Education & Awareness
We raise awareness all over the world about bonobos and their plight.
And for 25 years, we have been educating and raising awareness in the DR Congo, the only country where bonobos live in the wild.
people who have participated in our education programs since 2005.
more than half are children and youth
The Congo Basin is home to the second-largest rainforest in the world. And 60% percent of that forest is located in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Yet, not all Congolese people know their rainforests are the only place in the world where endangered bonobos can be found!
Your support helps change that. Each year, up to 30,000 people visit Lola ya Bonobo sanctuary outside of Kinshasa to discover the fascinating lives of bonobos.
Face to face
Visitors walk along trails and see bonobos living in 75-acres of semi-wild habitat -- playing in ponds, foraging for food, caring for their babies, or chasing each other through the trees.
Children and adults alike can see how much humans and bonobos have in common.
97.8% of our DNA is the same!
"Education is the key to conservation."
Claudine André, founder of Friends of Bonobos and Lola ya Bonobo Sanctuary
With Lola ya Bonobo’s guidance, more than 40 Kindness Clubs have been created in schools in and around Kinshasa.
Through Kindness Clubs the future leaders of DRC learn about their nation's endangered wildlife, abundant biodiversity, and ecosystems whose survival is critical to the future of the planet. They learn about threats to these natural treasures from poaching, climate change, and habitat loss.
And most important, they gain the understanding they need to create a better future for bonobos!
Education Across Congo
Your support also makes it possible for us to give educational presentations in the remote, rural schools and villages surrounding our Ekolo ya Bonobo Community Reserve and in Basankusu, the nearby capital of Équateur Province.
We offer free, educational film screenings. These films show the risks of disease transmission when people hunt bush meat, and why keeping bonobos as pets is not only illegal but also wrong for the bonobos, who suffer, get sick, and die. We work with local radio stations to share information about the local environment.
Through these educational programs, and by providing access to observe happy bonobos thriving in the wild, we strive to inspire Congolese to take pride in their natural heritage and work to protect it.
Education Programs Change Attitudes
After children visit Lola ya Bonobo, surveys show they know more about bonobos and why we should protect them.
Children also retain the knowledge a year later.
An independently conducted study finds a significant improvement in children's attitudes toward bonobos and wildlife conservation after visiting our sanctuary.
Adult Congolese visitors are shown to know a lot about bonobos before visiting, a sign that over the years, our programs have made a difference!