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Dear All,

This is wonderful news to share !

YES! J.A.C.K. feels extremely blessed as our small sanctuary was granted a substantial donation from the International Primate Protection League with the help of the Arcus Foundation.

Thanks to this grant, an Education Center will be built and, as you can already see below, works have recently started… 

map the coming education center

map the coming education center

 

The center will be open to all and the visitors will find information about biodiversity in general and about the unique species native only to the DRC (like the okapi, bonobo, and Congolese peacock). Also, chimpanzee habitat, history, and biology, as well as the different threats faced daily by these great apes will be described.IMG_6461

Some Conservation messages will be meant to individuals posing a threat to apes (poachers, soldiers buying and selling them, expatriates using them as pets)  while other messages will be aimed to people in position to help  control threats (wildlife officials, government authorities).IMG_6483

Until now, our  small sanctuary has always set any donations in the building of facilities and in the physical and mental welfare of its boarders. But with the rapid decline of these creatures J.A.C.K. has to expend all its efforts to increase awareness among locals but also among the people supplying this trade and the ones helping fight against this terrible trade.IMG_0908

Therefore and thanks to IPPL considerable support J.A.C.K. will move on to an additional stage in the DRC Conservation programme.IMG_0914-1

Thank you again, IPPL/USA, and many thanks also to IPPL supporters for your interest and wish to participate! Your help is really appreciated; it enables J.A.C.K. to make a huge step forward!!!

Merci beaucoup,

Roxane

PS/ cet article est disponible en Français sur http://jackchimp.yolasite.com/

 

Dear All,

124.025 visitors came at our project for free last year among which 80% were kids from different schools!

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Conservation and Education go together and a free entrance is also a way to make more and more local people  aware about Environment, about Wildlife and Protection of their national patrimony.

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J.A.C.K. needs you to continue having these visitors for free and wish you to continue participating in our action. It is essential for Great Apes that more and more people get interested in their Environment. So, any donation is always more than welcome!

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THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

Roxane

Hi Everyone!

As to definitely say goodbey to the year 2009 and to end  on a very good note, Franck & I wished to share this particular event with you!

You all know that J.A.C.K. takes care of chimpanzee and galago orphans. This time, J.A.C.K. wanted to do something different. This time, J.A.C.K. decided to organise an unusual event for  young Congolese orphans.

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That’s why, on December 24th, about 100 orphan children from Lubumbashi were invited at the J.A.C.K. complex for Christmas.

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Madam Thérèse Lukenge Kapibwe, Provincial Minister of Education, Youth, Scientific Research, Woman’s condition and Family,  had also been invited to participate at the event ….

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and so were the medias.

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The children sang and seemed happy to be at J.A.C.K.  

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Most of the faces changed a few minutes later when Father Christmas arrived with his hands full of presents!

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Curiosity but also…. fear,  happiness and joy was seen on every faces…

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Each child received a Christmas present which was a red bag full of toys, cookies and school items.

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Later on, a Christmas lunch was offered to all of them!

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But we insist on the fact that our small NGO couldn’t organise this all alone. We had good friends and local donors assisting us . But there was ONE main local sponsor whose generosity has been without limits: the Trust Merchant Bank.

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Thanks to the TMB Bank, J.A.C.K. has been able to offer a few moments of joy to orphan kids as for most of them, it was the first time they had met Father Christmas …

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Thanks to the TMB Bank, J.A.C.K. organised a big lunch for all these excited kids who are not used to have Christmas parties…

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Thanks to the TMB Bank, J.A.C.K. has been given the opportunity to make more people aware about what is going on with Great Apes in the DRC as these  children of today will be the leaders of tomorrow!

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Great thanks to the TRUST MECRHANT BANK for this wonderful support! It was appreciated by everyone especially by the kids!

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Also, we keep on reminding you that J.A.C.K. is a small NGO and that we need your help to continue taking care of the 29 orphan chimpanzees of the Refuge. J.A.C.K. must develop its education program. 3 new chimpanzees are due to arrive soon from Kivu. J.A.C.K. hasn’t collected the funds necessary to build the extra quarantine enclosure. Please, if you can, donate now… 

Thank YOU for THEM!

Roxane & Franck

Hello Friends of JACK !

 

When Franck was attending the PASA meeting in the US last June, he met Beth of the Brevard Zoo who offered JACK a big suitcase full of books and puppets.

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This Environmental Teaching Suitcase, imagine, is a wonderful donation that will now enable JACK progress in its education program as I already mentioned Conservation in Africa can mainly be done through Education.

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So, end of June, Franck and I worked with kids of the 1st Kindergarten of the Belgian Program School of Lubumbashi. 

What you must know is that for the last 6 months, Miss Séverine, teacher of the 1st Kindergarten, had been working with her little ones (aged 3 to 4).

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At this stage, you usually teach basic vocabulary: children put words on their environment and learn they live in a house, have a garden with trees… They also study what they eat, discover the different shapes and colours, start counting, etc.

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This year, the little kids of Miss Séverine not only had that basic program; they also studied further as to compare themselves with a particular animal: the chimpanzee!

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By doing so, at the end of the school year, the little ones knew about the habitat of the chimp, its food, its physical aspect, his facial mimics, etc. They did a wonderful work and Franck and I visited them to congratulate these very young pupils.

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Also, during this particular visit, we had the Brevard Zoo teaching suitcase  and together with the little friends of JACK we built up the story of a baby lion called “Simba’, lost in the forest as his parents had been poached… Simba was looking for new friends of the forest and every child was given a puppet to play the long, long story….

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I was amazed how so young kids could interact and I felt very impressed by their knowledge about chimps and their environment.

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Miss Séverine has done an excellent work and it is thanks to people like her that chimpanzees hope to have a better future. Children of today will be the leaders of tomorrow and this kind of action represents a lot in the survival of the Great Apes and their general environment.

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Thank you Séverine for all your patience and hard work.

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Thanks also to Beth and the Brevard Zoo for enabling JACK improving its education program.

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And great thanks too to Erika, Princesse, Dan, Shamin, Alex and the other pupils of the 1st Kindergarten for your interest and participation. JACK spent a great time with you!

 

Roxane

 

Hello Friends of JACK,

I hope you enjoyed your weekend and that most of the ladies had a memorable Mothers’ Day!

Today, I want to talk about two authors and friends, Alain HUART and Chantal TOMBU, who have had their brand new book recently published. This piece of art is written in French but you actually don’t need to speak this language to appreciate the beauty and the colours of the pictures. The book is called “Congo, pays magnifique” (Congo, wonderful country). More pictures can be seen on the following website: http://congo.skynetblogs.be/

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Alain mainly works in Kinshasa for the Ministry of Agriculture and is an excellent photographer. He came at JACK on September 12th 2007 and encouraged us a lot to continue the good job. While visiting, he told Franck JACK at that period was ’till at the embryonic stage compared to Lola ya Bonobo’…

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Alain and Chantal visiting JACK

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Born in the Congo, Chantal is an Art Historian. She used to work at the National Museum of Lubumbashi.  Thanks to her, JACK has had many opportunities to organise lectures at the Museum thus making people and authorities aware about Great Apes and their threats in the DRC.

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lecture at the National Museum of Lubumbashi

Together, Alain and Chantal have decided to set up a book showing the beauties of our country, the DR Congo. There are plenty of magnificent pictures and the texts are full of interests. This master piece gives a colourful and positive idea of the DRC, which is very often criticised and forgotten…

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Franck and Chantal

Page 138 is dedicated to JACK and if you have a better look at the pictures, you’ll recognise Maman Angeline carrying both Zamba and little Doguy! The chimp on top, of course, you’ll recognise him too: it’s Chita, our “boss” (dominant male)!!!

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Chita (top) and Maman Angeline with Zamba & Doguy. On the left, one of the different signs people can read during their visit of the Refuge ” Buying a chimpanzee means you are part of the trade since you have participated to the slaughter of the whole group”
Thank you again, Alain, Chantal and all the other participants of this wonderful book: writing about JACK will help the project and its chimps to be known all around the world!  
Encore un tout grand merci pour EUX! Et encore félicitations pour le très beau travail!

Roxane

Friends of JACK,

First of all, thanks to all of you who are reading us and supporting us. Remember that the development and the progress of the Refuge is linked to your generosity.

The JACK Refuge for seized chimpanzees is located in the Lubumbashi Zoo in the middle of the city of Lubumbashi. JACK has been there now for nearly 3 years and this location is strategic as it attracts a lot of visitors, pupils and…authorities.

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From the left to the right: (1) Mr. Kongolo BIN MALOBA, Katanga Coordinator of Environment (2) Roxane (3) DRC national Minister of Environment, Mr. José ENDUNDO (4) Katanga Provincial Minister of Environment, Mrs. Thérèse LUKENGE 

Records have indeed been kept for the last 17 months on the number of visitors coming at the Centre and the results are amazing: an average of 12000 people per month visited the Refuge!

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For the year 2008, we had

– 55,56%  Congolese children under 12 (schools mainly!) ,

– 43,41%  Congolese adults and teenagers

– and some expats  (1,03%)

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To our knowledge, the JACK Refuge is the only primate centre in Africa were visitors do enter for free. Entrance fees are asked at the main gate of the Zoo and once people enter JACK, they are NOT charged.

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Among the 55,56% of kids are schools. Hundreds of pupils can show up at once at the complex and do stay at the main enclosure as for hygiene and security reasons, no one is allowed to enter the back of the Refuge where we have quarantine and night facilities.

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Visitor’s area is covered with educative panels, boards and posters.

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Most of them have been drawn by us and messages are given in French and in Swahili:

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FOR EACH CHIMPANZEE THAT YOU SEE AT THE REFUGE, 10 OTHERS WERE KILLED WHEN PROTECTING HIM/HER FROM POACHERS

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BYING A CHIMPANZEE MEANS YOU ARE PART OF THE TRADE AND YOU PARTICIPATED TO THE SLAUGHTER

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DON’T BUY ME!  DON’T EAT ME!  DON’T SELL ME!  RESPECT ME!

The visitor’s area will be developed once we manage to obtain funds. JACK needs to build an educative hut where the different threats will be explained, we also need a small building where children can see movies, videos on wildlife…

We are convinced Conservation is possible through Education only. That’s why in 2009 the Education Program of JACK is on the agenda : it is very urgent to start working with schools. Not only because the species is in danger but also because the children of today will be the leaders of tomorrow.

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Roxane

 

Dear Friends,

Today, I dedicate my post to a very particular lady from Sweden called Ing-Marie Persson. She runs a Trust called Sweden Chimpanzee Trust  and has a park in Sweden named Furuvik.

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Mrs. Ing-Marie and Manda

The Sweden Chimpanzee Trust is a non-profit organization for the conservation of the endangered chimpanzees. It is coordinated with the Jane Goodall Institute, the Wild Chimpanzee foundation and Pan Africa Sanctuary Alliance(PASA).

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Its role is (1) to actively support the preservation of chimpanzees, (2) to educate, inform and to raise public awareness on the situation of chimpanzees in Africa , and (3) to collect funds to support maintenance and  research of chimpanzees’ natural habitat.

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Mrs. Ing-Marie Persson and Dr. Jane Goodall

Franck met Ing-Marie at the PASA meeting in TACUGAMA and since then we have become good friends .

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Mrs. Ing-Marie, Mrs. Sheila Siddle and Franck

Thank you Ing-Marie for your friendship and also for your trust in JACK !    I know we’ll do a long way together….

 

Roxane

Sorry for editing so late; had to leave DRC for three weeks because of medical problems. Now, all is fine, and I can finally send you the latest news.

It was a real pleasure to us to welcome Samantha Newport ( Communications Director of WildlifeDirect) end of last January. She had decided to come to Lubumbashi for 1 1/2 day in order to visit the Refuge Centre and also to train me in blogging. So, Franck and I knew we would spend just a few hours only with her and that the visit would be immensely short!

Samantha appreciated a lot the Centre and loved to see all the young apes running and playing around in the main enclosure. CHITA had become her favorite chimp: he’s the alpha male and is an adorable and very pacific “boss”.

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Samantha and Chita

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Chita enjoying his milkbottle in Sam’s arms

During her stay, Samantha noticed the different things that have been recently built thanks to your donations in order to improve security. Remember, in a previous post, I told you visitors liked to lean and climb/sit on the wall of the main enclosure to watch the chimps.

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Visitors love to climb and to sit on the wall

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Visitors

But, today and thanks to your help, it is getting more difficult to do so, as with your donations:

(1)a second electrical fence has been fixed above the first one and very close to the top of the wall to prevent people from sitting. It also represents an extra security as the chimp babies are now growing and might be interested in jumping over the wall…

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Fixing a second electrical fence

(2) boards have been drawn, painted and placed along the main enclosure: visitors must understand that it’s forbidden to feed the chimps.

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New boards have been drawn

(3) every weekend, when most visitors come, one young Congolese student, called Ghislain, stands at the entrance of the enclosure, welcomes visitors, gives any kind of details on what J.A.C.K. does and checks if people don’t throw things over the wall. He’s our first fence! Of course, there are surrogate mothers inside the enclosure with the babies, but when someone throws something, it goes too fast and it is sometimes too late!

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Ghislain (white cap in the middle)giving details to visitors

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Ghislain

(4) since last weekend, an extra wired meche fence has been set up not far from the wall sothat people don’t even go too close to the enclosure any more. If you stand on that little hill, you still have a nice look of the chimps in their environment. Now, lets cross our fingers that visitors won’t climb onto the fence….

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Placing an extra fence

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Extra fence thanks to your donations

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Visitors can still have a look at the chimps in their enclosure

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Visitors can still observe the chimps

Before ending, I really wish to apologize that I haven’t been able to write you earlier. Also, I do thank all of you for your patience and support. While I was away, we did receive the following donations:

* Free donations: Lucia C (50$), Oliver T (25$) and Pirjo L (50$)

* Monthly donations : Theresa S (30), Brigitta S (10) and Theresa S (10).

Building this extra protection has been done thanks to your donations mainly and this is something we will never forget!Again, Sam, thanks to you for your indulgence (teaching me took a lot of your time!) and for your visit. Franck and I hope you’ll keep a good souvenir of these short moments spent together…

Roxane, Franck and the Chimps

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