My Name is Sydney four years ago i gave up my property development company and have returned to Sir Lanka. In hearing from my local village that the UNISCO Protected rainforest of Sinharaja is being exploited by a leading Hotel chain, Major tea plantations and Poachers, hunting the protected animals of the area.
On hearing this shocking news i had no choice but to return to my home country and take these matters into my own hands.
My first action was to create a Facebook page to create this first wave of awareness letting this become public, i quickly gained 6000 plus followers.
With having this issue on social media and made public my next move was to approach the government officials.
After visiting the National forest Department and local M.Ps who gave general interest into the preservation of the rainforest it was still clear to me that i was no match for the bribes and corruption of these major company’s and the weakness of the Sir Lankan Government.
With no faith in my fellow countrymen i contacted major Environmental protection agency’s via email pleading my case and
not looking for funding in anyway, only to get more awareness to trigger a response from the Sir Lankan Government.
These agency’s response was that they were to busy with other campaigns and that i should refer back to my own local Authorities.
As i knew already my own local Authorities were in the pocket of the major hotel chains and i was on my own.
With no help from any large outside parties my only option was to create my own business to support my campaign, i currently have three
guesthouse’s that have been supporting my cause. This has been a huge help in promoting awareness through foreign visitors.
Some of these guest’s have even sent care package’s of toys and other items for my school visits.
The money generated from this venture has enabled me to fund my campaign, printing leaflets and do school visits to raise
awareness to the younger generation.
Although my endeavour is tough and slow in any real results this is my path and passion, i will continue to fight against these people, foreign or local as
this rainforest and many others i believe are more important than profit and commercialisation.
I am looking for people to help me running our tourist resort and organic farm in the beautiful southern hill country in Deniyaya and beach front guest house in Polhena, Matara, Sri Lanka.
It's a place for different workshops to be run, we have a bakery included in the resort where many local people shop and are just about to start a small organic farm in the backyard. we have 6 local workers working with us.
We are looking forward to meeting interesting people and to learning a variety of things such as organic farming, sustainable building, forest conservation, butterfly farming, water conservation, bakery, eco-resort, advertising the place through the internet etc.
We are looking for people who are willing to take ownership of the tasks to fulfill and having a lot of freedom to organise themselves accordingly.
Furthermore, we are starting a campaign to save the Rainforest (see information below) through awareness-raising as a first step. Therefore we are especially looking for people who would like to take part in that, e.g. go to schools and talk to the kids about the importance of the topic, create games to get them involved...
Apart from that, there will be plenty of time to explore the surroundings by bike or on foot. There are plenty of waterfalls nearby to swim in, nature, rice paddies and tea plantations to hike through and of course the Rainforest National Park - a paradise for nature lovers!
Your help needed
The rainforest in Sri Lanka is threatened.
This is a World Heritage Site, although protected by Unesco. Still it is getting smaller every year and in 20 years many animal species will get extinct if the cutting of trees for tea will continue in this pace.
I are also looking for people to help me run a guest house and hostel on the south coast in Polhena, Matara.
Tasks would include cleaning, serving guests, gardening etc. we have one local woker helping us.
We are hoping to start a turtle and coral conservation project, so anyone with interest in this field would be a big help.
If you want to stay one week,1 month,3 months,or more,You are More than welcome and your help will be greatly appreciated!!
Please look at my profile and read what i am doing now. tell the truth we are making the funds for the proejct . for that i am running the guest houses . so farwhat i was doing and just writing emaill and using social media to make awareness.. hope i will have enough fund do do much work .protcting the rainforest.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help with Eco Projects
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
farming.local culture. cooking.local area.
We need help for a tourist resort. gardening, internet.running a guest house. working on internet campaining abut the rainforest. painting. cleaning.teaching children.Experience is a plus.
Please note that at the moment we are looking for people who can help us for a minimum of 2 weeks, the longer the better.
Own room or possibly sharing with one other volunteer .
Sinharaja Forest Reserve is a nearby national park and a biodiversity hotspot in Sri Lanka. It is of international significance and has been designated a Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
The hilly virgin rainforest, part of the Sri Lanka lowland rain forests ecoregion, was saved from the worst of commercial logging by its inaccessibility, and was designated a World Biosphere Reserve in 1978 and a World Heritage Site in 1988. The reserve's name translates as Kingdom of the Lion.
The reserve is only 21 km (13 mi) from east to west, and a maximum of 7 km (4.3 mi) from north to south, but it is a treasure trove of endemic species, including trees, insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals.
Because of the dense vegetation, wildlife is not as easily seen as at dry-zone national parks such as Yala. There are about 3 elephants and the 15 or so leopards are rarely seen. The most common larger mammal is the endemic Purple-faced Langur.
An interesting phenomenon is that birds tend to move in mixed feeding flocks, invariably led by the fearless Greater Racket-tailed Drongo and the noisy Orange-billed Babbler. Of Sri Lanka's 26 endemic birds, the 20 rainforest species all occur here, including the elusive Red-faced Malkoha, Green-billed Coucal and Sri Lanka Blue Magpie.
Reptiles include the endemic Green pit viper and Hump-nosed vipers, and there are a large variety of amphibians, especially tree frogs. Invertebrates include the endemic Common Birdwing butterfly and the inevitable leeches.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
5 hours, 5days a week