LITTLE IQO'S STORY: FROM RESCUE TO FOREST SCHOOL
Iqo, a female baby orangutan, was surrendered to the BOS Foundation on 3 November 2022 by residents of Tumbang Kajamei village, Katingan Regency, Central Kalimantan.
In order to curb the spread of COVID-19, the BOS Foundation closed all of its programs from visiting guests, volunteers, and researchers, starting in March of last year. This closure also included Samboja Lodge, our delightful hotel which is surrounded by forest and located in the middle of the Samboja Lestari Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre, in East Kalimantan, which is visited by both foreign and domestic tourists.
Samboja Lodge was built in typical Dayak style and architecture, using natural building materials such as wood, bamboo, and natural fibres, among others. These materials can wear out over time, and therefore, need to be replaced every few years. We have made good use of our time while our facilities have been closed during the pandemic, by renovating the lodge and making repairs where needed.
These works began shortly after we first closed Samboja Lodge to the public last year. Since that time, we have gradually carried out infrastructure work, including the replacement of exterior fibers and curtains, repairs and repainting of furniture, interior redecorating, and much more. Our lodge staff, who are normally in charge of hospitality services, have been busy conducting the renovations.
Not only have we made improvements indoors; we have also rejuvenated the exterior of Samboja Lodge: The gardens around the lodge have been manicured and refreshed with new plants. In support of the Indonesian government’s health protocols, we have also set up a number of hand-washing stations around the lodge for visitors and staff to use once we return to active operations.
This work on Samboja Lodge has progressed slowly, as almost all activities have been carried out by internal staff. We have paid close attention to every detail, to ensure that our future guests will thoroughly enjoy a comfortable stay. We hope it will not be too long before we can reopen, as we cannot wait to welcome guests back for an unforgettable time at our lodge, turning extraordinary experiences in a forest into beautiful memories!