest adventure tours of Indonesia, where the poison darts of the blow pipes still move their way through the rainforest!
The houseboat provides lodging and full-board meals for several days during your trip, giving you a unique experience of living on a river. Several highlights of the tour include traditional villages, dance performance, wildlife, jungle trekking, museum and a Royal Palace.
Trekking in Kutai National Park
3 days / 2 nights
Kutai National Park in East Kalimantan has been established to protect a wild population of around 2000 wild orangutans and other species, as well as traditional Bugis Dayak villages.
We will go deep into the Bornean rainforest in search of endangered fauna and flora, staying overnight in the Camp Kakap. Perhaps one of the most exciting experiences is a night rainforest trek when the cacophony of sound is quite overwhelming!
Welcome to paradise! The classic tropical islands of the Derawan Archipelago are where you go to trade jungle trekking and orangutans for white unspoiled beaches, palm trees and warm blue sea. Snorkel or take an optional scuba excursion to see schools of barracuda, whale sharks, green sea turtles, manta rays and more near Derawan’s coast.
Komodo and Rinca
Visit the Komodo dragon feeding grounds, swim in a beautiful coral garden, or simply relax by the ocean, and prepare to have your breath taken away by such unforgettable locations as Batu Cermin cave, the Rinca & Komodo Islands, and the famous Pink beach! During your time you will have the chance of witnissing animals include the water buffalo, monkeys and, of course, the famous Komodo dragon.
Covid-19 & health requirements
Visitors need to test negative for TB, HIV and Hepatitis B and C before arrival. More information on the required health tests (usually simple blood tests) are provided after registration. In addition, information on quarantine needs to be read, understood and signed (e.g. BOS Foundation’s Visitor Compliance Statement, an Orangutan Proximity Agreement, the Ethical Guidelines and Code of Conduct, Samboja Lodge Visitor Guidelines etc.). These documents are available online and can be found on BOS Foundation’s Website.
Allergies & dietary requirements
Considering that the program takes place within a rainforest, the weather can naturally be unpredictable. Please note that we may be prevented from doing some of the activities if this is the case. Replacement activities will be offered during these times.
Full board accommodation, transportation from/to the airport.
Costs of the obligatory health tests, other travel costs (especially flights), activities & tours, insurances, vaccination, and alcoholic beverages.
Any flights arriving in Borneo on the first day of the program and departing after program finishes. Let us know if you are planning to arrive/depart on different days.
Please remember that airfare is not included. The airport shuttle is only included on the day the program begins and ends. An extra fee will be added if you arrive or depart on alternative days.
Please note that unless the program is cancelled, your deposit is non-refundable as costs need to be paid for in advance.
If you have any queries or like to chat about the best options for you, please contact us through email@example.com