Category Archives: Kampung Konservasi

Yayorin’s mobile conservation bus

We recently received a comment on our from Dwi Triyanto asking about Yayorin’s mobile bus. Eddy Santoso, from Yayorin, has sent this short update. You can find out more about Yayorin’s inspiring work on their Facebook page.


Eddy Santoso of Yayorin

‘Yayorin’s Mobile Bus has been busy ferrying various organisations including the Indonesian Forestry Department’s fire-fighting agency (Manggala Agni), Agency for Conservation of Natural Resources (BKSDA Kalteng SKW II) and students from the Conservation Club of 3 high schools in Pangkalan Bun, Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo.  The groups all assisted with reforestation in Tanjung Keluang Natural Tourism Park, where hawksbill turtles and green turtles lay their eggs.

Yayorin’s mobile bus on a school visit. Photo by Yayorin

In April and May of this year the bus transported the public to plant trees as part of Earth Day and also took students from a local school to the forests of Tanjung Puting National Park. Last month, the bus transported 180 student from Pangkalan Bun to Yayorin’s Sustainable Integrated Agriculture Learning Centre at the village of Sungai Sintuk for a 3 day field trip. The bus is out and about spreading Yayorin’s message ‘People need the forests, forests need orangutans‘.”

If you are interested in sponsoring Yayorin’s mobile bus then please contact us for further information or visit their Facebook page.

Thank you for your continued interest and support,

Orangutan Foundation

Saving orangutans in Indonesia

Orangutan Foundation and Yayorin recently hosted Jason Houston and William deBuys, photographer and writer for the conservation organisation RARE and below is a blog about their visit to Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Kampung Konservasi and the surrounding village communities.

Kampung Konservasi (March/April) – A new mobile library!

On Tuesday, 24 March 2009, Yayorin (Yayasan Orangutan Indonesia) received a wonderful donation of MOBIL BACA (mobile library) from PT Hino Motor Sales Indonesia (Hino) to support its education efforts, in areas close to orangutan habitat, in Central Kalimantan Indonesian Borneo.

Bus - mobile educational unit and library

Mobil Baca – Kampung Konservasi’s new bus.

Hino has already donated similar buses to other NGOs in Indonesia, and this year Yayorin was chosen as one of the recipients. The bus was specifically made to suit Yayorin’s need, and is equipped with seats in front and book shelves at the back.

The hand-over ceremony took place in Sampit, a bigger city, which is a four hour drive from Pangkalan Bun. Mrs. Aulia Reksoatmodjo, a board member of Yayorin and Togu Simorangkir, Yayorin Director attended the ceremony. Hino presented Yayorin with a symbolic key, while Yayorin showed its appreciation by giving Hino a carved orangutan wood statue.

Key Presentation

Presentation of the symbolic key to Yayorin.

Presentation parade

Presentation parade

The bus will hopefully start operating this month. We are looking forward to getting out on the road and distributing our conservation education message and materials to the local population.

Kampung Konservasi bus with Togu and Mrs. Aulia Reksoatmodjo

Mrs. Aulia Reksoatmodjo (on far left), a board member of Yayorin and Togu Simorangkir (far right), Yayorin Director.

Thank you,

Sally -Yayorin

Kampung Konservasi February Blog – Garbage!

The smoke from garbage burning started to hurt our eyes…million of flies swarmed around us…and the unmistakable aroma of garbage welcomed us as we drove into this local waste collecting location. A trash-picker moved quickly passed us toward the incoming yellow garbage truck; he wanted to be the first to find anything inside that he could sell.


Burning garbage at Pasir Panjang waste collection centre.

Student participating in Yayorin’s environmental extracurricular activity seemed a little bit bewildered this afternoon. The main subject of today’s discussion was garbage – its role on the environment, its problems and management. It was obvious that they had never seen as much garbage in their lives and probably felt quite overwhelmed by it.

Most of the students did not even know that such place exists in their city. Many could not even say where the garbage they produced at home or at school went to. In the beginning, they were not happy being ”dragged” into this disgusting place and could not stand the smell. With the passing of time, though, they started to understand why we brought them there and involved entusiastically in the learning process.


In this meeting we asked them to identify the types of garbage they could find in an area of 1m x 1m. They then had to identify which ones were organic and which were inorganic. They were also asked to pay attention to how the garbage was collected, transported and managed.


The Pasir Panjang Waste Collecting Location is the largest in this city and its surrounding areas. This is where all of the waste of the city finally goes to. Unfortunately, like most garbage collecting locations in Indonesia, the concept of garbage management is through burning. What was ironic was the big sign we saw there that clearly said “Do Not Burn the Garbage”!

The students had a tour around the Location. They found an abandoned composting house, filtering pond and a monitoring well. The well was located about 50 meters from the collection area, and the water inside was quite clean. It was supposed to mean that the soil water was in good condition.


The students took home with them a valuable learning experience. We hope that now they realise where their garbage goes, and how the waste can put a really heavy burden on the environment. Next time they want to throw their garbage on the street or anywhere else inappropriate, we wish they will stop and remember their unique experience at the ”garbage place”.


Riyandoko and Sally (Yayasan Orangutan Indonesian

Kampung Konservasi January Blog – Sustainable livelihoods for communities living close to areas of orangutan habitat.


One of the alternative income-generating activities that Kampung Konservasi offers the local communities is low-impact fish farming. On Kampung Konservasi ground, we have three very simple fish ponds, which are – literally – just “big holes” on the ground.

Fishpond - Kampung Konservasi

Fishpond 2 - Kampung Konservasi

Fishpond 3 - Kampung Konservasi

The three different styles of simple fishponds demonstrated by Kampung Konservasi.

Because our ground is naturally “wet” (mostly peat swamp), we do not have to do much to regulate the water flows. We just worked with the land contour and designed our ponds so that they are as low maintenance as possible. This way, local farmers can easily duplicate our methods and feel interested to try because it does not require much commitment from their part. To fortify the walls, we used simple materials such as bamboos, sand bags and polybags filled with vegetable seedlings.

We then put two species of fish in our ponds: one is nila, a consumption fish species that originally came from Africa but has become very common all over the world; another one is patin, a local Kalimantan species that has also become a very common consumption fish species. Both have been doing very well in our ponds, although our patin grow a little better and faster in semi-peat swamp water.

Fish harvesting

Encouraging community participation and the uptake of this low-impact fish farming.

Patin - common species of fish found in Kalimantan.

Patin – common species of fish found in Kalimantan, Borneo

Just recently Kampung Konservasi decided to empty its fish ponds because we wanted to fix the walls. We did not expect that there will be so much fish! In only this one harvest, we managed to sell 56 kilograms of fish to the local housewives and restaurants. In 2008 alone, our alternative fish farm produced more than 200 kilograms of fish and sold well in the local market. Once again, Kampung Konservasi have proven to the local communities that fish farming is another potential income-generating activity for this area.


Sally (Yayorin)

School Visit to Kampung Konservasi

“By listening I know; By seeing I understand; By doing I make a difference.”

The children enthusiastically approached the two cows in their stable. In their hands were the newly-cut, fresh, green leaves. They waited impatiently for their turns, and their face lit up when the cows ate the leaves.

Feeding Kampung Konservasi’s cows

Feeding the cows is probably a simple and common thing for those who live in small villages and have cows. For these children from Islam Terpadu Elementary School, however, this simple thing became an extraordinary experience. It was probably the first time they ever saw a cow in their life. The participants on this visit were 1st grade students, 55 of them, and 5 of their teachers.

Feeding the cows was one of education activities we conducted during this school visit at Yayorin’s Kampung Konservasi. This outdoor learning focuses to integrate knowledge the children learn from school with some field experiences. This way, students not only understand the theories and facts, but most importantly, understand and respect the knowledge they receive.

School Visit to Kampung Konservasi

Another activity that the children found very exciting was when they were asked to plant vegetable seeds. This time, they planted pokchai ( a type of vegetable similar to chinese spinach) in black polybags. With enthusiasm they grabbed handfuls of soil that was already mixed with organic compost and put it in the polybags. Each of them made a little hole on the soil with a finger, put one seed in it, and covered it with soil. Finally, they carefully watered the planted seeds. The children really loved it!

Sowing Seeds

Other than feeding the cows and planting vegetable seeds, the children also watched an environmental movie in our little theatre and listened to story-telling in the library. The morning passed by very quickly, and everybody was sad when we had to say goodbye.

Kampung Konservasi tries to use nature as a learning ”canvas”…where simplicity and friendship with the environment are keys to understanding and respect. By giving opportunities for young people to express themselves and learn by doing, we are actually influencing their behaviors and future choices. In the long run, we hope that they can then influence others around them, including the adults. When that happens, the world will definitely be a better place!

Thank you,

Riyandoko (Education Facilitator) & Sally (Yayorin)

Kampung Konservasi (November blog) – Sustainable Agriculture

An exciting development just happened at Kampung Konservasi this week that we would like to share. We finally published the first book on cabbage cultivation using the alternative agriculture method that we develop at Kampung Konservasi. Why is this exciting? The book is the result of long, hard work of our agriculture facilitator, Mr. Suwardi, who is now famous as “the cabbage man”.

Pak Wardi “cabbage man”

Pak Suwardi – photo by Yayorin

I remember the first time Pak Suwardi joined the Kampung Konservasi team. He came all the way from Magelang, Central Java, where he was a successful farmer and an experienced community facilitator. He seemed to me as a “typical” Javanese farmer: calm, quiet, simple and hardworking. Kampung Konservasi was nothing like it is now. The area was practically empty, just high grass and a few young trees. The first thing Pak Suwardi noticed was, of course, the sandy soil. He told me that he had no idea what to do with it because he had never seen anything like it before. We then agreed that the only thing that he could do was to do as many trials as possible and learn from them.

Barren land

Barren/sandy soil – photo by Yayorin

cabbage plot

Cabbage Demonstration Plot – photo by Yayorin

Pak Suwardi has been working so hard since day one. He wakes us as early as five o’clock in the morning and works on the demonstration plots right away before the sun gets too hot. He has tried so many different things, planted so many seedlings, spoke with so many people and made many “mistakes”. The amount of physical work that this man can do is incredible! He has changed the face of Kampung Konservasi, almost all by himself. Before we knew it, we had wonderful harvests of tomatoes, chilies, string beans and cabbage! The cabbage was a major thing because nobody has ever grown cabbage in Borneo before. Just like most vegetables available in this area, cabbages come from Java, shipped across the sea.

Book cover

The book to be distributed to local farmers.

Now, all of his experiences and findings, especially on cabbage cultivation, are written in a simple book that will be distributed to the local farmers. This book will be the first of many. Yayorin plans to publish a series of books on alternative agriculture, based on real experiences and field trials. These books are powerful tools that we can use to further our education efforts.

Terima kasih,

Sally (Yayorin)

Sustainable Agriculture Can Help Protect Orangutan Habitat.

Other than Kampung Konservasi’s simple facilities such as the library, theatre, etc., we also use most of the area as sustainable agriculture demonstration plots. We grow and successfully harvest tomatoes, chilies, cabbages, string beans…all organic! We also keep fish and cows. We believe that if sustainable agriculture is done correctly, it can actually improve the degraded environment, protect native species, as well as eliminating current destructive agricultural practices, such as slash-and-burn.

Agricultural Demonstration Plot

Agricultural Demonstration Plot

Sustainable Agriculture Plots at Kampung Konservasi

Natural Fly Trap

Natural Fruit Fly Trap

Almost half of Kampung Konservasi’s ground used to be peat swamp; a few areas of this swamp were even as deep as grown man’s chest. Many local people believed that nothing can be done in peat swamp areas, and we already proved that we can farm fish very successfully there, using very simple materials to make the ponds such as bamboos and sand bags. We also bought a couple of cows because they are the best compost producers, and we can also sell them at the end when they grow bigger.

Below Organic Compost – the secret to our success!

Organic compost

Aquaponic Demonstration Plot

Aquaponic Plots – Fish pond around the island where vegetables are growing.

Kampung Konservasi used to be a barren land it is now a thriving and lush place. We have encouraged the return of insect, bird, reptile and amphibian species. Through our agricultural practices soil and water quality has increased. In addition to growing vegetables we have also planted more than 100 tree species, ranging from fruit trees (mango, durian, rambutan, guava, papaya and pineapple) to Bornean endemic hardwood trees (ulin, gaharu, agates, and rattan, especially the local species). All plants have been labelled with signs showing the local, Indonesian, English and Latin names and information about the importance of the plant or its useful properties.



Nursery and seedlings

Kampung Konservasi Sign

Kampung Konservasi Entrance Sign

Everything is to demonstrate to the local people and farmers that sustainable agriculture is a very promising income-generating activity for them to do. We are proud to report that individuals and groups have already adopted our agriculture methods in their own gardens and areas.

Terima Kasih,

Sally (Yayorin)

Kampung Konservasi – Every Place Is A School. Every Person Is A Teacher.

Stephen only got back last night from being in the field and today left for Singapore to renew his visa – sorry no posts from him. So for this week over to Sally, from Yayorin…..

Kampung Konservasi (Indonesian for Conservation Village) is an integrated environmental learning facility ran by Yayorin (Yayasan Orangutan Indonesia) at the city of Pangkalan Bun in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo. What started as a dream, now has become a dynamic place where people come to learn more about how to live “in harmony with nature”, a concept barely heard of in the area before.

Forest Classroom

The idea of Kampung Konservasi is quite simple really. Because Yayorin believes that there will be no real conservation without education, we felt (and still do) that people, especially those who live surrounding the orangutan habitats, must be introduced to the idea of “nature conservation” in more direct, simple, personal ways. We need an education center; a place where people can actually go to. We cannot just preach and say “Do not cut the trees!” or “Do not kill the orangutans!” because most of those who did illegal logging practices or illegal wildlife trade in this area only did that out of necessity. They needed the money to survive. If we really want conservation to happen, if we really want people to take conservation seriously, we need to work with these people and offer them alternative ways to make a living.

Children reading at Kampung Konservasi

As I mentioned before, Yayorin believes that education empowers people. We believe that we must educate the young, and that is why in Kampung Konservasi we arguably have the biggest environmental library in the whole Kalimantan, regularly play environmental movies in our little theatre, offer small, informal “classes” for children to take part in and work together with local schools in many other environmentally-related activities. In addition to that, Kampung Konservasi receives visits from school teachers, student groups, youth groups, farmer groups, church groups, government groups and individuals almost every month.

Kampung Konservasi’s educational activities

Since its first opening for public in March 2006, Kampung Konservasi has grown so much. Through the Orangutan Foundation UK we have received operational funding from The Rufford Maurice Laing Foundation for three consecutive years; and some generous groups of people also donated funds for us to purchase more lands to enlarge our sustainable agriculture demonstration plots (more on this next time). There are still so many things to be done and so many people to be reached, but the future certainly looks promising for this exciting program. We hope that we can continue to bring you updates on Kampung Konservasi on a regular basis in this blog.

Visit us using this Virtual Tour

Terima kasih,

Sally (Yayorin)

Meet our partner, Yayorin (Yayasan Orangutan Indonesia)

We would like to introduce Yayorin (Yayasan Orangutan Indonesia) a grass roots conservation NGO. Stephen has mentioned their work in this blog because Yayorin are our partners on various programmes including the Belantikan Conservation Programme (see sidebar categories).

Yayorin are an inspiring and committed organisation and we have learnt a great deal from their work. Because of this we want you to hear more about what they do. Once a month they will post an update here and hopefully, if time and resources enable them, they can increase the frequency.

We value our partnership with Yayorin, which stems from our shared vision that nature conservation benefits local communities and that the promotion of this idea is reliant on an educational infrastructure at a local level. We fully support Yayorin’s education and awareness programme REASON (Raise Education and Awareness to Save Orangutan and Nature).

Kampung Konservais is a major component of REASON. Indonesian for Conservation Village, Kampung Konservasi is an intergrated environmental learning arena. Its purpose is to encourage learning about environmental conservation issues and to demonstrate sustainable, alternative income-generating activities for people who live close to the forests.

I haven’t been to Kampung Konservasi but those who have visited are captivated by the place. Here is a sneak preview (link to virtual tour). Sally Tirtadihardja, from Yayorin will blog about the goings on at Kampung Konservasi and I hope you will enjoy reading them, as much I will.

Many thanks,


Orangutan Foundation (UK)