The CCG Trust has made a grant to the The Orangutan Foundation for funding towards the running costs of its Orangutan Rescue and Release Programme in Indonesian Borneo. Under this programme, the Orangutan Foundation rescue isolated orangutans and other wildlife species from areas where they are at risk for example, oil palm plantations or community farmlands, to prevent them being killed or injured. The Foundation will also rescue young orphaned orangutans being kept illegally as pets.

The Lamandau Wildlife Reserve in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo, is estimated to be home to around 500 orangutans and is one of the few sites where rescued orangutans are released back into the wild. Within the Reserve, the Orangutan Foundation run five Orangutan Release Camps which are continuously staffed to provide released orangutans with supplementary food (fruit) and post release monitoring. The Foundation’s vet routinely monitors and, if necessary, treats the animals.

Younger, more dependent, apes enter the Foundation’s soft-release programme, where they are taken out during the day to play and climb in the trees, make nests and learn to forage but are returned to their enclosure at night. This process can take months or years. In June 2017, two of the orangutans (one who had been previously kept as a pet) were fully released into the Reserve and are now living freely in the wild. In 2016, 25 wild orangutans were translocated and seven orphaned infant orangutans rescued, more than ever before. This growing trend reflects the pressure that Borneo’s wildlife, especially the critically endangered orangutan, is under due to loss of forest habitat.