Classroom and Communities
Classrooms and Communities
The Talarak education team are split between the rural communities, particularly around the Bayawan Nature Reserve, and the schools/cities of Negros. Communicating conservation education about the challenges (and solutions) for Negros wildlife is an ever important task. People are the primary threats to the wild environments and species in Negros, but they are also the biggest allys and assets to enacting conservation initiatives. Our education team, with the help of international and local mentors, partner organisations and government associations, are working hard to change negative perceptions about wildlife into conservation positive outlooks.
Around the Bayawan Nature Reserve our outreach and education team is working to build strong relationships within the communities in the area. Fostering interest in wildlife preservation by providing the communities with economy (through purchasing goods and crops or hiring for the reserve) and looking to develop other non-economic incentives for supporting conservation activities, such as; livelihood schemes, education materials, water security and others. This engagement, and the hiring team members from within these communities, has meant a great reception for the reserve.
Many people in the community are happy and eager to tell us about the introduced wildlife, taking photos when they can or alerting us to one of the animals outside the reserve. But they are also very open about why harvesting or poaching takes place and questioning how they can reduce these activities for the benefit of the environment, whilst still seeing their basic needs met. This honesty and openness is important for progressing with developing true conservation ideals within a community, and understand how we can support these communities best.
Outside the rural communities we are also trying to provide education to the broader public about the wildlife of Negros and the activities of Talarak. This can take the form of radio interviews, hosting or participating large events, visiting schools, and welcoming people to our captive conservation center Negros Forest Park. With this as a base for education in Negros Occidental we have been able to use ambassador animals to provide educational seminars to many schools, but also provide that same educational impact to the thousands of visitors who come to the park each week. Our dedicated education staff can provide guided tours of the park but also engage visitors with our ambassador animals that allow you to see up-close those species who are threatened in the wilds of Negros.