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Happy New Year everyone! Today is the first day in the year 2012. After a good 6 hours of sleeping, I wake up fresh when the New Year rain was still pouring like a waterfall on top of my roof. Before I wrote this New Year blog, I revisited the New Year blogs that I wrote last year and the year before that. I realized that I used the same title for the two New Year blogs: "New Year, New Hope for the Sun Bears".
Over the many years, I always have high hope for the new coming year. The New Year gives me new hope and new energy to achieve the plans that I wanted to achieve during the new coming year. Like many people, "Year" is the unit that I used over the years for my conservation and research work on sun bears and their habitat. From the first year I started to study sun bear in 1998, "new hope" has been accompanied me to what I have done and achieved today. It was these "hopes" that give me the new set of energy to propose plans and projects. The New Year and new hope of 2012 is no exception.
I personally want our ambitious plan of BSBCC to progress quickly. However, due to difficulties and challenges to raise such a large amount of funds needed to set up of the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre, we have no choice but to progress the project slowly by subdividing the center's development into "phases" according to the funding we managed to raise and secure at a time.
"Slowly but surely, we will get there."
Since 2008, we have raised nearly one million dollars to pay for the first bear house, the one hectare forest enclosure, the observation platform, the access road to the bear house, the boardwalk that link to the platform, as well as the operation cost over the last four years. It was a lot of money. Thanks to many of your helps and supports, we have successful raised it and wisely spent it over the past four years. This year, our bigger challenge is to raise another one million dollars for the construction of another bear house with another hectare of forest enclosure, the visitor briefing area, upgrade of the existing bear house, quarantine area, and office. I hope we can raise the fund so that we can complete the construction phase of the centre and open to the public.
Education is what I believe that can help save many endangered species and their habitat. "Only if we understand, can we care; Only if we care, will we help; Only if we help, shall they be saved" (Jane Goodall 1990). For sun bear and their habitat- the tropical forest of Southeast Asia, only when ALL OF US understand (not just few biologists, conservationists, or environmentalists, but general public from school students all the way to politicians and a country's decision makers), will ALL OF US care. Only when ALL OF US care, will we starting to help. Only after ALL OF US help, shall sun bears, other wildlife and their habitat be saved!
Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre aims to educate the public and make the public to understand sun bears and their habitat. We use a holistic approach that incorporate education, research, rehabilitation, and promote animal welfare to conserve sun bears and their habitat.
Please help us achieve this goal in the year 2012!
Siew Te Wong
Founder and CEO,
Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre