The Riau Expo was held at the SKA Co-Ex this year, and celebrated the cultural, economic and ecological dynamics of Pelalawan.
The exhibition booth of Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper (RAPP), a company that forms part of the Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Limited (APRIL) group, showcased a variety of projects they are involved in. The projects RAPP had decided to bring to focus at the Expo this year included the community empowerment programmes (CD), Riau Ecosystem Restoration programme (RER) and the Land and Forest Prevention programme.
The colourful batik work created by wives and mothers who have taken part in the batik courses provided by Batik House Mainstay assisted Community Development, attracted many visitors. With batik being an iconic part of Pelalawan bono, every effort was made to promote the Pelalawan culture. As well as the various handcrafted items such as batik cloth bags and lengths of batik cloth for sale, visitors could learn the basics of creating batik from expert artists of RAPP’s CD programme, Rumah Batik Andalan.
Glass jars filled with Foresbi honey were available for purchase at the CD stand. Foresbi honey is a natural product that is harvested from beehives in a RAPP conservation area, and is a product produced by CD partners in Pelalawan.
In addition to being able to view the resulting products of the CD programmes, visitors were able to view video footage taken by the Ecosystem Restoration Riau project, which displayed the incredible fauna and wildlife in the areas currently in the process of being restored.
Lastly a number of tools used in the Fire-Free Village Programme (FFVP) such as the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (an unmanned monitoring tool or drone) and a variety of pumps, including a special Mark III and mini striker, were displayed.
During the closing ceremony RAPP won the category for best private booth, an achievement they are proud to have maintained. “Participation in this activity shows our support to the government for the process in Pelalawan”- Rudi Fajar, Director of RAPP.