Built in the heart of a forest restoration site, the Leuser Nature School school helps children and their parents become guardians of the last habitat on earth which is home to wild orangutans, elephants, tigers and rhinos, and thousands of other beautiful and irreplaceable animals and plants. The school offers free education to children from rural communities nearby. In exchange, their families get involved with the tree-planting at the restoration site. Help us keep the school running.
We cannot tackle the decline in orangutan numbers without taking a holistic approach to ensuring that existing forest habitats are safe and that local people are empowered to protect orangutans and their ecosystems into the future. Bukit Mas, North Sumatra, is a 100 hectare plot of land on the edge of the Leuser Ecosystem. Once a lush, biodiverse jungle, a few years ago the area was cleared and replaced with rows of oil palms. We are working to reclaim the site for wildlife, with local support.
Sekolah Alam Leuser, or Leuser Nature School, incentivises local farmers to become guardians of the forest by providing free education for their children in exchange for their active involvement in forest restoration and protection efforts. There are no other secondary schools in the area, making it extremely expensive and challenging for families to send their children to secondary school. Leuser Nature School therefore fills a vital gap in education provision.
In its first year, the school had 16 pupils enrolled, with their parents simultaneously supported to access sustainable farming methods and learn about protecting the forest. A further 20 pupils enrolled for the academic year 2019-2020 - a further 20 children and families who are benefitting from greater access to education and will therefore feel a growing affinity with the forest environment around them.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).
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