A few weeks ago Burgers’Zoo, based in the Dutch city of Arnhem, organized an educational activity focusing on the Southeast Asia campaign and awareness-raising. During four afternoons in May Burgers’ Zoo organized the so-called ‘Rimba-round’. A few years ago the central area of the zoo was themed ‘Rimba’, which means ‘virgin forest’ in Malay language. In the Rimba 13 larger species of Southeast Asian fauna are housed, including four species of primates, three species of carnivores, large reptiles and hoofed animals. The Rimba will serve as the location to hold Southeast Asian campaign activities during several periods of the year.
Almost 1300 children (aged 3-14) participated in 4 Rimba-rounds. Participating kids had to answer questions about the Rimba species as well as about threats to Asian wildlife and biodiversity. Kids aged 10 years and older were invited to think about which of the 13 Rimba species they had encountered during the Rimba-round should be saved fom extinction. By attaching a sticker to the species the kids voted for the species that they think should absolutely be conserved for the future. This kind of activity intrigued families, it started off excellent discussions (how can the beloved tiger survive if no one cares for its hoofed prey animals?) and emphasized the need of habitat conservation.
By finishing the round the kids earned a saola hat, a bear or macaque mask or a banteng or tiger poster. Interactives made available during the Rimba-round included do-and-touch-tables about habitats, adaptation and habitat destruction. Animal parts such as a python’s egg and skin and models of gibbons hands and feet were also made available. Even the mysterious saola was present too, as life- size wooden model. In only three hours time the Rimba-round even generated €130 for the Southeast Asia Campaign by selling special campaign buttons.
Following the positive feedback and the overwhelming enthusiasm of the kids and parents Burgers’ Zoo surely will continue with hosting more Rimba-rounds in the following months.
For educational resources, especially designed for the Southeast Asia Campaign, go to the resources section on the Campaign website!