In the Sabah region of Malaysian Borneo, our work focuses on providing access to safe water and sanitation, building resilient communities, and contributing to biodiversity conservation, protection and research.
Following extensive research and analysis, the difficult but necessary decision has been taken to end our operations in Borneo in October 2018. This decision has been guided by the fact that Malaysia is a high Human Development Index (HDI) country – the highest of any of the countries we currently work in. In our strategy for 2017-2020, we made a commitment to support young people in low and medium HDI countries to drive sustainable development in their countries, and increase our impact and contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
We are excited about the future for young people in Malaysia. We will be working closely with our national societies and partners to continue to support young people there and build on the successes already achieved in the region at a local level. We have two excellent alumni societies in Malaysia; Raleigh Kuala Lumpur (Raleigh KL) and Raleigh Sabah. These societies offer a platform for young people to design, deliver and evaluate their own projects that contribute to the achievement of the SDGs. The societies will also recruit young Malaysians to take part in Raleigh Expeditions in other countries.
Our long history and strong alumni societies mean our work in Malaysia has a firm foundation to build our legacy. We delivered our first Expedition in Borneo 30 years ago and we have a lot to be proud of. Volunteers, staff, partners, societies and communities have all contributed to some incredible achievements. These include, for example, building the resilience of kampungs through community learning centres, kindergartens and rural electrical workshops; improving access to water and sanitation in rural areas; promoting and supporting Sabah’s conservation efforts through environmental projects in protected forests; and inspiring generations of young people from Malaysia and around the world through engaging in our expeditions and their projects. We know that through our dedicated alumni societies, our legacy will live on.