JACK Sanctuary (Jeunes Animal Confisques au Katanga) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) specialise in the rescue and rehabilitation of Chimpanzees and other primates, caught up in the illegal wildlife trade.
OAT's involvement in the project came about when we responded to a public appeal from PASA (Pan African Sanctuary Alliance) to help with the rehabilitation of 33 primates, confiscated by the wildlife authorities in Zimbabwe. The primates were taken from the wild in DRC as part of an illegal wildlife trade deal. Fortunately, the specialised wildlife trade authorities were made aware of this and were able to intervene when the truck carrying the primates was intercepted in Zimbabwe. It is believed they were en-route to South Africa before being exported to the East to those who had purchased them as exotic pets or for exhibits within zoos and circuses.
Once confiscated, the primates needed urgent care and attention due to the stress they had endured, and this was provided by a small animal welfare rescue centre in Zimbabwe with the help of Lisa Hywood - founder of the Tikki Hywood Foundation - another OAT supported project. The primates remained at this facility until the necessary paperwork was obtained to repatriate them to DRC. Sadly, the administrative process took 4 months and 4 of them didn't survive, but the good news is that 29 are now back in DRC and thanks to experienced carers at the JACK sanctuary they are well on their way to being rehabilitated. Once this process is completed, they will be returned to the wilds of DRC where they belong.
JACK specialise in the rehabilitation of chimpanzees, which is very different from primate rehabilitation and in order to receive the 29 primates they needed to build specific enclosures and accommodation. With funding from OAT and others, they managed to build this facility in record time.
What JACK does
Stop the illegal trade of apes and primates throughout the country by enforcing laws on wildlife
Give the confiscated orphans a decent refuge with all the needed love and care
Release rehabilitated orphans back in the wild
Funding for a primate specific rehabilitation facility
Funding to assist with costs associated with rescue
How Olsen Animal Trust helps
Project Images - hover over for details
Large primate rescue
Baby chimp caught up in illegal wildlife trade - fortunately for him he was rescued and is now in rehabilitation with JACK.
New OAT enclosures
After an illegal trade of 29 primates of varying species was intercepted in Zimbabwe OAT agreed to fund the construction of bespoke rehabilitation enclosures at JACK sanctuary in DRC.
Rescued primate enjoying a treat
Now safety back in DRC from where they were stolen. A long road of rehab ahead but at least they have been given a second chance of returning to the wild.
OATOKE meeting resident chimps
OATOKE getting to know resident chimps in rehab during his visit to JACK in DRC.
OATOKE with rescued baby chimp
Comfort and reassurance are a crucial part of the rehabilitation process, especially with very young chimps and primates.
OATOKE with project founders
OATOKE spent time with Roxanne and Franck, getting to know the project they founded and continue to passionately develop together.
Tethered 'vehicle guard'
Prior to rescue this poor primate was chained to a vehicle by its owner and was serving as a deterrent to potential thieves.
Baby chimp confiscation
Following investigations a baby chimp was confiscated from illegal wildlife trader, now in rehab at J.A.C.K.
Life on a chain
Illegally kept primate chained for life until J.A.C.K came to the resuce.
OATOKE to the rescue
After a life in chain Dave, our OATOKE participated in the rescue of this poor primate who was being kept illegally.
Chained prisoner rescued
Sadly baby chimps are sought after as they are highly valuable in the illegal wildlife market hence being kept under lock and key pending sale. Fortunately this one was rescued by J.A.C.K.
Surrogate mum Roxanne
Baby chimps are incredibly traumatised when taken away from their mothers by poachers. When rescued surrogate parenting is a vital part of their rehabilitation process.