Hello, I’m Kirah.
I'm eighteen years old and have recently been offered the opportunity of a lifetime; a chance to go and volunteer with members of my college in Borneo for 4 weeks. Borneo is located in Southeast Asia and has been recognised as a biodiversity hotspot, this means that every month three new species are discovered. The expedition is being provided by Camps International; an organisation that has been accredited with many awards, such as the LoTC Quality Badge for learning outside the classroom.
Each week we will be embarking on a different and eye opening adventure. The expedition will start with a week working with the Bornean community, from helping build community centres and schools to teaching the local children in an area where only 30% go onto secondary education. This element of the expedition appeals to me the most because I wish to study anthropology at university and also go on to become a primary school teacher. During the second week, the wildlife segment, we'll get the chance to go to the Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary, where orphaned and injured Orangutans are being nursed and prepared for release into the wild. The week will also include a boat ride down the Kinabatangan River, a spectacular way of potentially seeing Bornean Orangutans in their natural habitat. Week three involves the environment. Unfortunately since the 1960's there has been extensive deforestation across Borneo due to logging (half of the annual global tropical timber currently comes from Borneo), palm oil plantations and agriculture. One of the solutions Camp Borneo has done to curb this is to plant seedlings and slowly regrow the jungle for future generations and species. Overall Camp International has planted over one million trees in their quest to undo the damage of deforestation. This is a really important issue for me, as I'm always thinking of new ways to become more eco-friendly and sustainable, and I feel very strongly about climate change and how we can help reduce its potential life threatening effects. The final week, week four, will be the toughest week of them all; we will be taking part in a 4/5 day trek in the Bornean jungle. While on the trek I'll have the chance to set up camp with my fellow campers, this will include putting up my own hammock as well as cooking and eating what is around us in the jungle.
As part of my journey I will be fundraising in many different ways. The biggest hurdle I will be facing is a full length marathon, which will take place in November; at the time of writing this (12/05/17) I can only just run/walk 3 miles! I will also be doing many different types of sales, from chocolate sales to ice-pops sales, as well as hosting international nights, coffee mornings, and afternoon teas. My College will be fundraising as a team as well, to allow everyone to get to know each other and help everyone reach their fundraising target.