Who We Are
Project Borneo is a Malaysian conservation organisation and UK-based charity, and is a development of Project Orangutan, started by founder and CEO Leo Biddle in 2006. Leo has more than 25 years of experience working in the conservation sector in the developing world and is one of the pioneers of truly ethical wildlife tourism. Originally the orangutan themselves were our sole focus, but as we encountered more amazing wildlife in need of our help and built relationships with the extraordinary people here, we realised that we could be doing so much more...
And so Project Borneo was born! Of course the plight of the orangutan remains of paramount importance, but now we also care for a whole spectrum of endangered species indigenous to Borneo at the Matang Wildlife Centre. As well as working in the field, we continuously strive to create new, innovative projects and sustainable solutions to some of the problems faced by animals and ecosystems in Borneo.
Matang Wildlife Centre
Matang Wildlife Centre is located in the Malaysian state of Sarawak, Borneo. It is unique among orangutan rehabilitation centres in being a rescue centre for all protected wildlife, as well as the majestic primates themselves, and aims to rehabilitate and release any animal where possible. This is a very ambitious mission, and Project Borneo has committed to helping this centre for the foreseeable future.
Leo set up the hugely successful volunteer project at Matang, which is now in its 14th year. We assist with providing food, building infrastructure, releasing animals, commissioning research and providing expert consultation - as well as helping with the day-to-day running of the centre. The volunteers play a key role here, and over the years we have contributed significantly to major improvements at the site. Matang also features in our eco-tours, which aim to educate and enchant, all in a responsible way. Please click below for more information on our volunteering and tour programmes, including downloadable info packs.
Throughout the charity’s history, it has been very important to us to make a positive impact outside of our own field. This is partly because we recognise that our chosen cause is not the only one in need of help, and partly because, having been welcomed with open arms by the wonderful community here in Kuching we want to give something back.
Using the platform of our fundraising businesses (click the button below for more information on these) we have run numerous events over the years in support of local favourite charities SOS (Save Our Strays) and the Heart Treasures Foundation, which works with people with mental disabilities.
We have also started a small volunteer-run eco-business making beautiful candles from recycled cooking oil and beer bottles, and plans are in the works for a local plastic recycling venture. The idea is to forge strong partnerships and long-term commitments which benefit not only Project Borneo, but the wider community too.