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Indonesia Wildlife Rescue (Sulawesi)

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Indonesia Wildlife Rescue (Sulawesi)

Assist at a wildlife center that helps to rescue, rehabilitate and release animals saved from the illegal wildlife trade.

Prices from US$1,445

Indonesia sprawls across 17,500 islands making up the worlds largest archipelago, stretching from Papua New Guinea in the east to the western side of the Malaysian Penninsula. Indonesia is a very ethnically and linguistically diverse country, with around 300 distinct native ethnic groups, and 742 different languages and dialects There are five main islands which include Sumatra, Sulawesi, Kalimantan (Borneo), Papua and Java, which is one of the most densly populated islands on earth with over half of Indonesia's population living there.

This project is located in North Sulawesi on the northern peninsula of Sulawesi island. North Sulawesi has become the most developed province on Sulawesi largely due to tourism and agriculture. Manado is the province's capital and largest city. The region is well known for its dive sites, nature parks and volcanic mountains. On land the Tangkoko Batuangus Nature Reserve is home to an array of exotic wildlife including crested black macaques and tarsiers whilst off the coast you can dive some of the world's best coral reefs at Bunaken National Park. 

For many years Indonesia has found itself at the centre of the worlds illegal wildlife trade. Countless exotic species have been exploited, removed from their natural habitat and sold on as food, pets, ornaments and medicine. Stopping this trade in wildlife has become necessary to ensure the survival of some of the world's most threatened species. Wildlife centres, such as this one, have been set up to help rescue, rehabilitate and release animals rescued from the illegal wildlife trade.


  • Gain hands on experience working with exotic wildlife
  • Help to care for rescued animals
  • Assist with the rehabilitation of rescued animals
  • Experience a little-seen part of Sulawesi


  • A letter of motivation
  • Up-to-date vaccinations for Tetanus and Hepatitis A & B


Location North Sulawesi, Indonesia

Preparing food and feeding animals
Cleaning enclosures
Maintenance work
Reforestation work



Airport pickup


Accommodation  Shared volunteer house


Before you go Pre-departure support
Travel advice 
Equipment advice
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt


All meals
Airport pick-up
Ground transfers to project
Project orientation and training 
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ back-up







A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.

What does the project do?

The wildlife centre was established to help care for the ever-increasing flow of confiscated illegally kept and traded wildlife within Indonesia.  Situated in northern Sulwaesi the centre is strategically located to deal with illegal trade from Indonesia towards the Philippines and onwards to Japan, China and Taiwan. The centre's vision is to diminish the trade in protected wildlife in North Sualwesi with a long term aim of helping to end the illegal wildlife trade.The rescue centre helps with the placement of confiscated wildlife either in a suitable homerange or if not possible, a suitable sanctuary. As such the centre provides long term care to animals who are not releaseable or transferable. The centre accommodates many different species of animal which can include; cockatoos, babirusa, sea egales, cassowary, sun bears and orangutans. The centre relies on the help and support of volunteers to provide the animals with the best possible care.

What will I be doing?

Upon your arrival at the rescue centre you will be given tour of the centre and be provided with your work schedule. Volunteers are divided into teams and together complete a daily schedule of work for 5 1/2 days per week; you will have one communal afternoon off and one personal day off. Volunteers are vital at this rescue centre to provide daily care to the animals and to provide behavioural and environmental enrichment. You will spend a significant amount of your time preparing food and fresh drinking water for the animals, serving it to them and cleaning their enclosures. As well as harvesting leaves/ flowers and fruits for food you will be expected to clean food bowls, equipment and food preparation areas. You will help to create environments that offer the animals the chance to express natural behaviour as much as possible and therefore can be inventive in your ways of presenting food to encourage animals to think and work for their food as they would in the wild. Depending on the needs of the centre and volunteer skills, you may assist in the building or maintenance of enclosures.  Seasonal tree-planting work is also possible.

If you are a suitably qualified vet or nurse you will assist in routine or case by case treatments. 

It should be noted that volunteers will not be involved with touching, handling or hand-feeding any of the wildlife - unless skilled/experienced vets or nurses.


Provided you arrive at Manado airport on a Monday before 6pm you will be met at the airport and taken to the rescue centre which is located 40km south of the airport, approximately 40-60 minutes away. If you arrive after 6pm a local hotel will be recommended (at your own expense) and you will be met at 10am the next day.


You will be staying in a shared volunteer house at the project site. Volunteers stay in male/female dorms with fans. There are shared Western style toilets and showers. The volunteer house has a kitchenette with fridge, dining area and a recreational area with pool table, tennis table, TV/DVD and WiFi. There is a terrace with sunloungers for relaxing. Laundry facilities are available on site.


Throughout your stay you will be provided with three meals per day. You will always have access to fresh fruit and bottled water. For environmental and ethical reasons, the meals prepared at the centre are vegan with the occassional egg. The meals will largely be Asian in style and as such you can expect to eat lots of rice and noodle based dishes with plenty of vegetables and tofu. If you want to buy any extra food, this can be done on the weekly shopping trip or by visiting the local village. Nut-free and gluten- free diets can be catered for if requested in advance.

Ten Most Recent Reviews for This Project

There was never a dull moment  | 19 Nov 2019
My time with the animals at the centre was definitely one of best experiences of my life! The ani...

Read more

The location is absolutely stunning. You learn to work with so many different species...  | 17 Nov 2019
The location (and the view…) is absolutely stunning. You learn to work with so many differ...

Read more


One afternoon a week a group excursion will be organised and all volunteers will have the option to join in. In addition to this afternoon you will also have one day off per week during which you are free to relax or explore the local area. There are many activities located within 1- 2 hours of the project site which can be booked locally, these include: snorkelling, diving, rafting, hiking, sea turtle safari and dolphin watching. You may wish to take a taxi to the city of Manado which has a wide variety of restaurants, bars and shopping malls. For something more active why not climb Mount Mahawu an active volcano for spectacular views of the surrounding area.


2 weeks US$1,445

3 weeks US$1,745

4 weeks US$1,895

5 weeks US$2,145

6 weeks US$2,495

7 weeks US$2,845

8 weeks US$3,145

9 weeks US$3,495

10 weeks US$3,845

11 weeks US$4,295

12 weeks US$4,595

Extra weeks US$545


This project runs weekly; please aim to arrive into Manado airport before 6pm on a Monday.


2 - 12 weeks


Before you go

  • Pre-departure support and documentation
  • Travel advice
  • Equipment advice
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt


  • All meals
  • Accommodation
  • Airport pick-up
  • Project orientation
  • Project equipment
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ back-up


Nearest airport(s): Manado (MDC)


  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Insurance

For detailed information on flights, visas and insurance, click here.


Please read our legal statement regarding the running of NGO projects.

To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.

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