Dubbo Photo News - - Dubbo Weekender -

or bi­o­log­i­cal rea­sons.

“The cen­tres aim to re­ha­bil­i­tate the an­i­mals and then re­lease them in to the wild again,” he said.

“We help cen­tres who need bet­ter equip­ment and ma­te­rial which they can’t get lo­cally.”

The process is thor­ough and can take many months.

“We start with the cen­tre and work out what they need and then we go through de­sign process, then ma­te­rial se­lec­tion to try and buy lo­cally. If we can’t, we find out where can we im­port it from. Then we or­gan­ise the ma­te­rial and ex­port,” War­wick said. “The de­signs are cus­tom-built for the needs of the in­di­vid­ual cen­tre.”

Pos­si­bly one of the most chal­leng­ing parts is the trans­porta­tion. With cen­tres lo­cated in ru­ral ar­eas or re­mote jun­gles, it can take a while for com­po­nents to get there.

“We fill two ship­ping con­tain­ers and the boat goes via Sin­ga­pore, then past the bot­tom of Bor­neo. It takes about three months to ship, and then the team will fol­low them over to help build,” he said.

The GWC team works out lo­gis­tics with the cen­tres, but it can in­volve a 30-plus hour road trip on a rusty old truck to get the ma­te­rial on­site. The GWC members, who have back­grounds in wildlife hus­bandry as well as con­struc­tion, do­nate their time to then help build the struc­tures as well as en­abling the cen­tres to be­come self-suf­fi­cient in or­gan­is­ing their own ma­te­ri­als and ed­u­cate them in the skills they need to carry it on by them­selves.

“Coach­ing has a two-fold ef­fect,” War­wick said. “It em­ploys lo­cals, and there is a bet­ter re­spect for the wildlife as they un­der­stand the lo­cal en­vi­ron­ment bet­ter.

“At the end we hand the project over, then it be­comes theirs to use as an as­set to en­cour­age more phi­lan­thropy.”

Since GWC be­gan less than two years ago, they have al­ready funded and es­tab­lished projects in Bor­neo and two in Malaysia. The first Malaysian job in­volved build­ing a quar­an­tine cen­tre for macaques (a type of mon­key), while the sec­ond in­volved the res­cue of sun bears which are a threat­ened species in South­east Asia.

Their cur­rent ven­ture, which they have been in­volved with pre­vi­ously, is aid­ing the In­ter­na­tional An­i­mal Res­cue cen­tre in Kal­i­man­tan with two en­clo­sures to house orang­utans.

“Orang­utans have al­ways been my pas­sion; it’s where it started,” War­wick said.

“When orang­utans are res­cued they are a bit like hu­mans, they suf­fer emo­tional trauma. They are nursed back to health and then learn to be wild an­i­mals again. They are mon­i­tored and put in en­clo­sures and do all the things that orang­utans can do.

“They then are moved to is­lands where they are de­hu­man­ised be­fore be­ing moved back into the wild.”

It’s a step-by-step process which can take four to five years. The pe­riod is longer if it in­volves a ju­ve­nile as orang­utans stay with their moth­ers for eight years be­fore they go their own way.

The cen­tre has taken care of about 1100 orang­utans since 1999, with 480 res­i­dents still there. It is es­ti­mated about 100,000 have been killed since 1999, putting them on the crit­i­cally-en­dan­gered list.

The en­clo­sures that GWC is hop­ing to build will cost around $38,000 each with the first ship­ment slated for Oc­to­ber this year. To this end, they are host­ing Dubbo’s first Ride for the Wild on Sun­day, April 8, at Vic­to­ria Park No.1 to raise much-needed funds. In­di­vid­u­als and teams of two or four are en­cour­aged to gain spon­sor­ship to ride for six hours, with at least one rider on the track at all times. There will be prizes on the day and all money raised goes straight to the cost of the en­clo­sure ma­te­ri­als.

GWC is al­ways happy to have more members join their team and War­wick is all ears if any lo­cal busi­nesses have in­ter­est or ad­vice.

“We are happy to lis­ten. We’d like GWC to be lo­cal and keep it that way so in 10 years we can still say it’s Dubbo’s wildlife char­ity.” z Dubbo Ride for the Wild

z Vic­to­ria Park No. 1

z Sun­day, April 8

z Cost: $15 per per­son

z More in­for­ma­tion: www.glob­al­wildlife­con­struc­tions.com

Orang­utans at In­ter­na­tional An­i­mal Res­cue’s cen­tre in In­done­sia.

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