Sustainable Business Programme Facilitator

founded in 2004
Volunteer Coordinator
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Coordinator | Volunteer Coordinator
Coordinator | Volunteer Coordinator
Book with Flex Option! Choose new departure dates or change to a different volunteer program at no extra costs.


Gain valuable teaching experience! You will be delivering a comprehensive Business curriculum to individuals in rural villages.
Experience a new culture! Whilst volunteering on the Conservation Programme you will live in rural Sumatra and experience the diverse cultures and traditions native to Bukit Lawang!
Work with an truly international team! The team here at Bukit Lawang come from all around the world so you will meet a whole range exciting, passionate and driven educators from across the globe!
Explore the Sumatran Jungle! whilst working with the Bukit Lawang Trust you will have ample oportunity to go on weekend expeditions into the jungle to see Tigers, Orangutans, Elephants and Rhinos!
Make and Impact! Every volunteer that joins our programmes leaves behind a lasting and sustainable legacy with both the trust and the community whilst also joining our dedicated alumni team!
We deliver our free sessions in business skills to individuals from rural villages and support them to start or improve their own micro-enterprise. This volunteer program is especially suitable for:
Age 18+

The Bukit Lawang Trust is a Non Government Organisation based in Bukit Lawang, North Sumatra. The Trust building is a community centre which provides free education to people of all ages from both the local community and farther afield in Sumatra. As a volunteer on the Sustainable Business Programme you will be directly involved in the establishment of new and exciting sustainable enterprises in the local community.

The Sustainable Business Programme aims to help set up micro-enterprises in Bukit Lawang and also support and guide current business owners towards sustainable best practice in order to protect the severely endangered Leuser Ecosystem. 

You will guide your 'entrepreneurs' through the process of establishing their dream job by covering the following key areas;

- Idea Generation
- Market Research
- Research Analysis
- Business Model Canvassing (BMC) 
- Managing Finances & Budgeting (Cash Flow) 
- Sustainability (Green Factor) 
- Business Management

At the end of the programme volunteers will assist in the setting up and starting of these brand new sustainable micro enterprises, reducing poverty through livelihoods diversification and reducing the negative environmental impact through facilitating a workforce shift to sustainable jobs. 

Typical day

Volunteering at the Trust is no gap year holiday, our volunteers typically work from 08:00 to 18:00 on week days, and occasionally on weekends for training events and action days. We maintain an ethos of hard work and selfless commitment and all of our volunteers are here to serve the local community. However, that doesn’t stop us having a life changing experience whilst we are at it! 

A typical day starts at 07:00 with breakfast. On Mondays we have a Hub meeting where all of the staff and volunteers come together to plan the week ahead. Following this, you will begin your sessions. The Youth Ranger Programme and ESL Programme have one or more lessons each day although some days teaching is only in the afternoons. When you are not planning or teaching classes you can join the free fitness sessions here at the Trust or take on your own projects doing renovations or other community work here at The Hub. We also send out volunteers to help out at the local Trashbank, turning plastic into new products and supporting the efforts of rubbish processing and collection.   Weekends are your own, however occasionally, for example on events such as volunteer induction, phase review and volunteer debrief, you may also find that the Trust has arranged some incredible activities for you. On weekends when you are not trekking in the jungle or rafting down rivers you will have a great opportunity to immerse yourself in Sumatran culture and cuisine, with a range of guest houses, restaurants and even one bar Bukit Lawang has plenty to offer!

Free-time activities

You can go trekking from Bukit Lawang to Gunung Leuser National Park and see the famous Sumatran Orangutan. Most volunteers do a two day one night trek and usually are fortunate enough to see Orangutans.

In Bukit Lawang there is a river which runs through the village that people often go swimming in or relax and have a coffee or beer on the river.

There are multiple bars and guest houses with extremely friendly locals and live music on most nights.

Our volunteers often read, and relax on the hammock, go for walks, visit newly made friends in town, blog, study Indonesian, rent a bike and go for a ride in the countryside!  Other places that may be of interest are below:

At the weekend there are innumerable places located nearby that are a must see!

 Batu Katak - A quiet place on the river and near waterfalls. 

 Batu Rongring - Beautiful for trekking.

 Berestagi - For long weekends or traveling before or after volunteers can visit this lovely town in the mountains and go trekking. It is a bit colder here and that makes it a popular place among locals and tourists!

 Lake Toba - A beautiful island (Samosir) in the middle of the lake is home to waterfalls, hot springs, beaches, and more.

Water Sports


In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (intermediate level)
Criminal Background Check
Education Requirements
English, Business, Conservation at High School level
Required Documents
CV and Letter of Interest
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
There are no essential qualifications or experience for this programme however some experience teaching or instructing/ leading sessions is ideal, and any experience of business, is also extremely helpfull, though not required.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 08:00 - 18:00

What's Included

Services by Bukit Lawang Trust

We ask all of our volunteers to fundraise before coming out to Sumatra a minimum of £1000 GBP for the 8 weeks. Alternatively, some people choose to just pay this fee if they have no time to fundraise beforehand. We ask for a non-refundable deposit of £150 on booking your place in order to reserve your space and to cover registration costs.    In addition to this, you will need to pay for the cost of your volunteer visa, which is £280 and lasts 60 days.  


This fee covers:

·   Accommodation - shared dorm room

·   Lunchtime meals cooked by our hub chef Mon-Fri

·   Transport to and from Medan airport to the Trust.

·   Free Jungle FIIT exercise classes three times per week at the Trust Hub.

·   Our staff will provide all of the training you need to teach our programs, and support you throughout your volunteering journey. 

·   An overnight, 2 day jungle trekking experience with experienced local guides

·   Orientation challenges

·   A workshop with a local business- e.g basket weaving, carving, fabric printing, soap making, cookery

·   A phase review team building weekend

·   Indonesian language lessons by our Indonesian Programme Coordinators

Airport Pickup at Kuala Namu International Airport
The Trust provides transport from the airport to Bukit Lawang and the return journey at the end of the cycle. However, if you choose to continue travelling after your placement this transport is not included in your programme fees. We are located around four hours drive from the nearest international airport (Kuala Namu International Airport) in Medan. 
The rooms are three or four beds to a room.  Each volunteer is given a key to their dorm, and the from door to the Trust. We have 4 bathrooms: 2 western style and 2 Indonesian style. We have free wifi at The Trust building. 
Dorm Room
Food & Beverages
Lunch is included in your volunteer fees, and in the evenings we either eat out or we hold cooking nights at the Trust. At the weekends, most volunteers prefer to eat in the village or along the river at one of the guesthouses for dinner. 
Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Kuala Namu International Airport (KNO) in Kuala Namu. We assist you to find cheap flights to Indonesia.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Indonesia provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in Indonesia you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Indonesia.

Dates & Fees


Details on arrival

In 2023 we have 5 volunteer intakes during the year as follows:


Orangutan Cycle: Friday 6th January - Sunday 5th of March 

Tiger Cycle: Friday 5th of May - Sunday 2nd July 

Elephant Cycle: Friday 7th July - Sunday 3rd September

Leopard Cycle: Friday 8th September - Sunday 5th of November

Rhino Cycle: Friday 10th November - Sunday 17th December


The dates for 2024 are likely to be as follows but may change slightly depending on public holidays and events:

Orangutan Cycle: Friday 12th January - Sunday 10th of March 

Tiger Cycle: Friday 19th of April - Sunday 16th June 

Elephant Cycle: Friday 28th June - Sunday 25th August

Leopard Cycle: Friday 30th August - Sunday 27th October 

Rhino Cycle: Friday 1st November - Sunday 15th December (6 weeks only)

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
8 - 8 weeks

Program fees

Costs: Prices in USD
8 weeks (min. stay)
8 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees
$159 /week

The organization charges its fees in GBP. The price table in USD is subject to currency fluctuation. Bukit Lawang Trust will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with Bukit Lawang Trust during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.

Why book with Volunteer World

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Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if Bukit Lawang Trust cancels your trip
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We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Bukit Lawang Trust.

What are people saying about Volunteer World?

Sustainable Business Programme Facilitator

We deliver our free sessions in business skills to individuals from rural villages and support them to start or improve their own micro-enterprise.


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