In the year 1983, a ranger rescued a baby chimpanzee from poachers who had smuggled the animal from DR Congo. He took the baby chimpanzee to a farm owned by some family members, they nursed the chimp-nicknamed “Pal” back to health. People from all over started bringing abused and orphaned chimps and by 1988 they had 19 chimps in their care. Before they knew it, a chimpanzee orphanage had begun.
Pal, the first ape rescued by the Siddles, arrived in dire condition, his mouth injured by the bullet that probably killed his mother.
Image courtesy of Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage.
A number of the chimpanzees were born at Chimfunshi whereas others were rescued from adverse conditions across the world. Chimfunshi Wildlife Sanctuary is the largest shelter for Chimpanzees in the world. The sanctuary is located in the Northern part of Zambia and serves as a home for over 130 chimpanzees rescued from poachers and bushmeat traders, with a wide area of 4,200 acres. The chimps have adjacent cages used for daily feeding during which the health of the chimpanzees are monitored and medical examinations carried out from time to time. The apes only enter the cages for feeding purposes.
Decades after the arrival of the first chimpanzee, Chimfunshi has been struggling with the day-to-day amenities needed to give adequate care to its inhabitants and issues related to maintaining a sustainable flow of funding year after year.
There is an estimate of 5 million chimps that roamed through the Western and Central part of Africa during the 20th century, however, poaching and the destruction of natural resources has pushed the species close to extinction. Currently, it is believed that there are less than 200,000 chimpanzees in the wild, making them an endangered species.
Why should you donate to Chimfunshi?
Chimfunshi Wildlife Orphanage operates entirely on donations and sponsorships, hence without donations, the inhabitants of the shelter will be unable to survive. Also, Chimfunshi provides options of sponsorship programs which benefit the environment and other wildlife.
Fun fact: Did you know that Chimpanzees can live for 50 years or more, so each new animal the center takes in will require decades of care and financial support?
Visit www.chimfunshiwildlife.org to donate to Chimfunshi Wildlife Sanctuary.
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