The Orangutan Caring Scholarship (OCS) is a collaborative program of the Orang Utan Republik Foundation (OURF) and three Indonesian implementing organizations: Yayasan Orangutan Sumatra Lestari-Orangutan Information Center or OIC on Sumatra, Yayasan Palung (YP) in West Kalimantan (Indonesian Borneo) and Borneo Nature Foundation (BNF) in Central Kalimantan.
The purpose of the program is to award tuition funding to talented and needy Indonesian students on a competitive basis enabling them to attend university in the fields of Forestry, Biology and Veterinary Science. In addition to being able to attend university, scholarship recipients develop an understanding of the plight of the orangutan from the perspective of the nongovernmental organization. They graduate as advocates of orangutan conservation when entering the private, nonprofit or government workforce. The collaboration between OURF, OIC, YP, and BNF has allowed this program to expand since its first award in 2006. OURF raises and provides the funding and OIC, YP, and BNF administers the actual competition via outreach to schools, evaluates submitted proposals, oversees the selection process, and manages funds to the recipients.
The OCS is open to Indonesian students in North Sumatra, Aceh & West and Central Kalimantan seeking tuition funds for Forestry, Biology, or Veterinary School. One of the requirements of the applicant is to make an effective presentation to a review committee about their research plans. Another is to provide periodic updates to OURF. In addition, recipients are expected to work with the local NGOs in learning about the orangutan and its plight, and in helping present the information to students in local schools.