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Made for Meaningful Travel

Your Extra Layer of Security


Orang-Utan Protection

Join us on a 4-6-week jungle adventure to help protect the endangered Orang-Utan in one of the oldest and most beautiful rainforests in the world.

About the Project

Our orangutan reintroduction project is in a remote location in the centre of Indonesian Borneo, in a designated release area covering 35,000 hectares of primary protected lowland rainforest and with several hundred thousand hectares of upland rainforest surrounding this inland from the rivers which are the only access. The area is known as the Kehje Sewen with our camp Lasik. We obtained permission to use this area in late 2011 and have since reintroduced 15 wild-rescued orangutans with 8 more to be released in July; followed in September with the planned release of 8 ex-captive rehabilitant orangutans – the first of 250 we hope to release in this forest. These are orangutans you may have seen featured on Orangutan Island (Animal Planet) or Orangutan Diary (BBC). Most of these orangutans were taken from the wild when they were very small, so they have to learn all the skills they will need to survive in the wild, and some of them may not be able to adapt. 

Your Itinerary 

Day 1- Day 4: Intro Days

The first days will be spent in Balikpapan. On your arrival at Balikpapan airport, you will meet your expedition leaders and the rest of your team, have time to acclimatise to your new surroundings and beautiful new culture. After a good night’s rest it’s time to start your Jungle Survival Training! You will receive an important safety briefing and introduction to the program. The topics include jungle survival, first aid, navigation and evacuation scenarios. Mandatory for all jungle expeditions this is the opportunity to prove that you’re tough enough to survive the remote wilderness that awaits. Schedule includes:

  • Personal safety & the buddy system
  • CPR & First aid
  • Belt Kits & Rucksack packing
  • Medical kits
  • Fire lighting
  • Natural shelters & camp layout
  • Navigation
  • Lost & Search procedures
  • Kit setup

Then the 2-day journey deep into the jungle begins! Overnight will be spent in a rural village, before arriving at Camp Lasik. Means of transportation include 4x4, boat and even a zipline to cross a river to the camp! All travel is variable depending on water conditions, if necessary we may overnight at various points on this route.

Weeks 2-4: Camp Lasik

You can finally start working and applying what you have learnt in the introduction! Your role as a volunteer is to help our monitoring research team with a number of physically challenging projects:

  • Rope Bridge Construction
  • Building of information posts, hides and look-outs
  • Community & village support
  • Monitoring and checking the orangutans
  • Potentially help with release of orangutans

You also learn about conservation in action. You will visit the low land orang-utan clinic to learn about orang-utans, their habitat and the threat from humans. You will also learn in more detail about your project that lies ahead! Working with the New Orangutan Rehabilitation Project, we head deep into the jungle to help construct rope bridges, hides and viewing structures. Location for BBC TV series "Orangutan Diary", we also trek into the jungle to track released orangutans.

Weeks 4-6: Camp Nlis Mamsi

As for Trekking, the area is amazing! There are no villages beyond us, the river heads up into the mountains which is an area of waterfalls, cliffs and caves, and the local villagers have a number of routes up to their caves and up and over the mountains down to ‘neighbouring’ villages in East Kalimantan.

To reward you for your hard work (and to REALLY test your survival skills) you’ll head off on a 5-10 day trek into the unexplored Borneo jungle to head to another camp called Nlis Mamsi. You’ll see incredible creatures, stunning views, be swinging through the trees, jumping into plunge pools and clambering through undergrowth. The volunteer work you will be doing at the second camp will be similar to the work done at camp Lasik. For the 4-week participants, this will be the end of their fantastic adventure and will be brought back to Balikpapan. 

Suitable for


Typical day

As the tasks at the camp vary all year round, there is no such thing as a "typical day" for our volunteers. The tasks you will take part in during your stay are rope bridge construction, construction and maintaining of hides and lookouts and information posts. You will also assist the team with their monitoring efforts and get the possibility to track orangutans that have already been released back into the wild. If possible, you can also help with the release of orangutans. 

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 16 years old on the program start date.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (intermediate level)
Health Declaration
Required Documents
Strict medical form
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
The fitter you are the better; however this expedition is suitable for ALL fitness levels. Your fitness will increase greatly over the course of the expedition.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

Any questions? Just ask. We at Gapforce are happy to help you.

Free-time activities

Volunteering and activities do certainly mix on this trip, as the biologists, vetenarians and our volunteers will be involved around the clock. Having lived so close to the orangutans for over a month, the trek provides an even deeper insight into flora and fauna and the life of different tribes in some of the remotest parts in the world.

Water Sports

Included Services

What's included?
• Comprehensive Pre-departure support and Webinar briefing
• Airport pick-up and drop off
• Welcome and orientation briefing
• All accommodation
• 3 meals per day
• All transfers and activities listed
• A Trekforce Expedition Leader throughout your stay
• A qualified Medic
• In-country support staff
• All Training listed
• Social activities
• 24/7 UK emergency backup
• T-shirt
Airport Pickup at Sepingan

Airport pick-up in Balikpapan


During your Jungle Training you will be staying in lodges with dorm rooms and shared bathrooms. During your travel upriver, project work and trekking it will be back to nature, staying in jungle camps, sleeping in hammocks and enjoying the untouched jungle around you!

Dorm Room Camping
Food & Beverages

Basic and nutritious, lots of rice and vegetables with occasional meat (fish, chicken, boar). In the jungle you will typically live off a Basic Army Ration Diet:
Breakfast: Porridge
Lunch: Crackers, Tuna & Peanut butter
Dinner: Vegetable curry & rice/noodles
Plus drinks, snacks and additional local food collected from the jungle including bamboo, river fern & katkong and local fruit like buapua, lansat, jackfruit and durian

Internet Access
Sorry, no access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees.

No worries, Volunteer World supports you in raising funds, checking your visa regulations and travel insurance. We also assist you in finding the cheapest flights for your journey.
Costs (Prices in USD)
4 weeks (min. stay)
5 weeks
6 weeks (max. stay)
Average fees

You can volunteer at the project site in Borneo/Indonesia between 4 weeks and 6 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Gapforce 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 must be made up to 30 days before to the volunteer program starts. This payment is also securely handled by PayPal or credit card.

Get ready to volunteer in Indonesia

Check out first

Visa Regulations
Depending on your nationality, you have to arrange your visa for Indonesia. Please check the visa regulations for Indonesia.
Travel Seasons
Find out the best time to volunteer in Indonesia and receive information on weather and climatic conditions.
Living Costs
Living costs vary with each destination. We give an overview of what you should plan as an estimated budget to volunteer in Indonesia.
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Indonesia.

What's next?

The nearest airport is Sepingan (BPN) in Balikpapan. 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.
Vaccine Checker
If you are intending to volunteer in Indonesia you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Indonesia.
What can you do in leisure-time in Indonesia while you are not working at your volunteer opportunity?
Kruing, Borneo, Indonesia

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