This was a rare and exciting opportunity to learn from the rainforest defenders of the Orangutan Information Centre.
Panut Hadisiswoyo, Founding Director and award-winning environmentalist, and Nayla Azmi, Communications Officer, shared their incredible work in a special interactive event on Sunday the 18th of August at Byron Community College.
The Orangutan Information Center, an incredible Indonesian NGO, has made a huge difference in northern Sumatra through their conservation and community development work in and around the Leuser Ecosystem, one of our most biodiverse ecosystems, that includes the planting of 1.7 million trees.
The Leuser Ecosystem is also known as ‘The Last Place on Earth’, as it’s the only remaining place where Sumatran Orangutans, Elephants, Tigers, Rhinos and Sun Bears still share the same habitat.
Panut and Nayla explained how their organisation reclaims and restores rainforest, and shared how they rescue orangutans, tackle wildlife crime, and work with local communities to transform their environment and their economy. Most important of all, they successfully engaged and empowered Australians with the knowledge and means to become rainforest defenders in their own right. We learned how one Indonesian NGO is transforming the land in northern Sumatra. Through their work, they are helping local farmers to stop logging the precious Leuser ecosystem. This was a unique opportunity to hear from award-winning conservationist, Panut Hadisiswoyo, Founding Director of the Orangutan Information Centre and Nayla Azmi, OIC Communications Officer.
Panut and Nayla shared stories about the permaculture centres they are ‘seeding’ across northern Sumatra. Their first centre, GAYO Permaculture Centre, nestled on the edge of the Leuser ecosystem, has already taught permaculture principles to hundreds of community members and school children. They are using permaculture to regenerate the land, transform community reliance on monoculture, and demonstrate there is a vibrant alternative to destructive slash-and-burn farming.
All proceeds went to supporting the work of the Orangutan Information Centre.
Further Information about Our Visitors
Panut Hadisiswoyo: The award-winning Founding Director of the Orangutan Information Centre showed videos of orangutan rescues and discussed his journey to developing the Orangutan Information Centre.
Panut is a UK Whitley award winner, a National Geographic Emerging Explorer and a Chevening Changemaker.
Hadisiswoyo: Panut’s son is an award-winning storyteller in Sumatra, and he shared
stories with our students.
Nayla Azmi: Communications Officer for the Orangutan Information Centre, Nayla has extensive experience teaching students from Sumatra, Britain and Canada about orangutans and their habitat. Nayla is a thought-provoking teacher who inspires students with her stories and her passion for orangutans and conservation.
Paul Daley has lived, worked and travelled in Indonesia over the past decade including twelve months with the Orangutan Information Center. He now runs tours to Indonesia though his company A Lush Forest.
Panut Hadisiswoyo, Founder and Director of the Orangutan Information Centre presented shared stories about the work, vision and history of OIC and shared videos of their work.
Nayla Azmi, Communications Officer of OIC shared stories about her experience and her journey with OIC.
Panut’s 13-year-old son shared a story about his experience and what it means to people of his generation
Paul Daley presented an opportunity for interested people to travel to Sumatra in February 2020
More about The Orangutan Information Centre achievements since 2012
over 1.7 million trees
Rescued and relocated more than 160 orangutans
Restored 2,000 hectares of rainforest
Taken at least 37 wildlife crime cases to the authorities
Provided 1,130 training sessions to communities
Provided Orangutan Caring scholarships to more than 120 University students