Kebun Keluarga (Kitchen Gardens) is one of ASRI's conservation programs, focusing on alternative livelihood development. This program works with women who live around Gunung Palung National Park, teaching them how to cultivate the small plots of land they manage next to their homes.

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This past February I had my first opportunity to visit our partner ASRI and colleagues. I’d like to tell you about one new and particularly innovative initiative I saw called the Garden to Forest program. It’s illustrative of how we approach the conjoined challenges of human development and conservation of our natural world.

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Last August, when I visited ASRI for the first time, I had the opportunity to spend a day with the Harapan Baru (meaning “New Hope”) farmers group. They taught me how to make a batch of liquid fertilizer, using some local ingredients that though readily available in Borneo, many of us in the West have never heard of.

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