Emma and I have been presenting to kids and grownups about orangutans in order to raise money and awareness for them. We’ve spoken to over 200 kids in India so far. Presenting is really tiring. People are watching you all day and it is pretty uncomfortable. But I keep on going because I know that I am doing it for the orangutans.
Orangutans are in danger. Their habitat is being cut down to make room for palm oil plantations. Palm oil is in almost all prepared foods like crackers, candies, ice cream and soaps. Palm oil kernels are crushed to release oil. Processing this oil is also very bad for the environment. It is polluting the water in the area. Also palm trees can’t hold soil as well as the forest so silt is washed downriver in to the ocean—silt is destroying the coral reefs in the area. The palm plantations are like a green desert. No animals are allowed to live there because they may harm the crop so farmers kill them. Only rats thrive here. Orangutans are endangered species and they will be gone in five years unless they get help.
Yesterday we went to NSS Hill Spring International School Mumbai and it was really amazing. We did four presentations for students in grades 4-11. The kids were all really interested in community service. The school has a program to help kids give back to the environment and their community. It was really great to talk with kids who do something to make a difference. We met an enthusiastic teacher Baktavar Elavia who I hope will help us set up an India connection to work on Emma’s Jungle Heroes project. It will take many more people beyond Emma and I to help save the orangutans.