Enter as a guest ...

Be respectful to your host...

... and leave the place either the same or better than it was before.

Conscious travel is often described as being ‘deep’ travel – getting under the skin of a place. It sits alongside terms such as eco-travel and responsible tourism.

In simple terms, it is entering as a guest, being respectful of your hosts, leaving the place either the same or better than it was before and learning from each other.


Ransel Buku is an educational project that brings environmental education through books, reading and providing educational games to children in two villages. One village is on the Rungan River (Petuk Katimpun) and the other village is on the Kahayan (Bukit Rawi). 500 children directly benefit NOW from this program. Ransel Buku is supported by village elders, parents, fellow volunteers, professional photographer David Metcalf, donors and others who believe that it is the responsibility of everybody to support access to education for better future. Two teachers are employed full-time and we wish to hire more. Volunteer teachers currently required.

Short Term goal
Expanding health and environmental classes twice a week in each village. Providing teacher training, increasing the graduation number of village teenagers from Senior High School. Promoting healthy food choices by building organic farming plots and sustainable farming methods.

Long term goal
Spreading the program to more villages, opening a floating library, developing learning centers in each village, encouraging sustainable economic alternatives.

Ransel Buku has been working for almost 3 years now in the river-side villages in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo, to help facilitate the children from these poor communities to get access to books.



Borneo’s forests and culture is fast disappearing. One way to raise awareness is through Cultural expression and Dance and communicating to people the Importance of developing this art form.

Based in Palangkaraya, Central Kalimantan, this dance academy promotes traditional Dayak dancing. Local dancer and teacher, Ibu Siti Habibah, runs the academy. Siti provides traditional dance and music instruction to young Dayak children. Plans are to expand this program to the more remote villages as a way for the children to express their culture and keep the Dayak dance tradition alive.

As the fund grows, it will provide a means for Dayak dancers to travel overseas and introduce their dance and cultural beliefs to an international audience.

Future Plans
  • Perform in Australia and New Zealand in 2016
  • Collaborate and dance with Native Americans in USA 2016
  • Dance and music academy centre to be built in Palangkaraya
  • Financial support to perform overseas and in Indonesia
  • Future dance collaboration opportunities in Bali with Indigenous
  • Cultures from Indonesia and abroad.
  • Ongoing programs to record Dayak music & dance
  • Provide dance teaching to children in remote villages in Central Kalimantan
Financial needs:
  • Funding needed to train more teachers and larger dance facility needed
  • Siti started her Studio by saving for many months to raise the $ 500 required to pay for the rent on the Studio for the next 12 months.
  • Instruments for background music
  • Dance Uniforms (handmade)
  • Dayak accessories to demonstrate and express their culture.

To learn more about this project, please visit Spirit of The Hornbill website at spiritofthehornbill.com



Ranu Welum is a group of young Dayak consisting of more than 50 people.

At first we focus on film and video making aim to voice the voices of Dayak people in Kalimantan. Films and short videos we aim to create self-discovering and self-learning for the Dayak. Working together with NGOs and youth communities in Palangkaraya, we hold events and workshops to train young people how to use media as a tool to express the aspirations, culture and life of the Dayak in Kalimantan.

Last year, we joined anti-haze movement as an act to help people during forest fire and haze. We cooked for local firefighters who work 24 hours every day to extinguish the fire in the forest. We also went to villages in Central Kalimantan to distribute masks, medicine and nutrition to people who are unable to afford it. We also travelled on motorbikes, in the middle of dense smog to distribute masks to the villagers.

Working together with local doctors and health workers we conducted health service and medical check-up to the villagers, educate them about the haze and tell them how to keep their health during the haze.

There is a village, Gunung Karasik, it is about 8 hour from Palangkaraya. This village is very isolated, the villagers did not receive any help during the haze. Most villagers only eat once a day. We went there and distributed supplies, nutrition, conducted medical check up and health service. We realize there are so many people who desperately need help.

More info about this project: click ranuwelum.org

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