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Virunga National Park is one of the most special places on the planet. It is Africa’s oldest and most biologically diverse protected area, home to the famed mountain gorilla and more species of birds, reptiles and mammals than any other protected area on the continent.

Most recently it became the new home to about 580 African savanna elephants, thanks to the park’s recent and critical conservation efforts in its central savanna. Now the elephants are rewilding the landscape, pummeling invasive plants and transforming it back to a grassland, allowing the return of grazers and other wildlife species that have been absent from the park for the last two decades.

The elephants, gorillas, other wildlife, and rangers need your help.

What Your Support Will Help Achieve

 

The joyous return of the elephants at these numbers comes during a particularly tough year for Virunga, which has been closed to tourism since March and, as a result, has struggled to sustain its critical functions. In addition, in April, 12 Virunga rangers, a driver and four members of the local community lost their lives in a ferociously violent attack by a militia group, the deadliest known attack on park rangers on the African continent in recent history. All of this while rangers and staff have been managing the impacts of both Ebola and COVID-19 on the park and local communities.

The Virunga Fund supports our partners at Virunga National Park at this critical time as they head into 2021. With the help of Leonardo DiCaprio and Emerson Collective, along with support from the European Commission, the fund was launched to provide urgent support for our partners on the ground to deliver critical disease prevention efforts, law enforcement, and the protection of the iconic and critically endangered mountain gorilla, in addition to supporting the families of rangers who have fallen in the line of duty.

100% of your donations will go towards Virunga’s rangers and the necessary operational costs to ensure they are well supported. Here are some examples of where even small dollar donations can make a big difference:

$8 – A pair of new boots for a ranger
$32 – Funds a ranger for one day (includes family health insurance)
$50 – One month of support for the widow and children of a fallen ranger
$150 – Two weeks of food and supplements for an orphaned gorilla
$500 – One anti-poaching aerial surveillance flight to protect elephants and hippos
$1,000 – A comprehensive sweep and removal of deadly snares in the mountain gorilla habitat