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    Blog Posts (19)
    • Volunteering at the Trust

      After validating my baccalaureate, I decided to take a gap year in order to discover new cultures and experiences. My wish was to use my time profitably, and help NGO’s who had the same conviction as me, that education is the only tool to help future generations be responsible and conscious. After some research and procedures, I arrived on the island of Sumatra nearly 1 month ago, more precisely in the village of Bukit Lawang. What immediately struck me was the kindness of the inhabitants who welcome volunteers with open arms. People are so sweet and full of kindness. The first value is respect, and that is what unites everyone. Things seems so simple and people take their time, as it should be everywhere. In the Bukit Lawang Trust, my role is to teach Conservation lessons to children of all ages and Sustainable business lessons for adults. Students are always motivated and willing to learn more about what pushes you to give the best of yourself during this adventure. They love to play games; they are always respectful and joyful. Here, access to education is an opportunity and we should think the same in the western world. You feel like you’re out of time. During your free time, you can go and have an amazing swim in the river at 5 minutes’ walk of the school (much appreciated after a hot day!)  but also wander around in the village of Bukit Lawang. On Fridays, there is an amazing food and clothes market which is so nice to visit! You can also do some jungle trekking; it is simply an amazing experience. Twice a week you can participate in aerobics/yoga sessions. Every Saturday people go out and meet up in one of the bars of the town. These evenings are usually very fun and allow people to meet and talk to each other around an amazing jam! I was pleasantly surprised to see so many other volunteers from all over the world based in other NGO’s in the region, it allows everyone talk about their own experience. One point which seems essential to me to talk about, is the landscapes. They truly remind you of the beauty of nature: the importance of conservation and protecting this Fauna and Flora. It is becoming urgent to protect these species, which must now fight to survive. Surrounded by this vegetation, you feel like you’re out of time. I strongly recommend without hesitation to volunteer at the Bukit Lawang Trust. This experience is incredible at all levels, especially humanly and culturally. You will experience much more than just a volunteer experience, you will live a life experience that will make you more aware about so many subjects, and the person you are. It will probably give you the desire to stay much longer than expected, or at least to come back very soon! Venitia Conservation Volunteer from Mauritius

    • Living Somewhere New

      My name is Kamilla and two weeks ago I started my placement at the Bukit Lawang Trust. Back home in Berlin, I study social work and that is what brought me here, to this beautiful place. I am also a passionate traveller and always excited to have new experiences. There is however, a big difference between travelling to another country and working and living there. So, before I started my internship, I had many questions about what awaited me. Maybe I can give you a little jump start on your time. Starting a volunteer placement in a different country, it is most likely that you will come across a different lifestyle and culture. This is something you don’t need to worry about, you should see it as a chance to grow and gain knowledge. Speaking from experience – you will adapt to this really quickly. Locals here understand that volunteers and tourists come from a very different culture to their own. Anyway, the first priority for you should always be to respect the other culture - after all you are a guest in their country. To be prepared for what is lying ahead of you, you can do some research about cultures in the area you are planning to go to. One thing is for sure - Indonesians love spicy food. So if you can´t handle spice, you might be really happy to know these words “Tidak pedas” (not spicy) when you go somewhere for food. Another thing you probably have to adapt to as a European, is Indo-time – so just leave your thinking that everything has to happen on time behind and take it chilled. When you are in a place where everybody is greeting each other and being so friendly and helpful, you might find yourself feeling more connected to this new way of living together than you expected. Kamilla Conservation Volunteer from Germany

    • First Impressions

      Selamat siang lovely People !! We are Maxi and Lukas, two social work students from Berlin and we are looking forward to be a part of the Trust Center team for the next few months. Our first impression of the place and its inhabitants is positive through and through. All people are extremely friendly and helpful. Even though people do not have much, they always show their gratitude for life with a big smile on their faces. We have only been here for a week, but already we feel very connected with the local community. As we ride our bikes through the streets and paths of Bukit Lawang, many beaming children and their parents wave to us. After a warm welcome from the great team on Monday, we went with the kindergarten children on their weekly rubbish pick-up in the surrounding streets. The children had a lot of fun on the litter pick and then this week were rewarded with small sweets! Every morning, the Trust team comes together for a meeting to discuss the plan for the upcoming day. At 13 o'clock, the good-humored Fitri conjures up perhaps the best food in Bukit Lawang. After lunch and a break, we accompanied and supported the English lessons. The topics this week were emotions, feelings, temperatures and weather. On Tuesday evening we celebrated together Fitri's birthday party in the BL Indah followed by a pub quiz. On Thursday we had a special visit from a school near Medan. The 100 students arrived at Erna's Ecofarm in the morning, in 2 huge army trucks! There, for the first time, we taught a class independently in the blazing sun. With the help of interaction games, we introduced the students to the topics "colours" and "animals". After all the classes, every subject learned, we enjoyed an exceptionally good lunch together, courtesy of Erna. Then the day continued with the BLT Olympics, in which the students had to complete various tasks, such as "The floor is lava or get through the spiders web". Last but not least, we were glad that we were able to continue the circus project initiated by former volunteers Jasmin and Toni. For the first time, the children have proven themselves on a Diablo and various juggling and balancing tasks. It was nice to see how enthusiastic the children were there. After a farewell and many photos, the school received a BLT certificate. Our first week was a fantastic, but also exhausting experience. We are looking forward to a wonderful time in the beautiful Bukit Lawang. Maxi and Lukas- Volunteers from Germany

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    • Campaigns | Bukit Lawang Trust

      Campaigns Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; Indeed, its the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead. Here you can find all of the campaigns and online movements our staff, volunteers and alumni have launched! World Clean Up Day World Clean Up Day event in Bukit Lawang. Conservation Meeting Food Parcel Delivery School Bus Festival University English Camp jungle trip Conservation Festival Litter Pick Graduation Festival Festival Jungle Trek - Mahatma Ghandi Take part in exciting social campaigns as part of your placement with us! "Be the change you want to see in the world.." Programs... Give a gift that keeps on giving this festive season! A Gift that Goes Further Consider giving a present that goes further this festive season. By donating to the Bukit Lawang Trusts Festive appeal your gift will go all the way to North Sumatra, helping us to continue the essential work that we deliver in Bukit Lawang over the next year. ​ In return for your generous support you will recieve our limited edition gift certificate, ranging from £5 to £50 making them perfect for anything from stocking fillers to show stopping gifts. ​ £5 could buy notebooks & pens for our two kindergarten classes. £10 could pay for transport for one of our English classes to attend school for an entire week! £15 can buy workbooks for our 250+ students! £20 can keep the entire education centre running for a week! £25 could cover the salary of on of our phenomenal local educators at the centre, allowing us to provide free education to hundreds of children for an entire month! £30 - £40 could fund the training of the next generation of Jungle Rangers as part of our 'Youth Ranger Program. £40 - £50 can help our Entrepreneurs escape poverty by establishing their own micro enterprises on our YSE program. ​ ​ OK ... I'm In! - what do i do? To send a Festive gift certificate to your family or friends, follow these simple steps! ​ 1. Decide on how much you wish to donate. 2. Click the donate button below! 3. Leave a payment reference of 'BLT Christmas Appeal' & make sure you share your email address so we can send you your certificate! 4. wait for your very own limited edition festive certificate to arrive in your inbox! Its not too late! Why not give your loved ones a birthday gift that keeps on giving!? Elderly Community Members As part of our Jungle Food Programme, we provide monthly food packages to 20 elderly and impoverished individuals in the local community, many of whom are disabled. These monthly food packages cost us £70 in total – including transport costs. We are looking for 7 individuals to commit just £10 per month to this project to ensure that it continues into 2021. If you are interested in supporting this cause, please donate below and e-mail us at to confirm the purpose of your donation. Feed The Fifty! #FeedtheFifty As a result of the Coronavirus destroying Bukit Lawang’s economy and isolating the village, causing food prices to rocket, in May we launched the challenge. #FeedTheFifty ​ Our goal was to hand out food parcels to fifty student's families before Eid al-Fitr. We are delighted that we massively exceeded this target In the three months in which Bukit Lawang remained closed to tourists (May-July 2020) we were able to deliver 339 food parcels, ensuring that those who normally relied on tourism for an income did not go hungry as a result of the pandemic. ​ Run to keep us running On the 29th of August our Head of Conservation and co-manager, Sam, took on the enormous challenge of running from Carlisle to Newcastle to raise funds to keep the Trust operating during these difficult times. Sam was able to raise £2,240, which was enough to ensure the Trust is financially secure until 2021. Look but DONT touch Launched in October 2019. Our #Lookbutdonttouch campaign was set up to re-educate people on the harm caused by touching wild animals. ​ Anywhere you look online, you can find a mass of tourist selfies holding hands with orangutans or touching wild animals. But there is very little information on what this actually causes... What many people don't know is that touching wild animals can be harmful and even deadly to them. A common cold for example is something that Humans have developed an immunity to over hundreds of years, however an orangutan living only in tropical rainforests may never have been exposed to it, its immune system may struggle to cope with the virus and ultimately without intending, our Trek in the jungle could be fatal to these endangered animals. Additionally in the Leuser Ecosystem and In Bukit Lawang, there is a growing concern that tourists feeding wild animals on Treks is teaching them a dependency that is unsustainable, and potentially harmful if the source of food from Tourists ever stopped, as it has in recent times with the outbreak of COVID-19, and the ban on travel. ​ We're calling on you to comment on any picture you see online of people touching wild animals with the to spread this vital message! #lookbutdonttouch Thank you!

    • Alumni | Bukit Lawang Trust

      Welcome Bukit Lawang Trust Alumni! The Journey doesn't end here! We pride ourselves in being a grassroots charity, and we see our volunteers as our family! That's why our placements don't end when you leave Indonesia! Not an alumni? Not to worry! follow us on our Facebook & Instagram on the links below to keep up to date on everything were doing out in North Sumatra! and to hear about exciting new opportunities! ​ Be sure to check out our volunteer programs our blogs and our Brand New digital placements on the links below! Facebook Instagram Programs Blogs Digital Roles About Us ALUMNI EXCLUSIVE! Because we're a big family here at the Bukit Lawang Trust, our volunteers do eventually leave us .. booo! but we never leave them! Our BRAND NEW EXCLUSIVE Alumni page provides a place to share stories, revisit memories and access exclusive content from our team on the ground. Including our brand new 'Jungle Cam' catch up with ex colleagues and students in scheduled group video calls and support current volunteers plan and organise their Help @ Home projects! I'm In! > OK! We'll let you know as soon as the page is up and running! Already a Bukit Lawang Trust Alumni? Fill out the form below to sign up and we will let you know as soon as the page is ready! Help @ home Here at the Bukit Lawang Trust, we believe in doing good, not because it looks good, or because we want reward. But because its the right thing to do! ​ The Corona Virus pandemic has shown us that no matter where you are from in the world, things can change very quickly, and you never know when you will need help. ​ That's what Help @ Home is all about! ​ From January 2020, everyone who volunteers with the Bukit Lawang Trust on any of our placements or internships will take part in our Help @ Home movement at the end of the program! ​ HELP @ HOME: The Help @ Home project is all about carrying on the good work that you have been doing throughout your placement with us after you return home. ​ First identify a problem or issue in our home community, and then using everything you learnt in your placement, and with the support of an extensive Alumni Network and support staff at the Trust, come up with a way to help or solve the problem. This is Help @ Home. ​ HELP FROM HOME: We appreciate that some of our volunteers have busy lives outside of their time with us, and that's fine! Another option for volunteers is to do a Help From Home project to raise awareness and funds for the Bukit Lawang Trust. ​ This could be in the form of a Sponsored car wash, a Pub Quiz or an online fundraiser. ​ Whichever you decide to do, we will be here to support you every step of the way! ​ ​ #Help@Home

    • FAQs | Bukit Lawang Trust

      Frequently Asked Questions Got a questions? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions to find your answer. How much does it cost? The cost of your placement depends upon the length and type of placement, our ESL Teacher placements are £800 and our YSE Instructor placements are £1200. For full details check out our 'Find A Program' page by following the tab at the top of this page. What additional expenses should I expect? Whilst your placement fees cover a lot! you will need to arrange your own flights, personal Insurance, and visa expenses. Visa costs are typically around £50 and flights typically range from £400 - £600 from most European Countries. Can I choose the dates I want to volunteer? Our placement dates are fixed, however we offer a wide range of placement opportunities and up to 5 different cycles to choose from for each. We also offer full flexibility with your bookings. With free cancellation and rescheduling until 30 days before your arranged placement start date. What's the acomodation like? During your placement you will be staying at our Hub in the village of Bukit Lawang, in North Sumatra Indonesia. You will be staying in one of our three volunteer dorm rooms, which are fitted with bunk beds and single beds. You will likely be sharing your room with volunteers on other programs so you will get to meet lots of lovely people during your stay. You can find a full description of the volunteer accommodation on any of the program pages by selecting a program from our 'Find a Program' page. Just look for the 'Life at the Trust' section. Do I need a VISA & whats the application process? To legally volunteer in Indonesia, you will need a 60 day Social Visa. This can be applied for at your local Indonesian Embassy. You can find all of the details and an application form on your local embassy's website. There are two ways to apply; - In person: This typically takes 1 - 2 days. - Via Post: This typically takes 7 - 14 days. ​ After you have been accepted onto your chosen placement your MRM will guide you through the visa application process and provide you with visa sponsorship. ​ **IMPORTANT - please check your local embassy's website for COVID-19 updates and restrictions.** Do I need to be a qualified teacher to volunteer with the Trust? In short... no. Here at the Trust we value experience over qualification as we understand that not everyone has equal access to qualifications. That's why we accept applicants with relevant experience, Qualifications or both. We also provide Comprehensive in country training for all of our volunteers when they arrive at the start of the placement, so no need to worry if its been a while since you've taught a class. You can find a detailed requirements section on each of the program pages for more info. How long will it take to get there? Naturally, this depends on where you are coming from. However, typically flights from most European countries range from 14 - 21 hours. This may also depend upon your layovers, stops and departure airport. Do you have WIFI? Yes! we have good WIFI at our Hub in Bukit Lawang. There is also WIFI available at many of the guest houses and restaurants around the village, so you wont have any trouble staying connected. Volunteers on our Eco-Farming placement do not have WIFI. However, your homestay is just a short 10 minute walk from the HUB. Do you have WIFI? Yes! we have good WIFI at our Hub in Bukit Lawang. There is also WIFI available at many of the guest houses and restaurants around the village, so you wont have any trouble staying connected. Volunteers on our Eco-Farming placement do not have WIFI. However, your homestay is just a short 10 minute walk from the HUB. What is the current information regarding COVID-19 We are constantly updating our COVID-19 information to keep you informed. Make sure you check the Corona Virus updates section on the home page for up to date information. Prior to arriving on your placement you will be required to provide proof of either a negative result on a PRC Test or proof of vaccination. Additionally during your placement we have many procedures in place to keep you safe, including wearing face masks, distribution of hand sanitizer, Temperature checks and more. What kind of time commitment should I expect? All of our volunteers typically work 08:30 - 17:00, Monday to Friday. You will have weekends free to go out and explore! In addition, on top of your day to day volunteer work, we also have lots of evening and weekend activities you can choose to join in if you wish! Can I fundraise the placement Fees? You may wish to organise a fund raising event to put together the fees for your placement. This is absolutely fine. However, it is important that any fundraising you do is not advertised as fundraising for the Bukit Lawang Trust, but instead advertised as fund raising for your volunteer fees. Cant find what your looking for? Not a problem! Email us at or chat with us live using the chat icon in the bottom right of your screen. ​ We're always happy to hear from you, and one of our dedicated team of team will respond as quickly as possible. Keep up to date - follow us on facebook To get regular updates on what our fantastic team in Sumatra are doing, be sure to follow our Trust Facebook & Instagram pages. Here you can find updates from our volunteers, staff and alumni, as well as lots of interesting posts about conservation & climate change! ​ You can now chat to our team on Facebook messenger, Instagram messenger and WhatsApp too! Find out what its really like... from the people who have done it! Check out our volunteer ran blog Tales from the Jungle on the link below. And get the low down on live as a volunteer from the people who have done it. ​ Find out new information about our programs across North Sumatra, and educate yourself on key topics of Climate Change and sustainable development all in one place. ​ We regularly post new blogs on the website so be sure to check back to make sure you don't miss out! Tales from the Jungle Find out who you will be working with! Take a look at our meet the team section on the About us page to find out all about the staff you will be working with during your placement with us! Meet the Team! Not sure if you have the time or the money? Not sure if you've got the time or the money for a volunteer placement in North Sumatra. Don't worry! we've got you covered! ​ The Bukit Lawang Trust are now offering two BRAND NEW and unique 'Digital Placements' for those passionate 'do gooders' who want to do their part but cant commit the time or the funds to a placement overseas. ​ Having a full time job no longer has to get in the way of volunteering for a charity and lending a helping hand! ​ Interested? click the picture below to check out our exciting new opportunities. Digital Opportunities COVID-19 SAFETY Get COVID-19 safety updates by clicking our germ logo anywhere on our site...

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Yayasan Bukit Lawang Trust Dusun III,

Timbang Jaya Jalan Besar,

Bukit Lawang,


Langkat Regency,

Sumatra Indonesia 20774,



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