Yayasan Orangutan Sumatera Lestari – Orangutan Information Centre (YOSL-OIC) is dedicated to conserve the last 14,600 endemic, critically endangered Sumatran orangutan (<em>Pongo abelii</em>) and their forest homes. OIC is a local NGO based in Medan, North Sumatra province, and staffed by Indonesian university graduates, believing that Sumatran people are best suited to have an impact in helping to save Sumatran biodiversity. In order to succeed in its conservation efforts, OIC acknowledge that it is important to work with local people towards the preservation and regrowth of their forest habitat as well as to promote orangutans as global conservation ambassadors for the Sumatran rainforest ecosystem.
Firstly founded in 2001 by Panut Hadisiswoyo with the assistance of the Sumatran Orangutan Society (SOS), OIC and SOS have worked closely togethersince then. Side by side as partner organisations, SOS continues to support us in programme development and management, fundraising, and project monitoring.
The focus of OIC and SOS is to work in the front line to save the lives of Sumatran orangutans and sustain their survival by working with local communities living alongside orangutan habitat. Together with local communities, OIC – SOS have planted more than 1,5 million trees to restore degraded orangutan habitat in the Gunung Leuser National Park (GLNP), a part of the broader Leuser Ecosystem, the last place on Earth where Sumatran orangutans, tigers, elephants and rhinos still roam freely.The Gunung Leuser National Park belongs to the Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra, declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004. Furthermore, OIC and SOS are also working on the ground to address the problem of human wildlife conflicts in agricultural landscapes adjacent to the Gunung Leuser National Park (GLNP) by establishing so far 2 teams of Human Orangutan Conflict Response Unit (HOCRU). Since 2012, HOCRU teams have been able to rescue and save 124 orangutans from life threatening situations. In addition, OIC and SOS also collaborate with GLNP authority and local community to conduct monthlycommunity patrols inside the park.
Conscious that environment conservation and community sustainable development need to go hand in hand, the two organisations also work to improve local community livelyhoods through the implementaton of sustainable and organicfarming practices. At the same time, the teams are raising community and public awareness about the threats to and conservation strategies for the Sumatran orangutans through community education and global communication. In order to implement each project, OIC – SOS collaborate with other local and international NGOs, local and national government and private sector sharing similar goals.