June’s Answer

Which resort would you stay at if you wanted to see orangutans and Bornean sun bears being rehabilitated for their release back into the wild?

D. Sepilok Nature Resort

The river-front Sepilok Nature Resort combines rich traditional style with contemporary luxury and is a haven for nature lovers. The Resort has 23 comfortable, individual air conditioned timber chalets featuring a private balcony with views over the river or jungle.

At the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre you are able to enter the jungle on a guided basis to observe the feeding of the orangutans under rehabilitation. Adjacent to the world’s first Orangutan Sanctuary is the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre where you can observe the world’s smallest bear. The orangutans and sun bears are either orphaned due to habitat loss, injury or hunting or rescued from captivity.

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May’s Answer

How many permits are allocated per day for visitors including divers to visit Sipadan Island?

C. 120

Sipadan Island is world renowned as one of the best dive destinations in the world. It has been officially declared a part of an immense Marine Protected Area. From 1 January 2005, no overnight accommodation is available on the island and it is only accessible during the day between 8am and 3pm to divers and day trippers. The closest dive resorts are on Kapalai and Mabul islands.

Sipadan Entry Permit Approval

Anyone planning to visit Sipadan Island now requires an approved entry permit issued by Sabah Parks, a government agency of Sabah Government. The total daily entry quota is 120 permits per day. This initiative has been made by the Malaysian Government in an attempt to minimise the stress to the reefs and marine life at Sipadan Island. Unfortunately, this also means that diving at Sipadan is no longer guaranteed. You should plan for at least a 4-5 night stay in the area to ensure a minimum of 1 day diving at Sipadan Island. The announcement of the Sipadan Entry Permit Approval list is only available 1-3 days before the actual diving date and payment for the permit/s is made locally.

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Building Supplies for Mele’s Schools

This will be the last update for the Vanuatu Dive Cyclone Appeal for Mele Village. We thank everyone from the community for choosing to donate to this cause  and we are so very happy that we had this opportunity to assist Mele Village with their recovery after Cyclone Pam. Even though it has been over a year since the cyclone passed through Vanuatu, the recovery efforts are ongoing. Work continues to be done to rebuild the villages, infrastructure and commercial buildings.

Taken in January 2016 - bricks were still holding down roofs in the village
Taken in January 2016 – bricks were still holding down roofs in the village

The last installment of donations has now been split between the two schools in the area. Back in January the Mele – Maat English speaking school purchased 650 concrete blocks with their portion of the donations whilst in March the French speaking Suango School used their portion of the donations for a variety of building materials such as timber and cement to assist with the rebuild of their classrooms.

Donation for the Mele-Maat school being accepted by school principal, Charlie Roy
Donation for the Mele-Maat school being accepted by school principal, Charlie Roy
Principal Willie from the French speaking school accepting his portion of the donations
Principal Willie from the French speaking school accepting their portion of the donations

A residual amount of donations has also been put towards parts to rectify leaks in the village water supply.

Apart from all your generous donations, this appeal would not have been possible without the assistance and hard work of the fantastic management and team at Hideaway Island Resort who kindly assisted us with allocation of the funds as most required and procuring all the necessary goods. Plus the sponsorship of prizes from Scubapro Australia, Lissenung Island Resort, Hideaway Island Resort and Dive Adventures.

Thank you again for making this appeal such a success!

We’d also like to express our well wishes for all the other nations who have suffered recently in the wake of mother nature’s destructive path.

Dive Adventures over and out.