20 students and 2 teachers had a different kind community service program by joining Restoration staff to plant trees at Gunung Leuser National Park in North Sumatra.
The group spent 8 days in challenging environment of rainforest to meet their mission to plant as many trees to rejuvenate a degraded land. They were trained to identify tree saplings and pick seeds from Mother trees while braving the constant attack of blood sucking leeches. The staff taught them on the use of GPS set to find coordinates and how technology helps to improve reforestation processes.
Leaving their comfort of living in the modern city of Singapore, the students adapted to life of spartan’s living. There, they used murky water from waterhole to bathe and washing themselves and in the wooden cabin without walls, they slept on the hard damar wood floor to experience simple living. They also had first hand experience of living in rural setting by joining local villagers in their home as part of their homestay program.
In the end, they admitted that the journey has opened up their perspective of global issues such as environmental degradation and conservation of other species. They also learned about rural life that were once a part of old Singapore.
IUVA is glad that we have been a part of their life’s journey and looking forward to partner with more organizations to foster matured life’s experience among the cosmopolitan youths of Singapore.