Saturday, March 26, 2011

Don't Say it's Hopeless!

Blog post by Tina Winterlik © 2011

Check out the Incredibly Awesome Video, so Powerful, so Much Valuable Info. Don't Say it's Hopeless, We have the solutions, we just need to COLLECTIVELY apply them. By piecing together a complex ecological puzzle, biologist Willie Smits has found a way to re-grow clearcut rainforest in Borneo, saving local orangutans -- and creating a thrilling blueprint for restoring fragile ecosystems.

TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Featured speakers have included Al Gore on climate change, Philippe Starck on design, Jill Bolte Taylor on observing her own stroke, Nicholas Negroponte on One Laptop per Child, Jane Goodall on chimpanzees, Bill Gates on malaria and mosquitoes and "Lost" producer JJ Abrams on the allure of mystery. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design, and TEDTalks cover these topics as well as science, business, development and the arts. Watch the Top 10 TEDTalks on, at

Wil Smiths

Willie Smits (born February 22, 1957, in Weurt, Gelderland, the Netherlands) is a trained forester, a microbiologist, conservationist, animal rights activist and social entrepreneur. He has lived in Borneo since 1985 and is an Indonesian citizen.
While working as a forest researcher in East Kalimantan, Indonesia in 1989, Smits encountered a baby orangutan in a cage in a market, and later returned to find it abandoned on a rubbish heap. This was a turning-point in his career: taking the orangutan home, he nurtured it back to health.

He was soon given other orangutans to look after, and the work of rescuing, rehabilitating and releasing orangutans into the wild developed into what was to become the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation.

For over twenty years Smits has worked for the survival of this threatened species of ape, during which time his work has also broadened out into the related areas of generating sustainable farming, reforestation and remote monitoring of forests.

He travels widely, raising awareness of the issues surrounding deforestation in Borneo and the plight of the orangutan, also showing how it has been possible on a relatively small scale to reverse the great damage that is being done to the orangutan and its environment.

He became a senior advisor to the Ministry of Forests in Indonesia and has been knighted in the Netherlands.

Make a Film- Make A Difference

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