PROFAUNA West Java Spurred Children’s Creativity through Primate Education

There was an unusual sight at the Independent Learning Center of Taboo Community, Bandung, West Java, Indonesia last Sunday (25/1/2015). 24 children were eagerly talking and cheering about primates when PROFAUNA West Java representatives visited the center. It began with an open discussion about animals, particularly primates, when some comments were raised and the children started sharing their personal experiences with primates. The gathering became even more merrier when PROFAUNA's activists told Sunda folktales where primates are involved.

"I've hear the stories of Lutung Kasarung and Ciung Wanara," said Kania, a 6th grader who regularly comes to the center, while pointing out at posters brought by PROFAUNA.

Arul, a 1st grader added, "I love the story of Sakadang Monyet dan Sakadang Kuya (A monkey and a tortoise), I read it once at school."

The discussion went on. When Nadya, a supporter of PROFAUNA, asked the children where the primates should live, different answers. At the end of the discussion, finally everybody agreed that the forest is the best home for animals, including the primates.

"But I once saw a monkey being kept at a house of my aunt's friend. It lived in a cage outside the house," told Hana (7-years old).

"I see monkey often, in street shows (masked monkey). There are men carrying monkeys around in this village too. I used to gave them food and money," said Silvia (10-years old).

Her statement was responded by PROFAUNA's supporters by explaining to the children that monkey show is one example of animal cruelty. After that Adam, PROFAUNA's supporter, put on his graphic art work, entitled "Stop Exploiting the Long-tailed Macaque".

"In the process of making this work, I learned about how the monkeys are trained. Turned out that there are so much cruel treatment given by the trainers. The poor monkeys were captured from the wild , then forced to stand upright with chains on their necks and legs. Often times they are not given any food, to make them submit," told Adam.

The children were so encaptured by Adam's story and artwork. They agreed to take part in PROFAUNA's mission to educate the public on how they should treat primates. They support the "Do Not Buy Primates" movement, the theme for this year's Indonesian Primate Day. They expressed their support by painting a lot of stuff related to primates. In 1,5 hours, 24 paintings were displayed at the center, and then the chidlren took photos with their paintings, and this becomes the peak of Indonesian Primate Day celebration in Bandung. Creative works for the primates!

© 2003 - ProFauna Indonesia

ProFauna Indonesia is an Indonesian society for the protection of
wild animals and their habitats