Orangutan Foundation International (OFI) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the conservation of wild orangutans and their rainforest habitat. OFI also supports research on orangutans and forests, education initiatives, both local and international, and brings awareness concerning orangutans wherever it can. OFI is profoundly committed to the welfare of all orangutans, whether captive, ex-captive, or wild. Established by Dr. Biruté Mary Galdikas and associates in 1986, OFI operates Camp Leakey, an orangutan research center, within Tanjung Puting National Park. OFI also runs the Orangutan Care Center and Quarantine (OCCQ) facility in the Dayak village of Pasir Panjang near Pangkalan Bun, which is home to 330 displaced orangutans, and helps manage the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, where rehabilitated wild born ex-captive orangutans were released into the wild. Through its field programs, OFI also provides employment at these facilities for over 200 local Indonesians. OFI also owns Rusti, an adult male orangutan rescued from a backyard zoo in New Jersey, now on permanent loan to the Honolulu Zoo in Hawaii. OFI built his magnificent enclosure which covers a good part of an acre.
Orangutan Foundation International (OFI) was established to help save orangutan populations from extinction in the wild, to protect orangutan habitat, tropical rainforest, and to rehabilitate and release wild-born ex-captive orangutans back to the wild. In addition, OFI works to educate people, whether school children, teachers or the “person on the street” in Indonesia, Malaysia, Canada, United States, UK, Australia, Lithuania and elsewhere, about orangutans and their tropical rainforest home. OFI helps orangutans where ever they might be in captivity or in the wild. OFI also promotes and conducts research on orangutan behavior and ecology. The wild orangutan research program at Camp Leakey is the longest wild orangutan study ever undertaken and has been called “monumental” by annomynous reviewers. OFI also rescued and owns Rusti, a captive-born “hybrid” adult male orangutan, who is now on permanent loan to the Honolulu Zoo in Hawaii.
OFI has partnered with World Education as well as other groups that are working to counter the primary threats to orangutan survival throughout Indonesia. The top five priority issues OFI works on in Indonesia, particularly Kalimantan, include:
2. Increasing sustainable economic alternatives for communities surrounding critical orangutan habitat
3. Assuring sustained funding for long-term in-situ orangutan research vital for effective conservation efforts
4. Educating the local public, politicians, and government agencies about the threat of palm oil and helping palm oil and pulp and paper companies establish zero tolerance policies on the killing, harming, and capturing of endangered species, especially orangutans, by training their managers and staff
5. Releasing ex-captive orangutans into suitable, protected habitat so that they return to the wild.
The Orangutan Foundation International Board of Directors consists of a diverse group of people drawn from many walks of life representing five different nationalities who are joined together in a passionate commitment to orangutans and the tropical rain forests that sustain them. Most board members have visited OFI’s facilities in Borneo. A few board members have visited multiple times.