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Supporting communities

Earlier in 2019 the Sumatran Ranger Project team received a call from a forest edge community living alongside the Gunung Leuser National Park, part of the Leuser Ecosystem in North Sumatra. A Sumatran tiger killed one of the locals' three cows and they needed assistance. Our team spent the entire night working together with a team of locals to drive the young female tiger back into the forest and away from the community. There is no predator compensation scheme in Indonesia to support families when a huge chunk of their livelihood is lost in this manner. Sumatran Ranger Project offered compensation for the cow after meeting with the family and talking about what it meant for them to lose a third of their herd. The woman in this family worked in an oil palm plantation cutting the grass for around $70 Australian a month. We offered them the opportunity to cease working in oil palm by making bracelets from the snare wire waste our team collects every month while on patrol. After ranger Jason demonstrated how to make the bracelets the woman and another local started this 'cooperative' scheme, which has meant they now don't need to work in oil palm and are receiving a better income for making the bracelets. This is one example of how we are trying to raise the standard of living for these communities through providing support and long term solutions to help them move away from destructive or harmful livelihoods and the setting of snares on the border of the forest. The bracelets are purchased by tourists with Raw Wildlife Encounters and retailers in New Zealand and Australia.

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