Project updates – how the teams are getting on

1st April 2015


As we start phase 3 it’s time to find out the progress of the Alpha teams and the work they have been completing over the past few weeks and what they will be doing over this final phase.

Alpha 1 – Kampung Tiku; Community Learning Centre build

The Alpha 1 team have been working hard in the village of Kampung Tika building a community learning centre (CLC). Once built, this will also be used as a kindergarten for the children of the village who currently have to walk 90 minutes to get to their nearest school.  After carrying heavy gravel to the project site, a 20-30 minute walk up winding hills, the phase 2 team successfully completed cementing the floor of the CLC.  The phase 3 team will be putting the finishing touches to the roof which will be built to allow maximum air to flow through the structure.  The interior of the ceiling will be made from traditional methods of weaved bamboo which the Alpha teams will learn how to construct along with help from the local community. 

Alpha 2 – Kampung Soniton Ulu; Gravity fed water system and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene programme.

Alpha 2 have been busy installing and repairing the existing gravity fed water system which will supply the village with a reliable and sustainable source of water. They have been smashing through their targets, and have already completed the water system connecting houses with pipes and taps. This week they have been concentrating on building new toilets, with the construction of the fourth toilet now complete. They have also been conducting community workshops on good health and hygiene practices as part of the Water Sanitation and Hygiene programme.  During phase 3 they will start work installing another Gravity Fed Water System in a small hamlet close to Soniton Ulu.

Alpha 3 – Maliau Basin; Trail build and maintenance.

The team in Alpha 3 have now completed the much needed trail in Maliau Basin, allowing greater access to this Class One protected rainforest to scientists, researches and tourists.  They have also been helping to prepare bridges in the area. This week they welcomed a scientist into camp who spoke to them about his work currently being undertaken in Maliau Basin. His project is looking at the effect of logging on the growth rate of new seedlings in the area and was a great chance for the venturers to see how their work can help scientists on the ground gain more access and insight into this remarkable area. 

Alpha 4 – Danum Valley; Construction of a guard hut and wildlife observation surveys

Alpha 4 have made great progress on the construction of the guard hut in Danum Valley. They have completed the flooring and have helped the local carpenter to finish the structure and roofing ready for the next alpha group. They have also been working alongside project partner INFAPRO in their work by conducting a tree census and tree measuring. INFAPRO are aiming to rehabilitate 25,000 hectares of logged-over rainforest in Sabah over 25 years. The team has also conducted night-time wildlife observations where they spotted mouse deer, civet cats and pygmy elephants.  The phase 3 team will aim for completion of the guard hut and towards the end of the phase will undertake a 2 day trek into Danum Valley, visiting Purut camp and Purut waterall along the way.

Alpha 5 – Imbak Canyon; building a suspension bridge

The suspension bridge build is progressing well with Alpha 5 successfully managing to raise one end of the suspension bridge.  They have been digging holes and carrying rocks to allow the poles to have solid foundations in which to sit. The phase 3 team will be building on the work of the previous team laying the foundations for a project Raleigh groups will continue over coming expeditions.  Once finished, the bridge will allow greater access to deeper parts of the forest for researchers and scientists, especially during the rainy season.  Project partner Yayasan Sabah and Imbak Canyon Conservation Area (ICCA) rangers are keen to extend access to the limited trail and bridge network to make further studies possible.

Alpha 6 – trek / dive

Alpha 6 are currently trekking through the jungles of Long Pasia. With the help of their expert guides, the team has been learning all the necessary skills to live in the jungle, including cooking on open fires with new jungle treats.  They have successfully completed 7km-10km daily and at the end of their trek they will have the opportunity to stay in a homestay in Long Pasia. This is an amazing chance to live with a family and experience the culture and way of life of the people in this rural community in Sabah. Alpha 6 will head to Mamutik Island to complete their PADI qualifications on Friday 10th April.

Alpha 7 – dive / trek

Alpha 7, are currently on Mamutik Island where they have been learning new skills and will come away with an Open Water PADI Dive Certificate.  They have also had the opportunity to help with the beach and underwater clean ups as well as taking part in a coral planting project. They will be heading to Long Pasia on Friday 3rd April.