Lwiro Primate Rehabilitation Centre
Located in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the CRPL is home to more than 90 chimpanzees and 100 monkeys of other species rescued from poaching and illegal trafficking. It also provides temporary shelter to other animals who have been detained by the environmental authorities (ICCN, Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature), such as parrots, porcupines, turtles and mongooses, among others.
To understand the work of the CRPL it is important to mention that the local population eat animals they hunt from the forest (bushmeat) due to a lack of domestic livestock to cover their dietary needs. They focus on hunting adult animals, while infants are sent to the illegal pet trade to earn extra money.
The CRPL sits on land which, at the time of the Belgian colonisation, served as an institute of investigation and experimentation, and which now falls under the CRSN, the Natural Science Research Centre. It is important to note that the CRPL does not breed the primates it houses as its objective is to continue accepting infants orphaned by the consumption of bushmeat or rescued from illegal trafficking. For the same reason they also do not purchase the animals which arrive there, but receive them from the detentions of the ICCN, with whom they collaborate where necessary, whether through training courses or the implementation of resources for park rangers. Various international NGOs offer their support to the CRPL, as you can see detailed in the section “Our supporters”, as well as national NGOs, among which we must point out the organisation “Coopera”, which since 2006 has taken on the commitment of running the CRPL. There is now an advisory board formed of all of these organisations, including SOS Primates.