The driving force behind Sumatra Wildlife Center is Femke den Haas. 15 years ago the animal activist left for Indonesia to help with the care of orangutans in the jungle.
She learned the Indonesian language and set up the Jakarta Animal Aid Network (JAAN Foundation) together with Karin Franken and Natalie Stewart. By doing this, they improved animal welfare in Indonesia and operated in a network with all existing animal rescue centers, organizations and government institutions. Because the recent focus has been more on stopping the trade in wild animals, the name of the foundation was changed into Wildlife Watchdogs.
The Wildlife division started small, but is now a fully-fledged body with 60 paid employees: only local residents. We believe that work and awareness must come primarily from the Indonesians. We provide paid work and raise awareness. That also works the other way around, we have to get the locals behind us. In the coming years, everyone in southern Indonesia must oppose the trade in wild animals. Our staff lives near the Sumatra Wildlife Center and therefore near the main smuggling route. The control is thus to grow even bigger and the tamtam goes fast. The knowledge of the local population helps us to stop smugglers.
In addition to shelter, we are increasingly focusing on the origin of the animal suffering: the trade in wild animals. Stopping and prosecuting smugglers is a first important step in stopping illegal animal trade. By tackling the problem at the source, we hope that animals will no longer be available on the market in the future. We do this by lobbying for stricter penalties and laws with petitions and frequent conversations with the national police, with whom we have a good relationship.
Over the past 15 years we have created a large network of partners, foundations and (local) governments. For example, we often work together and were taken seriously when we sent letters to the government every week to ban dance monkeys. We succeeded, as dance monkeys have been banned in Jakarta since the end of 2013 and in West Java since 2016.
The network also consists of numerous partners that are needed to rehabilitate every animal we encounter, whether it’s cockatoos, bears or cassowaries. Sumatra Wildlife Center is strong in motivated manpower, but not financially sufficient to allow all animals to rehabilitate themselves. Many funds and projects with which our foundation cooperates also focus on Rehabilitating wildlife.
Organization :Stichting JAAN Nederland
City: Den Haag
Stichting JAAN Nederland is registered at the Chamber of Commerce in The Hague (CoC nr. 27267128) and recognized by the Minister of Finance as a Public Benefit Organisation (ANBI no. 814973140).