Two girls from SHELTER 4, Lee* and Kas*, had the privilege of going on an elephant expedition in Endau-Rompin, Johor and Lanchang, Pahang from June 6 – 10. Tan Ju Eng of The Star, was instrumental in helping SHELTER obtain two scholarships for them.
Lee and Kas, along with 22 other youths, were part of the expedition specifically aimed at teaching your people about elephants. The first three days were spent in Endau – Rompin, where the youths were taught about elephants – the conflicts between elephants and human beings, their habitat, the kinds of food they eat and how to recognize their tracks. They were also taken on excursions to look for elephant tracks and possibly, see elephants in the wild.
“We didn’t get to see any elephants, but I really learned a lot about them. One interesting thing I learned was that elephants like eating durians, and will eat the whole fruit!” said Kas.
In addition to learning about elephants, the young people also went trekking in the jungle and camping by Tasik Air Biru.
“I liked jungled-trekking and camping. All the people were friendly so I had a very good time. I also got to meet new people and make friends,” said Lee.
After their stay in Endau-Rompin, the group was then taken to an elephant sanctuary in Lanchang. There, they got up close and personal to three baby elephants that had been abandoned by their mothers. Activities in the sanctuary included feeding the elephants and cleaning up their dung!
Kas admits that she was apprehensive about the trip initially. “At first, I didn’t want to go because I was scared of mosquitoes and leeches. But one of the SHELTER 4 staff kept on telling me that I should go because it was a chance of a lifetime. I’m very glad I followed her advice because I enjoyed myself a lot,” she asid.
Now both girls would like to go back to Endau-Rompin one day. They are very grateful to The Star for making this experience possible for them.
*Names have been changed to protect their identity