Supporting Wild Orangutans of Gunung Palung

This year has been a wild ride, but I’m still feeling thankful.  This thanksgiving holiday, I’ve decided that instead of focusing on Black Friday sales, I want to use the reach I have with my newsletter and social media to help raise awareness and support for Orangutan Conservation in Borneo.  So I hope you will take a moment to read on.

As those of you who have followed my work for a while know, documenting the lives of wild orangutans in partnership with my wife, researcher Cheryl Knott, has been a major part of my life’s work over that past 25 years.  Using the media I create to spread the word in National Geographic articles and films with NatGeo and the BBC has been a big part of what I do.  This is the first year that I have been unable to go to Borneo to continue this work.  Yet, we are fortunate that the non-profit group Cheryl founded, now run in Indonesia by an Indonesian team of over thirty people, have been able to persist throughout the pandemic in their conservation, education, and community support activities that all help to protect orangutans in Gunung Palung, one of the world’s most important remaining wild orangutan sanctuaries.

So I’m very thankful to them and for all their efforts, and I’m dedicating this newsletter and print-sale fundraiser to the Gunung Palung Orangutan Project!
Please scan below for ways you can help this important cause.

This image seems an appropriate metaphor for the wild ride we have all had this year.  I named this image “The Wild Ride” (way before the pandemic) because I find it quite amazing the way a baby orangutan, like this one-month old, needs to hold on all by herself while her mother travels high in the trees.  I especially like this image because it represents the primary rainforest of Borneo with giant trees, lianas, and truly wild orangutans living in their ideal habitat.  This is what we work to protect, so that intact populations of orangutans with all their cultural knowledge intact can persist for generations into the distant future.  

This photograph is available as a print along with other favorite orangutan images on sale now for my Giving Tuesday fundraiser (100% of profits will go to the Gunung Palung Orangutan Project, if you didn’t catch that already).

Ways You Can Help Support Orangutans:

1) Become a supporting member of the Save Wild Orangutans initiative.  Commit to a monthly donation of any amount from $5 on up to support the conservation efforts and receive our monthly blog updates.  Higher monthly contribution levels come with other nice perks!  Check it out here:

2) Buy an orangutan print to support the cause and give yourself a nice reminder of your support for orangutan conservation.  Or give a print as a gift!  I am donating 100% of profits from orangutan print sales to Save Wild Orangutans from Nov 25 to Dec 1 (Giving Tuesday). 

As the year winds down, there are good signs of hope for a better year ahead for all of us and let’s hope for orangutans as well.  Thanks for your support, and please do whatever you can to help spread the word for orangutan conservation.  As Margaret Mead famously said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.  Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has”

I believe that.  Let’s do this together.

PS.  If you’d like to learn more about our orangutan conservation and research work, here are the key websites:

Save Wild Orangutans – the portal for our community of supporters

Gunung Palung Orangutan Project home page