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Care for Rangers Protecting Gorillas

February 11, 2021

Last July, Thin Green Line provided support for Ranger teams protecting gorillas and other rare species in remote areas of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  

The Ranger Care Box program enabled teams working in three reserves with the Gorilla Organization to purchase personal field equipment.  

Mia Cooke-Joshi of the Gorilla Organization not only provided the field report – she sent us a lovely letter of thanks, with photos. 

“Thank you for your incredibly generous donation to The Gorilla Organization rangers in July 2020, through your Ranger Care Box initiative,” Mia said. 

“Our rangers in eastern DRC often experience extreme isolation, especially during COVID-19 when lockdowns have been in place in the region,” said Mia. “Therefore, gifts for each ranger go a long way in lifting morale.” 

“Your contribution also provides our rangers with essential equipment that allows them to carry out their gorilla conservation work. Working in the forest can be arduous; therefore, gifts to rangers make their work much easier and more effective.”

According to Jennifer Mann, TGLF Programs Coordinator, most teams already know what equipment they need, they just aren’t able to afford it.

“Ranger Care Box applicants are encouraged to procure their equipment locally where possible – supporting local economies, reducing emissions from transport, ensuring gear arrives in a timely manner and avoiding import/export costs,” Jennifer said.

Ranger Care Box gear often includes waterproof ponchos and shelters, uniforms, boots, and first-aid kits. Since initiating our Ranger Care Box program in 2019, Thin Green Line has supported 12 Ranger Care Box projects; providing over 1300 Rangers from 15 countries with critical gear to do their work safely.

The Gorilla Organization work across borders in the region where mountain gorillas and eastern lowland gorillas live in the wild. 

Ranger Care Boxes found their way to remote wild places including Tayna Gorilla ReserveItombwe Reserve, and Maiko National Park, DRC. These protected areas are home to gorillas and other rare animals including chimpanzees, bonobosokapis and forest elephants. 

And the Gorilla Organization has reported a gorilla baby boom in 2020! In both Rwanda and Uganda, three times the usual number of mountain gorilla babies have been born in the last 12 months, with 11 born in Bwindi National Park, Uganda. 

All images courtesy of The Gorilla Organization.

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We believe the practical, direct action of rangers is the most necessary and effective way to overcome the environmental challenges of our time. Thin Green Line is a global not-for-profit conservation organisation.