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Volunteer in Thailand: Gibbon Rehabilitation Project in Thailand

The Wild Animal Rescue Foundation of Thailand (WARF)

Street Address:
65/1 3rd Floor, Sukhumvit 55, Klongton, Wattana, Thailand
Bangkok 10110

Gibbon Rehabilitation Project in Thailand

Dates of Program
Flexible Dates
Both (group and independent)
Age Restrictions
18 Years+
Project Review

The Gibbon Rehabilitation Project (GRP) is a research division of The Wild Animal Rescue Foundation of Thailand. Khun Noppadol Preuksawan, the chief of the Royal Forestry Department in Phuket together with the Asian Wildlife Fund and support from WARF, established it in 1992. Terrance Dillon Morin was also a driving force. In 1994 GRP became a research division of WARF. The project's goal is to save gibbons and their rainforest habitat through rehabilitation and education

Project Objectives:

  1. Develop a method to successfully rehabilitate white-handed gibbons back into their natural habitat. The GRP has been testing methods of reintroduction for the past 10 years. Every reintroduction is a learning opportunity. Reintroductions remain a relatively new division of conservation movement as well as uncharted terrain for research.
  2. End the demand for the illegal use of gibbons as toursits attractions and as pets: Throgh the education of visitors at our Center for Conservation Education and Fund-Raising, the GRP hopes to create awareness of the plight f the captive gibbon and to the role that tourism plays in the demand for baby gibbons.
  3. To repopulate the last remaining rainforest in Phuket-Khao Pra Theaw Non-Hunting Area (National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department). The gibbons were poached to extinction in Phuket over 25 years ago. The GRP hopes to repopulat this forest thought the rehabilitation for gibbons that were previously being help in captivity. The GRP has successfully reintroduced group in October of 2002, a second family in August 2003, a third group was reintroduced at the end of 2004 and many more in the near future.
  4. To create awareness of the importance of conservation of the environment: The GRP is also a effective resource for teaching the local community about the importance of conservation. The GRP runds education programs to enable local villagers and children to see the forest and its animalsas an essential life supporting source.
  5. Provide the opportunity for volunteers to study the white-handed gibbon: volnteers come from all over the world to study the white-handed gibbon. The gibbons at the GRP allow for the many forms of research, such as reintroduction methods, behavioural research of both captive and released gibbons, and research into deseases of gibbons in captivity.

By means of our education programme we aim to reduce poaching and deforestation both gaining support for our project and assisting the conservation movement in Thailand. The GRP is an effective resource for teaching the local community and foreign tourists. It attracts international students and volunteers who wish to study gibbons. Gibbon conservation is not a problem unique to Thailand. What we learn here will be passed on to other projects with similar aims.

Major Responsibilities

Major job responsibilities:

  • Assist the Animal Keepers (preparing food, feeding)
  • Assist in the research (for instance behavioural research). The way the released gibbons spend their time is observed. Behavioural elements are registered, for instance: territorial behaviour, urinating, threatening behaviour towards the observers, coughing, sneezing, foraging, abnormal behaviour and singing. Special emphasis lies on dominant behaviour, the place of the individuals in the group, explorative behaviour and their behaviour towards people, e.g. the observers.
  • Building and maintaining the cages
  • Daily cleaning of the cages
  • Giving talks to tourists, telling them of your experiences and those of the animals at the project as well as enlightening them on the current situation of the wildlife protection in Thailand.
  • Teaching in your native language to local schools
Cost/Program Fee
Contact the Organization
What program fee Includes

The program fee covers:

  • Food and Accommodation
  • Travels made during the project

The program fee does not cover:

  • Your personal expenses
  • Expenses regarding your flights and
  • Visa Cost
Skills/ Qualifications

Skills and qualifications required:

  • Prospective volunteers must be flexible and should have the hunger to learn more
  • Should be communicative and a social person
  • Should have leadership qualities
Arrangements for Room/Food

Room: Volunteers can stay within the site of volunteering. Maximun of 12 volunteers can be accommodated there. Besides, Volunteers can also stay in hotels with minimal charge.

Food: Food in Thailand is good, varied, relatively cheap and easily available. Also the accommodation offers the possibility for preparing food together with the other volunteers. Restaurants, small cafeteria offers a good opportunity to order breakfast or lunch. Alcoholic drinks are expensive. Drinking unboiled water is not to be recommended. Drink only bottled water from bottles with a crown cork.

Any Missing Important Information

Passport & Visa: To visit Thailand you need a valid passport. A visa is required. Please check with the Thai Embassy in your country or your national volunteer agency to determine what is required and how you can obtain the necessary documents. For long term volunteers a non-immigrant visa with a three-month validity is required. Your booking agent will supply you with a letter for visa support for the Thai embassy. For volunteers staying longer than three months, they will have to renew their visa in Thailand. The WARF Foundation will assist you in doing so.

The Wild Animal Rescue Foundation of Thailand (WARF) 's other programs in Thailand