‘Gundul’ Orangutan – Further Support For Shelters Required.

With regard our recent post re Gundul the Orangutan:


it appears to have caused some reponses. There are a few things which we need to make clear.

Michelle states in her message to us:

“The sad reality at present is that rescue centres are over-subscribed and funds limited. Asking a rescue centre to take in more orangutans when these are the circumstances can put the entire population in the centre at risk. Such decisions to rescue or not to rescue are not taken lightly. Until significant funding can be raised, and more orangutans released, this is likely to remain the case for some time. So PLEASE do not imagine that the rescue centres lack compassion, PLEASE do not stop supporting them, and PLEASE give whatever you can to help them continue to do the amazing work they already do”.


We, as animal welfare campaigners would never stop asking people to support Orangutan welfare organisations – quite the opposite – they are in desperate need of funding, just like the organsisations we represent – ALL animal welfare groups are strapped for cash !.  We ask that people help them either with a donation or a yearly adoption; membership etc.  As a UK organisation, we support the Care for the Wild Orangutan adoption programme, as it operates from here in the UK.   We are ornagutan supporter people.

We are told – “People could write to the Indonesian authorities, or better still start a campaign”  It is not our position as a welfare organisation working to help strays in the Balkans to now start a campaign for Orangutans in Indonesia; this is the responsibility of others directly associated with this cause – especially the major (animal welfare) organisations who dominate their web pages with ‘Donate now’ and ‘Give Monthly’ links; and who proudly show themselves as international charities with, in one case, offices in no less than 10 European countries, South Africa and the USA.

Some also claim to have ‘a team in Brussels who take part in relevant political decision-making processes’. They also ‘lobby and submit proposals to governments in individual countries where they can help improve national animal welfare laws’.  We suggest that these animal welfare organisations use their extensive supporter networks, extensive websites, extensive funds and their ‘political teams in Brussels’ to better highlight the suffering of Orangutans – that THEY get campaigns under way to further support this beautiful species by putting additional pressure on the Indonesian authorities.

We are told – “Should the Indonesian authorities not be paying more to organisations like BOS and encouraging visitors and tourists to visit and support their centres” ? – sure they should; without question.  This is where large funds and ‘expert campaigners’ from big animal welfare organisations (those with no less than 10 offices in the EU, South Africa and the USA) should possibly be looking at giving more priority to issues such as this; and supporting the extra publicity needed with funding donated by its members and supporters at the end of the day.

If the large animal welfare organisations with offices all over the world are going to take money from their members and supporters, then possibly this money or some of it, should be allocated to enhancing campaigning for orangutan protection.  Whilst we support the work of any animal welfare organisation, contact with supporters and providing feedback to them is one of the prime issues that should be considered.  From all of our mails relating to the issue of Gundul, which includes writing ourselves, if BOSFCEO Mr. Sihite even actually bothered to respond to peoples mails, then we would be seeing maybe some positive movement to help Gundul.  You have to ask yourself; do people want to put their cash and donations and support orgaisations which cannot even be bothered to respond to peoples concerns about any particular animal ? – we suggest not.

If BOSF CEO Mr. Sihite did respond to concerned people about issues, possibly by putting out a statement via all the global links he has, then he may find that he dramatically increases the support and possible funding that his organisation receives.  Giving people regular updates is a natural thing to keeping their support; ignoring them achieves nothing except helps to drive them and their support, and most importantly, their cash, elsewhere.  Take this point on board Mr. Sihite if you want donations from supporters; inform them; put out requests and info dealing with specific issues; don’t just ignore the concerns of concerned people.  We can guarantee you do not increase your supporter network by ignoring your supporters !

We are putting out a request for Orangutan help in Indonesia by way of the following:

Here is a link to the BOSF home page:  http://orangutan.or.id/

Here is a link to the BOSF donations page: http://adoption.orangutan.or.id/

Alternatively, you could support their release programme. A donation can be made at:: http://orangutan.or.id/donate/

It is clear that more sanctuary places are needed in Eastern Borneo. More people are required who are willing to dedicate their lives to saving these wonderful animals.  The people who work on the ground do what they can with resources they have, as we are only too aware.  As we have said above; one sometimes has to question where all the supporter money is going which is generously pumped into animal welfare organisations who have offices all over the world.  Does it go to the animals or elsewhere ?

We at SAV never ask you for your money – we do not have a ‘donation’ link or any ‘Give Monthly’ scheme; any money links on our site, as we wish all monies to go directly to helping animals.  Supporters are informed of different organisations undertaking different animal welfare work – they, and only them, then make a choice of how and where they invest their donations.  BOSF is one such organisation which we would give our full support to; and as such we ask that you, our supporters, consider them for future donations.  Only through supporting them can animals like grundul be helped at bigger and better sanctuaries in the future.

Nobody is saying that Orangutan rescue centre workers lack ciompassion; quite the opposite.  Experience with stray animal welfare work in the Balkans shows compassion is shown by anyone working with animals – tell us about it !

But supporter feedback and information supply is an essential part of the work – lose your feedback and info supply to supporters and you lose your supporters – simple as that.  No supporters = no donations to shelters and sanctuaries which very much need money.

End of this now; we will not be covering this issue any further – this issue is now for organisations directly associated with orangutan support.  They need to organise campaigns for orangutans – not stray animal groups in the UK trying to help street animals in the Balkans.  We are happy to promote their work on our site, but they have to do the groundwork for their issues.  And more importantly, they need to tell the world, not just ignore all the requests of concern from around the world !


Submitted on 2012/10/16 at 3:08 pm

Thank you for this balanced reply, and it is regrettable that BOS F felt unable to answer immediately.

They have today written to concerned supporters with nearly the same message that I put out: “Thank you for your concern for the orangutan, but please try to understand the sad reality at present is that our rescue centres are over-subscribed and funds limited.

Asking any of our rescue centres to take in more orangutans when these are the circumstances can put the entire population in the centre at risk. Such decisions to rescue or not to rescue are not taken lightly.

Until significant funding can be raised, and more orangutans released, this is likely to remain the case for some time.

So PLEASE do not imagine that we lack compassion, PLEASE do not stop supporting us, and PLEASE give whatever you can to help us continue to do the work we do.
Thank you.


Thank you everyone for caring for animals, wherever they are.





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