Project #11196

Empower 22 African Communities to Protect Primates

by Pan African Sanctuary Alliance
Bo lives in an office and eats unsuitable food
Bo lives in an office and eats unsuitable food

Dear Primate Supporter,

Although great apes are humans’ closest genetic kin, humans have pushed them to the brink of extinction. It’s estimated that 3,000 apes are lost from the wild every year, largely due to the illegal hunting of endangered species, the illicit wildlife trade, and widespread habitat loss.

Will we let the great apes become extinct in our lifetime? As primate advocates, we can’t allow it. With your help sharing our message, they do have a chance.

PASA is working closely with our 22 member organizations in 13 African countries to implement diverse projects to protect primates and their habitat. Some of the most pioneering work is community development projects that give local people alternatives to cutting down forest or hunting apes and monkeys.

Bo is an adorable baby chimpanzee in Guinea-Bissau who was illegally stolen from the forest last year. The law authorities confiscated little Bo but they don’t have facilities to take care of her. She’s now living in a national park office and eating whatever people happen to feed her.

Bo urgently needs to be moved to a proper sanctuary and PASA and Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Kenya are working to arrange an export permit. We hope that soon, Bo will spend the rest of her days living in a huge forest habitat with dozens of other chimps.

As a registered nonprofit in the U.S. with close partnerships with wildlife protection organizations across Africa, PASA provides a trusted way to ensure your donations go where they are most urgently needed and are used as efficiently as possible.

Thank you for your compassion.

Please help Bo get to a proper wildlife sanctuary!
Please help Bo get to a proper wildlife sanctuary!


Faces of PASA
Faces of PASA

Our closest living relatives in the animal kingdom are suffering? Don't turn your back on Africa's primates!

African wildlife law enforcement continues to combat illegal primate trade daily, but still Africa's primates are in danger. The population is rapidly disappearing. Habitat destruction for palm oil, mining, logging, oil development, human settlement and agriculture are consuming the remaining primate habitat at an alarming rate. Primates are commonly hunted for bushmeat or for the pet or commercial trades. Unless behaviors change, we could lose our closest relatives –chimpanzees, bonobos and gorillas – as well as the rich diversity of African monkey species within a few generations.


In recent months, PASA affiliates have gotten involved in a number of primate rescue missions across Africa.

For the past several years, Ponso, an adult male chimpanzee has been stranded – deserted on an almost uninhabitable mangrove island in Liberia – in an environment that could not provide fresh drinking water or any naturally occurring food. To make matters worse, Ponso, is one of the sixty-six captive chimpanzees remaining from what was the New York Blood Center’s biomedical research development in Liberia. Ponso watched his mate and offspring, along with 18 other chimpanzee companions and their children, die of starvation on the same island that he still sits upon. Finally, there is hope for Ponso’s rescue. Estelle Raballand, the director of the Chimpanzee Conservation Center in Guinea, recently visited the island to check up on the poor chimp. To her surprise, she was greeted with a gentle, but genuine hug from the Ponso himself. Despite years of having harsh experiments conducted on him, and being subjected to abuse and starvation by his human captors of the New York Blood Center, Ponso could still express compassion for Estelle, his human defender. The Chimpanzee Conservation Center as well as many other PASA members have offered Ponso sanctuary. The PASA network is doing everything possible to ensure that the proper permits are obtained to guarantee Ponso safe passage to his new home.

PASA member Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary received a very young chimpanzee they named Matilda early this year. They suspect she was orphaned because of bushmeat hunting or human-wildlife conflicts. Matilda is only around 3.5 month old. She had a bad cough and was breathing heavy upon arrival, but has been eating well. She is now being looked after by her surrogate mother and receiving all the care that she needs. "It is concerning that the bushmeat hunting seems to have started increasing again after the Ebola crisis. We have to keep reminding people of the dangers of eating primates!” says Tacugama conservationist.

In Guinea-Bissau, Bo a wild baby chimpanzee was illegally stolen from the forest last year. After Bo was confiscated by the local authorities, there was no appropriate facility in Guinea-Bissau to rehabilitate the little orphan. PASA recently discovered that she’s now living in a national park office and eating anything that is made available to her by the surrounding people. Poor nutrition and social development this early in Bo’s life can cause a lifetime of stress. Bo urgently needs to be moved to a proper sanctuary, especially before she grows bigger and is potentially unsafe around people.

PASA and Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Kenya are working with people in Guinea-Bissau to try to arrange an export permit. We hope that soon, Bo will be able to spend the rest of her days living in a huge forest habitat at Sweetwaters with dozens of other chimps like her.

Just this past week, an adolescent male chimpanzee, nicknamed “Kimia”, which means “peace” in the Lingala language spoken widely in Central Africa, who had been kept as a pet in a military camp in northern Democratic Republic of Congo was confiscated by Congolese wildlife officials and transported by United Nations peacekeepers to a rehabilitation center in South Kivu. The transfer was arranged by the Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP), led by Doug Cress, the founder of PASA. GRASP worked closely with the Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature (ICCN) and U.N. peacekeeping forces (MONUSCO) to bring the chimpanzee to the Lwiro Primate Rehabilitation Centre (CPRL), one of PASA's member organizations. Little “Kimia” was placed in quarantine before being allowed to join the other 64 chimpanzees in the spacious four-hectare forest enclosure at the center’s facility in Bukavu.


PASA has begun planning for its annual Strategic Development Conference that is to take place in Africa later this year. The Strategic Development Conference in Nairobi, Kenya from November 4 to 7, 2015 marked the 16th annual meeting of the leaders of Africa’s primate sanctuaries. Thirty-five people participated in the conference, including leaders of 20 of the 22 PASA member organizations and five members of PASA’s Board of Directors. The Strategic Development Conference represented a new beginning for the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance. In contrast to past years, the sanctuary presence drastically exceeded that of Western specialists. The conference agenda incorporated discussions led by highly knowledgeable sanctuary directors that provided participants with practical knowledge readily applicable to the African context. Focusing sessions more on internal development provided the opportunity to learn about the needs of the member organizations and determine how PASA can address them, rebuild the members’ confidence in PASA, provide a forum for sharing ideas and knowledge, and provide training.

The desire for PASA to develop a mutually beneficial partnership with the EAGLE Network ensued after a guest presentation by Ofir Drory on the illegal wildlife trade and EAGLE’s work to enforce the laws against it. Post conference discussions between EAGLE Network and PASA affiliated organizations have increased the opportunities for collaboration. Special guests, Jim and Jenny Desmond, illustrated the situation facing the chimpanzees recently abandoned in Liberia by a New York Blood Center research facility. They described their plan to travel to Liberia to improve the living conditions of the chimpanzees and create a sanctuary for them. In addition, new PASA volunteer, Kourtney Stumpe gave a presentation on Open Data Kit (ODK), a versatile app which can be used for recording data or various forms of multimedia. Following the conference, Kourtney traveled to six of the PASA member organizations to assess the potential utility of the app, train the staff members on how to maneuver it, and set up a unique form base that would get them started. Exploring the diversity of fundraising channels available and particularly reaching individual donors through the internet and social media were identified as a major goals. The conference highlighted the vast intellectual resources of PASA, and opened doors for innovation. Overall a strong, supportive network was reestablished among PASA and its members and the atmosphere was positive and collaborative.


At the Strategic Development Conference PASA expressed an interest in conducting a census of the number of staff members and animals within PASA affiliated organizations. Submissions from each sanctuary came in during the following weeks. It was concluded that there are currently a total of 2,851 primates and 495 staff members within 22 PASA facilities. Among the diverse array of species in their care are gorillas, chimpanzees, bonobos, over fifteen species of monkey, as well as a few other primate species. The figure below represents the percent breakdown of each group in the total population of primates in member wildlife centers.

Preliminary results of the historical data collection project using the open source mobile application, Open Data Kit Collect, concluded that:

  • 48% of the animals in PASA wildlife centers were confiscated from traffickers.
  • 27% of the animals in PASA wildlife centers were rescued from inhumane situations.
  • Animals have been rescued from as far away as Italy and the United Arab Emirates.
  • Government authorities were only known to be involved in 34% of the rescues, (presumably) putting much of the burden of rescuing the animals on nonprofits.
  • The rescued animals came from diverse situations including being used for entertainment, being used as pets, and being trafficked in the international wildlife trade.

PASA vows to be an invaluable resource for primate sanctuaries throughout Africa. Recognizing the intrinsic value that wildlife sanctuaries provide as a nexus of long term commitment to enforcement of wildlife laws, animal welfare and conservation of wild primates, we will advocate for our member sanctuaries on these and other relevant issues and provide a readily accessible international communication network for these members. PASA's programs will evolve with the threats that face African primates and the needs of our members; we will continuously seek creative solutions to provide our members with the best tools to promote long term success in the fight to protect and care for Africa's primates. We will accomplish this while maintaining PASA's Culture of Trust and Caring. We will follow PASA's Code of Values which includes transparency, collaboration, fairness, competence, humility and respect both internally with our member sanctuaries and in our relationships with supporters, governments, and non-governmental organizations. Every African primate sanctuary, regardless of size, will be able to obtain quality training and access to conservation services from a membership organization that puts its members' collective interests first and foremost.

Stay tuned for more updates and recent news from the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance. We’re very grateful to you for making this work possible through your generous support.

Ponso clings to Estelle in relief.
Ponso clings to Estelle in relief.
Matilda, a 3.5 month old by-product of bush meat
Matilda, a 3.5 month old by-product of bush meat
"Kimia", Lingala for "peace"
"Kimia", Lingala for "peace"
"Kimia" airlifted home.
"Kimia" airlifted home.
I want to help rescue chimps!
I want to help rescue chimps!

Primates Who Were Rescued from the Cruel Wildlife Trade Need Your Help!

Can't see the pictures? Click here

Dear Friends,

This is your last chance to make a tax deductible donation in 2015 to protect chimpanzees from extinction!

Gorillas and chimpanzees in protected forests in Africa are shot down and butchered in the bushmeat trade, and the babies, who are too small to eat, are sold on the black market to be pets. In other areas, baby primates are stolen from the forest to be trafficked to China or the Middle East where they are sold as pets or put on exhibit in appallingly inhumane zoos. These highly intelligent and social animals face a miserable existence locked in cages or living in isolation.

However, through collaboration between wildlife centers, other nonprofit organizations, and government agencies, some smugglers are arrested and animals are saved. Thousands of chimpanzees and other primates who have been rescued as babies from the horrific wildlife trade now live at PASA member wildlife centers across Africa.

Little Kanoa was Rescued from Being Smuggled to China

In 2012, the Cameroon authorities with LAGA of the EAGLE Network arrested a wildlife dealer with a 1 1/2 year old infant chimpanzee. After little Kanoa’s mother was brutally killed by a poacher, he was sold to the dealer who planned to smuggle him out of Cameroon into the international wildlife market in China. However Kanoa probably wouldn’t have survived the journey because the violent hunt that killed his mother left him in severe pain with an open, badly infected fracture to his left leg.

Kanoa was brought to Sanaga-Yong Chimpanzee Rescue Center in Cameroon where he received extensive medical treatment and much-needed loving care. While his leg was healing, he spent his first months confined indoors and gazing longingly out to the forest. However, all attempts to carry him outside left him panicked and running back indoors. He seemed to pine for the life and the mother that he lost, but his last memories of that life were clearly terrifying.

After little Kanoa's leg finally healed, he caregivers gradually coaxed him outside and introduced him to five other young chimpanzees who accepted him almost immediately. These new friendships and the dedicated care of Sanaga-Yong’s staff helped him to heal emotionally, and he was soon playing in the forest as though he had never left it.

UPDATE: Today, Kanoa lives in a social group with those five young chimps and three adults, and he is happy and healthy. The name Kanoa means "the free one" in Hawaiian, and is an apt name for this little wild boy. Despite the horrific experiences he endured during his youth, he seems emotionally intact and has integrated well into his social group. Kanoa is especially bonded to Anita, and many of the staff say the two chimpanzees are best friends and are almost inseparable.

Additionally, this lively chimp doesn't show any signs of his former injury. He enjoys being carried around by the adults as any healthy young chimp would. Kanoa is a favorite of the staff as well as the visitors at Sanaga-Yong, and he is expected to live for decades.

Kanoa will probably spend his life at Sanaga-Yong, where he is safe from hunters and smugglers. However, the costs of caring for a chimpanzee for its entire life are tremendous.

Help care for Kanoa and other young chimps who have been rescued from cruel fates and live at Sanaga-Yong Chimpanzee Rescue Center.

You can Help Stop This Horrifying Trade!

The illegal wildlife trade is one of the biggest threats to the existence of apes and other endangered primates, in addition to causing unthinkable suffering.

You can help stop the cruelty. Click here to make it possible for wildlife centers to fight the illegal wildlife trade and give lifetime care to animals rescued from the trade.

Most of the animals in PASA's 22 member sanctuaries in 13 African countries were rescued from traffickers. Wildlife sanctuaries play an essential role in stopping the wildlife trade because without their commitment to provide lifetime care for animals confiscated from smugglers, many of the confiscations and arrests couldn’t happen.

Kanoa is a success story, but there are many more chimpanzees who urgently need to be rescued and cared for. We can't do it without you. Will you help an animal in desperate need today?

All best wishes,
Gregg Tully
Executive Director
Pan African Sanctuary Alliance

P.S. It's not too late to donate in 2015. You can provide lifesaving care to a baby primate by clicking here!

About PASA:

The Pan African Sanctuary Alliance (PASA), the largest association of wildlife centers in Africa, includes 22 organizations in 13 countries which are securing a future for Africa’s primates and their habitat by rescuing and caring for orphaned apes and monkeys, working to stop the illegal trade in wildlife, promoting the conservation of wild primates, educating the public, and empowering communities. PASA advocates for its member organizations on an international scale, provides them with support, and works closely with them to raise awareness globally about wildlife conservation issues.

Little Kanoa
Little Kanoa
Kanoa and Anita - best friends
Kanoa and Anita - best friends


Please give at
Please give at

Dear Friends,

I’m excited to tell you about a new project to bring wildlife conservation to every student in Cameroon, as well as a conference PASA will hold to empower primate sanctuaries across Africa and presentations in the U.S. by founders and directors of African sanctuaries. Thank you for making it all possible through your generous support.

Project to Add Conservation Education to Cameroon’s National Education Curriculum
PASA (the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance) recently held a workshop in collaboration with Cameroon’s three PASA member sanctuaries: Ape Action Africa, Limbe Wildlife Centre, and Sanaga-Yong Rescue Center. The workshop participants agreed that the greatest threat to Cameroon’s great apes is human intrusion into primate habitat and the resulting brutal killings and capture of the animals. These sanctuaries conduct community engagement programs that produce long-term improvements in the welfare of primates in their local areas but they don’t have the resources needed to expand this work to a national scale.

The key outcome of the workshop was a plan to add wildlife conservation to Cameroon’s national education curriculum, to educate every student in the country and produce an important and long-lasting shift in the thinking of the people of Cameroon. PASA and the sanctuaries intend to conduct a fairly short-term project with very a long-lasting and widespread impact: every student in Cameroon will have a better appreciation of wildlife. The program will have a vital role in preventing the extinction of Cameroon’s great apes.

Protect great apes by helping to make this important project a reality. To learn more about this and other programs for Africa’s primates, please visit PASA's website at!

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PASA Empowers Primate Sanctuaries across Africa

The Pan African Sanctuary Alliance will continue its longstanding tradition of bringing together the leaders of primate sanctuaries across Africa by holding a Strategic Development Conference in November in Nairobi, Kenya. The main goal of the conference is to help the sanctuaries build their capacity to provide high quality care for primates and expand their conservation programs. Directors and managers of more than 20 of PASA’s member sanctuaries will discuss the challenges they face, share ideas for overcoming them, and talk about how PASA can maximize its impact for the sanctuaries.
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Meet the Founders and Directors of African Sanctuaries!
Directors and founders of PASA member sanctuaries often travel the world to raise awareness about their sanctuaries’ work to protect primates, in addition to their many other responsibilities.

Bala Amarasekaran, founder and director of the Tacugama Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Sierra Leone, will give a lecture titled “Light at the End of the Tunnel… Surviving the Ebola Crisis in Sierra Leone” in Columbus, Ohio, USA. Please attend his fascinating and heartfelt presentation which will be on Thursday, October 8 at 6:30 pm at the Clintonville Women’s Club courtesy of the Columbus Zoo, and will be followed by a reception and silent auction to benefit the sanctuary. If you would like to attend, please RSVP at

Rachel Hogan, director of Ape Action Africa in Cameroon, will give a presentation at the San Francisco Zoo on Saturday, October 17 from 1:00 to 2:30 pm titled “My Life with Gorillas.” If you’re in the Bay Area, come meet Rachel and hear her stories about hand-raising days-old orphan gorillas and working on the front lines of gorilla conservation. Admission is free. For more information, contact the San Francisco Zoo at or call +1 415-753-7073.
Claudine Andre is the founder of Lola Ya Bonobo in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the world’s only sanctuary for orphaned bonobos. She will give a presentation about the successes of Lola Ya Bonobo and the roles of sanctuaries in conservation at the ZACC Conference in Denver, Colorado, USA on Wednesday, October 14. ZACC (Zoos and Aquariums Committing to Conservation), which builds connections between zoos and aquariums and conservation worldwide, will be from October 12 to 16 at the Renaissance Denver Hotel. Read more about ZACC and register online at

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The Apes and Monkeys Need Your Help!
PASA’s vital work to protect primates from extinction and support sanctuaries in Africa is only possible because of you. Please read more about the vital work to rescue apes and monkeys from bushmeat hunters and wildlife smugglers, give them lifelong loving care, and work to put an end to the illegal wildlife trade. Visit

All best wishes,
Gregg Tully
Executive Director
Pan African Sanctuary Alliance

About PASA:
The Pan African Sanctuary Alliance (PASA) is a unique collaboration of African primate sanctuaries, communities, governments, and global experts. PASA includes 22 sanctuaries in 12 countries across Africa which secure a future for Africa’s primates and their habitat by rescuing and caring for orphaned apes and monkeys, working to stop the illegal trade in wildlife, promoting the conservation of wild primates, educating the public, and empowering communities.

Africa's primates desperately need your help
The sanctuary staff from Cameroon
The sanctuary staff from Cameroon


The Pan African Sanctuary Alliance (PASA) is a network of wildife sanctuaries across Africa.  One of the biggest threats to conservation is the human population.  In addition to rapid deforestation, many endangered monkeys and apes are killed and sold for bushmeat or captured and sold as pets.  Education is a key component of saving these magnificent creatures.  PASA is hosting a workshop in July 2015 in Yaounde, Cameroon where we will bring together managers and educators from several of our member sanctuaries to discuss the community education projects that are making a positive impact for conservation. Our experienced facilitators will assist our member sanctuaries in evaluating past efforts and strategizing for future community projects. This workshop will include 2 days of interactive presentations and evaluations.  


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Organization Information

Pan African Sanctuary Alliance

Location: Portland, OR - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Gregg Tully
Pan African Sanctuary Alliance (PASA)
Portland, Oregon United States
$17,158 raised of $25,000 goal
119 donations
$7,842 to go
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