10 No 8
Where it all starts
More volunteer quotes
The Volunteers' Song
A Special Visit by Champion of the Earth, Dr Tewolde Egziabher
Allow me to introduce myself...
back, as early as 1990, Sungei Buloh already had volunteers who helped
with our bird ringing programme. By 1992, a few volunteers came to help
in conducting guided walks on an ad-hoc basis.
In the earlier years of the 90s, few people knew about the existence of
Sungei Buloh, and the urgent need to create more awareness.
To do that, we knew we would need volunteers. In early 1993, before the
official opening of Sungei Buloh Nature Park on 6 December 1993, a “Volunteer
Guide Network” was set up. Volunteer preview sessions were conducted for
people who were keen to volunteer at Sungei Buloh. Volunteer Guide Training
Workshops, thereafter, were conducted for them.
In 1996, a formal Volunteer Programme was put in place to train and involve
the volunteers to help in our public and research programmes in view of
the need to have more volunteers to put forth more programmes for the
public and to conduct more research programmes. The Volunteer Programme
actively garnered community involvement. We advertised our Volunteer
Programme through a radio station on FM 92.4 to recruit more people. Soon,
we had people signing up to be volunteers after hearing the publicity,
while some others heard about this from their friends. Most people signed
up to be a volunteer for the same reasons – they know the need to create
awareness on Sungei Buloh, they have a passion for nature, an eagerness
to share their knowledge with others and they know the importance of conserving
this precious piece of land.
By the late 90s, we had a small but dedicated group of core volunteers,
and a number of them have stayed on with us till today . We held our first
Volunteer Recognition Event in 1996 and in the same year, we organized
our first volunteer outing cum training.
Sungei Buloh’s volunteer group grew as the years went by. People from
all walks of life continued to join our volunteer programme with the same
vision as those who had joined us in the earlier days. Through the years,
our volunteers have been more involved in other activities, programmes
and trainings organized by the Reserve. We have also progressed to letting
our experienced volunteer train the new volunteers-to-be.
This year, Sungei Buloh celebrates the Volunteer Programme’s 10th Anniversary,
since it was made official in 1996. Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve (SBWR),
to this day, is fortunate to have a group of dedicated and committed volunteers,
who have a keen heart for SBWR and for nature. We appreciate all the work
that the volunteers have done tirelessly, and their efforts and time.
We look forward to see the volunteer group grow together with us, and
always staying together as one happy “Sungei Buloh family”!