On the occasion of International Women’s Day, a global conservation organization, The Orangutan Project, is celebrating the launch of Borneo’s first women-led ranger teams, known as “The Power of Mama”. These teams are breaking down traditional gender roles, promoting equity, and making a powerful impact on conservation efforts in the region. In a year where the theme of International Women’s Day is “Embrace Equity”, these ranger teams are living proof of the positive impact of promoting gender equality, not just for women, but for the environment, communities, and wildlife conservation.
Every year, wildfires threaten the precious tropical rainforests of Borneo, causing damage to both human and wildlife populations, as well as contributing to climate change through spikes in carbon emissions. The Power of Mama teams are working to reduce, prevent, and fight these fires on the front lines, addressing two intertwined challenges: gender inequality and environmental degradation. By empowering women to be a part of the solution, they are tapping into a new section of the community, greatly enhancing their ability to protect forests, save wildlife, and improve the lives of those in the forest-edge communities.
This project is supported by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia, and Yayasan International Animal Rescue Indonesia (YIARI), and its impact is already being felt. The Power of Mama teams are restoring peatlands, protecting wildlife, including orangutans, and educating women and children about conservation efforts. Forest-edge communities are benefiting from reduced fires, increased awareness about the importance of forest protection, and improved health and well-being.
The Power of Mama teams are more than just protectors of the environment, they are role models, educators, and beacons of hope. They are showing the world the incredible capabilities and success of women in traditionally male roles. They are already making a difference, but more women are waiting to get involved. The Power of Mama project is made possible through the generosity of supporters, and individuals can play a role in this vital effort by making a donation to The Orangutan Project.
The Orangutan Project was established in 1998 with a mission to protect the critically endangered orangutan species from extinction and ensure their long-term viability in the wild. Today, it is a successful non-profit organization that has raised over $25 million to support a wide range of critical projects that address the challenges facing fragmented orangutan populations, including fighting deforestation and habitat loss.
The Orangutan Project’s leadership, including Leif Cocks, a world-renowned expert on orangutans, and Kylie Bullo, a biologist and zoo keeper, have dedicated their careers to conservation and understand the importance of empowering women in this work. By celebrating the Power of Mama teams on International Women’s Day, The Orangutan Project is sending a powerful message about the impact of gender equality on conservation efforts and the importance of supporting women in leadership roles.
In conclusion, the Power of Mama teams in Borneo are breaking down barriers, empowering women, and making a powerful impact on conservation efforts. They are proof of the positive impact of promoting gender equality and are inspiring others to join the effort to protect the environment and wildlife. The Orangutan Project is proud to support this life-changing project, and individuals can make a difference by donating to the cause.