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Project information

Veterinary Nursing for Orphan Orangutans

To provide funding for the placement of Ibritinah, Orangutan Appeal UK's Veterinary Nurse, at Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre. Ibri is crucial in providing care to the orphans including feeding, administoring medication and giving regular health checks, as well as assisting the vet with emergencies.

On going

Charity information: Orangutan Appeal UK

Orangutan Appeal UK logo
  • Need


    Having medical attention available at all times is essential to Sepilok's orangutans. The average age of orphaned orangutans coming to the centre is between 1-2 years old, meaning that most would not have been weaned from their mother's milk. Therefore Ibritinah’s knowledge of the correct diet is crucial to the growth and development of the young orangutans. Ibritinah is an invaluable resource to deal with minor medical queries and problems, leaving the vet to deal with more serious cases.


    With around 80 orangutans at Sepilok it is important to have a qualified staff to care for them all! Ibritinah is the main Veterinary Nurse at the centre and ensures that 24/7 care is provided for all orangutans, including the babies, orangutans in quarantine or injured orangutans from the reserve. Ibritinah must carry out health checks, preparing specific meals for the orphans depending and assisting the resident vet with all procedures, including surgery.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To provide funds for an experienced and knowledgeable Veterinary Nurse at Sepilok.


    » Ibritinah has been employed by OAUK for the past 8 years and will continue to be employed for the foreseeable future.
    » Ibritinah‘s main duties are to ensure that 24/7 care is provided for the orphaned babies.

    What success will look like

    Funding Ibritinah's employment with OAUK will provide immediate and professional care for sick or injured orangutans.

    Aim 2

    Capacity building in the local community


    » Creating employment opportunities for local people at Sepilok forms strong bonds between international charities and the local community.
    » Locals are acclimatised to the working environment at Sepilok and are aware the environment and are able to use this in their work.
    » These employment benefits have enhanced the perceived value and prestige of a career in wildlife conservation.

    What success will look like

    Strong bonds and trust between the local community and Orangutan Appeal UK are created and will continue to strengthen while local Malaysian people are employed at Sepilok.

  • Impact


    The continued success of the rehabilitation programme at Sepilok due to the presence of experienced staff members. Ibritinah has a vast knowledge of veterinary skills gained from working closely with Orangutan Appeal UK qualified UK veterinarian and these skills will continue to grow with the on going employment of Ibritinah by OAUK.


    Forced dismissal of Ibritinah due to lack of funds could be a potential risk, however as Ibritinah's skill set is so fundamental to the success of the rehabilitation process, continued support for Orangutan Appeal UK by generous donors and fundraising activities will ensure that funds are sufficient enough to provide employment for all of OAUK's staff based at Sepilok.


    Reports from Ibritinah herself will provide information of her duties at Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £5,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £5,000 Wages Ibritinah is paid £417 on a monthly basis

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Grant £1,020 Guaranteed
  • Background


    The Orangutan Appeal UK is a registered charity based in the south of England, dedicated to the rehabilitation and preservation of orangutans and the conservation of their habitat. The Appeal is also authorised to work on behalf of the famous Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sabah, North Borneo. Sepilok provides medical care for orphaned and confiscated orangutans as well as dozens of other wildlife species with the ultimate goal of rehabilitation and eventual release into the wild.


    Employment of local staff increases the wealth of the local area in providing financial support to households. Their knowledge of the forest and the environment at Sepilok reduces the need for expensive basic training of staff.

    Essential medical attention available at all times at Sepilok provides vital care for sick and injured orangutans, increasing the success of the rehabilitation and release programme.

    Sepilok also acts as a useful education tool, raising awareness and vital funds.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre was set up 50 years ago and therefore has a long standing strong relationship with the Sabah Wildlife Department and the local government and community.

    Ibritinah has already been working at Sepilok for the past 8 years and will continue be employed for the foreseeable future. Her expertise in orangutan care and excellent attitude to work means Ibritinah will be employed by OAUK for the foreseeable future.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.



    Veterinary Nurse employed by OUAK to undertake duties at Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre.

    Mike Steel

    Orangutan Appeal UK’s Sabah Advisor.

    Sepilok’S Head Ranger

    Manages the care staff.


Could fund a whole month's food for an orphaned orangutan

I have seen the difference I have made in these orangutans’ lives, giving them that second chance of a life of freedom. This is what makes the job worthwhile, it makes me feel very happy and I feel so, so lucky

Ibritinah - Veterinary Nurse