“My experience at the Jogja Wildlife Rescue Centre was life changing. I found myself completing tasks and experiencing things I never imagined that I would. And I absolutely loved it! I learnt so much working with the animals and even saw some that I didn’t know existed. My only regret is that I didn’t stay longer.”
Care for Rescued Animals and Improve their Lives through Enrichment
Large parts of Indonesia’s rainforests are being destroyed. So, hundreds of orangutans and other critically endangered species are dying or losing their homes. The orphaned young are frequently sold into the illegal exotic pet trade. They are condemned to spend their lives in cramped cages. Often they eat unsuitable diets and have to perform dangerous and demeaning tricks for human entertainment.
Rehabilitation and Release where Possible
The Centre will receive and care for rescued animals confiscated from illegal ownership under the Protected Wildlife Law. Whenever possible, the centre prepares them for rehabilitation. Many animals cannot be returned to the wild due to health or behavioural conditions. So, they make the Centre their permanent home.
Observation and Interaction, but NO Touching
The Centre is NOT a zoo. It does not exhibit the animals to the public except under controlled conditions for educational programmes. As a volunteer you will have a unique opportunity to get close and care for rescued animals. You can observe and interact* with them and contribute to their welfare
Support and Educate the Community through your Care for Rescued Animals
The Centre enjoys a close relationship with the local villages. These are home to the majority of the centre’s staff. So, this provides employment opportunities for the villagers. Additionally, it also helps to spread awareness of environmental protection and animal welfare at this critical local level.
A Note from Dan
“Jogja, one volunteer said to me, is the ritz of volunteering. Yes the accommodation is nice, the food is fresh and healthy and our in house chef can even cater for vegans (but you will get the odd breakfast :-)) but the people again make the place magical. Rosa, who is the most fluent english speaker at the centre is a delight and one of the most hard working people I know. Renae has taken the programme to the next level and introduced lots of new fun and interactive sessions in the afternoon, for example, the gamelan session where you mix with local youths who teach you about Javanese culture and at the same time practice and improve their English. Another new addition is the weekly visit to sites where eagles who have been rehabilitated at the centre and released. These visits to the release sites allows us all to experience the ultimate end that we want all our animals to achieve, back to freedom. Randy the new vet is very knowledgeable and interactive and loves sharing his passion for the animals with the volunteers.”
The Facilities Reflect the Limited Resources Available
Please note that enclosures for many of the animals are small and not intended as permanent homes. The centre receives no external funding. The management must do what they can with limited resources. Every effort is made to continually improve the facilities and the living arrangements for all wildlife. Your presence at the Centre to care for rescued animals enriches the animals’ lives. Especially, your financial support helps to improve the future for these wonderful animals.
Interacting with wildlife
As the centre is a rehabilitation centre there is a strict no touching policy. Physical interaction with humans can hinder their ability to be released into the wild again. Furthermore, as the animals are wild, they can act very unpredictably. A no touching policy assists to avoid injury.
Pricing for International Volunteers 2018
1 week £633
2 weeks £825
* Each additional week is an extra £212
Pricing for Indonesian Volunteers 2018
1 week 9,391,797 IDR
2 weeks 12,543,407 IDR
* Each additional week is an extra 3,151,609 IDR
Return airport pickup from Yogyakarta International Airport (JOG)
Three meals per day plus snacks, tea and coffee and free drinking water
Shared accommodation in twin room
All activities as per itinerary
English-speaking programme facilitator
Donation to the project (your fee supports the Centre’s operational costs such as animal food, equipment, staff salaries etc).
Not included: International and internal airfare, visa application/fees, private transfers, meals and accommodation when travelling independently, insurance and luxuries.
5 Easy Steps to Book Your Orangutan Adventure:
1) Please allow a minimum of 3 weeks for us to process your application and payment.
2) Contact us here with your initial inquiry – tell us about yourself and the project you would like to join.
3) You will receive an e-mail with more information and the application form to complete.
4) On receipt of your application we will confirm your reservation and inform you how to make your deposit payment. Your reservation will be held for 2 weeks, after which it will be cancelled automatically if no deposit is received.
5) Full payment is required no later than 1 month before departure. You may pay online by credit card or a direct transfer to our account.
It’s that Simple!! Once your deposit has been paid you will receive our Know Before You Go guide, which is packed full of useful information about your project and general tips to prepare you for volunteering.
Shadow an Animal Keeper
Working with a different keeper and group of animals each day, you will experience the full spectrum of wildlife at WRC Jogja. You will participate in enclosure cleaning, feeding, food preparation, maintenance and enclosure enrichment and spend a morning with WRC’s vet – the perfect opportunity to observe, learn about the animals and ask lots of questions!
Building enclosures for our wildlife friends – Building good, sturdy and spacious enclosures is essential for the animals well being. Thus whenever needed, volunteers will be assisting the animal keepers to build enclosures for the animals. Read more about building enclosures for our wildlife friends on our blog here
Kids Club English (for kids)
Every Wednesday there is a kids club English class for all children in nearby villages. The class has a local teacher who organises games and learning activities for the children to encourage them to learn English as their third language. This is a fun and interactive session where volunteers will help to organise games with the teacher to play with the children. You can also help raise awareness of environmental sustainability!
Don’t worry if you’ve never taught before – you won’t have to teach alone and your on-site facilitator will support you through every step.
One of the centre’s newest programs has taken the previous staff English to the community. The class is run by a local teacher who helps many youth (normally aged 15 – 30) to learn conversational English through fun interactive games. Volunteers will help as a “native speaker” to encourage the students to learn their third language.
Rehabilitation and Release
In the last 5 years the centre has released 9 eagles back into the wild in Java, many close to the centre. Other animals have been translocated to release programs on their native islands. One afternoon after work volunteers will have the opportunity to visit a previous animal release site and learn about the release program from the centre.
The centre is focused on building a strong positive lasting relationship with the local villagers. They do this by engaging in a number of cultural activities including a traditional gamelan (music) class and batik (wax art) class in a nearby local village. They also join traditional dances and performances near the village when they are performed. The centre also holds informal sports sessions in the village to encourage locals to interact with people from different cultures and practice their language skills. This is also a fantastic opportunity for volunteers to learn some simple Indonesian and make some new friends.
Friday evenings you will be welcomed into the home of a staff member from the local village where you will enjoy traditional, home-cooked Javan cuisine and maybe even try your hand at preparing some. The smiles are infectious and the delicious food just keeps on coming, so be sure to work up an appetite during the day!
Following your arrival, airport transfer, orientation and safety briefing, a typical day will look like this:
6:30 Breakfast & Brief
7:00 Meet Your Keeper – Prepare for work
7:30 Enclosure Cleaning
9:30 Coffee Break and Snacks
10:00 Feeding Time
11:00 Enrichment or Maintenance
13:00 Working with your keeper or Enrichment
14:30 Feeding Time
15:00 – 17:30 Kids Club English/Community English/Cultural Engagement/Release site
An individual daily schedule, including free days for sightseeing, will be created based on your length of stay and the animals’ needs at the time.
Skills & Opportunities
As a volunteer, you’ll learn about rescues, animal injuries, effective rehabilitation, enrichment and release. You’ll get to learn from Randy, the centre’s vet – and if any animals need treating, you may even get the opportunity to observe this and other animal checks. On top of this, you’ll build practical skills through enclosure maintenance and building, as well as feeding and enrichment. Volunteers staying for multiple weeks can gain more responsibility by briefing new volunteers on the project and the animals.
The Centre offers a “Community English” class for all locals and a club for local children to further the educational role of the centre, and provide a valuable cultural exchange for both locals and volunteers. As a volunteer, you will have the opportunity to take part in these fun and informal sessions. You will also have the opportunity to join a range of traditional and local cultural experiences including gamelan lessons and batik lessons as well as visiting a local family for a traditional Javan dinner; a delicious way to truly experience life in the village.
Shared (single sex) twin rooms with en suite (cold) shower and Western style toilet. Rooms come with air-con, drinking water, and tea/coffee facilities.
There is a communal lobby area with a television, where volunteers can socialize and enjoy meals together. All meals are included but you will have access to the stove and refrigerator in the kitchen should you require them, as well as a washing machine.
All rooms have private balconies where you can dry laundry or simply relax overlooking the forest.
Internet access is available at the volunteer accommodation.
Jogjakarta, Indonesia’s cultural capital
Yogyakarta is the cultural capital of Java and there are plenty of things to see and do on your days off: Visit the Sultan’s Palace, Prambanan temple or Borobudur (the world’s largest Buddhist temple), explore Mount Merapi (an active volcano), cycle through local markets and lush rice paddies or take in some traditional gamelan music and shadow puppetry – the choice is yours.
What are the requirements to join this volunteering project?
Volunteers will need to be able to speak English or Bahasato be able to communicate with the staff/facilitator.
The minimum age is 18 years old.
Volunteers will need to provide evidence of the relevant vaccinations and medical tests including Hepatitis A, B and C and TB.
Do I need to apply for visa to join?
Depending on the country of your passport and entry port into Indonesian depends whether you will need a visa. The centre recommends you speak to an Indonesian consulate in your home country for more details.
How many hours per day do volunteers work?
Activities with the animals normally run from 7am – 3pm and after work (optional) activities are normally between 3.30/4pm – 5.30/6pm. There will be snack breaks and one hour for lunch.