Benteng Dewa

May 2009

Conservation benefit: Support of approximately 14,826 acres of no-take forest reserve

Community benefit: Community health clinic to help children

Benteng Dewa, located on the southwest coast of Flores Island in Indonesia, was formally established in 2004 and has a population of 1,580 people in 300 households. The villagers are almost exclusively farmers, tending to rice, corn, sweet potatoes, and coconut. The spirit of community volunteer work and traditional law is strong in this village. Bentang Dewa is one of 27 villages located around the 63,738-acre Mbeliling Forest. The village is about a 30-minute drive from the nearest town and is separated by a river located about 1.8 miles from the village, which is impassable by vehicle. Sometimes the villagers cannot access medical care because of this obstacle. Furthermore, malaria is common, and health care for children and pregnant women is severely lacking. The village places health improvement as its highest priority, but a request to the government for medical facilities has been turned down.

Seacology will fund a community health clinic in support of 14,826 acres of forest (including about 618 acres of savannah) as a strict no-take zone for a minimum of 10 years. Birdlife Indonesia is currently drafting a Nature Protection agreement with the involvement of all 27 villages around the Mbeliling Forest in their local dialect that will encompass rules and sanctions of the protected forest.

Full or partial funding for this project provided by

and Farallon Islands Foundation.

Project Updates
June 2010
Arnaz reports that the health clinic was completed and handed over to the government of West Manggarai regency on January 17, 2010. On this occasion the Head of Public Health confirmed that they...
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November 2009
Field representative Arnaz Mehta reports that construction on the health clinic to this point has included building the brick walls with concrete reinforcements, door and window frame...
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