Who We Are
It began with friendship.
Native started out as an unexpected encounter between an enterprising Orang Asli aspirant and a bright-eyed civil engineering student.
In 2018, founder Daniel Teoh had been visiting Kampung Sungai Lalang for a volunteer project when he met Faizul, a Temuan native who was already at work building a new home for his family. Gathering a proverbial village of support, they successfully completed building Faizul’s home together. The experience turned them into good friends but it was Faizul’s hospitality which inspired a whole host of new possibilities in Daniel’s imagination.
With his world view evolving during his time with Faizul, Daniel found a deep respect for indigenous principles and found himself transformed for the better. Why not make such experiences available to more people in a way that empowers the Orang Asli to use their heritage and wisdom to support their own goals?
Faizul and his community graciously agreed to be our first Native partners, setting the scene for a new wave of accessible indigenous travel in Peninsular Malaysia. The rest is history.
All our ventures are hosted and led by our community partners. We encourage them to take literal ownership of every venture that we build together where we are committed to providing bespoke support meant to nurture them into independent entrepreneurs who are capable of creating a positive impact in their communities.
Native takes a co-creation approach which gives our Orang Asli partners full autonomy in matters regarding their participation in our business activities together. They are included in all decision-making processes which foreseeably impact them. We actively cultivate healthy partnerships between Native and our community partners and every community member has equal avenues to make their voice heard.
Our approach is to not only empower our community partners as entrepreneurs, but to also build empowering narratives around the Orang Asli. This involves empowering our guests with firsthand knowledge of the invaluable role our community partners play in nurturing our land and preserving a treasure trove of traditional skills.
Community-led and ally-supported.
We co-create community-based tourism ventures with indigenous communities in Peninsular Malaysia to boost livelihoods while enabling respectful cultural discovery.
We want to help the world discover the best of Orang Asli heritage with the goal of breaking stereotypes and encouraging healthy intercultural relationships.
Every visit is designed to create an impact – and give guests the opportunity to choose to be an indigenous ally.