About the South Africa Chimpanzee Sanctuary Project
The goal of this sanctuary is to improve the global understanding and treatment of great apes through research, public education and advocacy. The Jane Goodall Chimpanzee Sanctuary is home to rescued chimpanzees that have survived the bushmeat trade. Others have been orphaned and were traded in the illegal pet trade to zoos, circuses and medical research facilities. These chimps are the lucky ones, living out their lives in a risk-free environment. They are provided with the necessary attention to recover from the trauma that they have experienced. The chimpanzees spend their days in semi-wild enclosures that are similar to their natural forested habitat. The enclosures have viewpoints overlooking the forest and ‘foraging areas’ from which volunteers can observe and study the chimpanzees.
As a volunteer, you will be involved in the following activities, depending on the needs of the sanctuary at the time of your stay;
- Work on behavioural enrichment activities for the chimpanzees (especially when they are confined due to weather or other reasons).
- Maintenance tasks for the volunteer compound, and other work that the animal keepers and staff need to have done.
- Introduction lecture by the “Chimp whisperer” aka Primate Manager, Stany.
- Observe the chimpanzees when one may be sick, injured, or behaving oddly–to report findings to the sanctuary manager.
- Sort donated food for the chimpanzees as well as chop fruit for tours.
- Help out with the general growth of the sanctuary – in whatever tasks may need help at the time.
- Help with crowd control during public tours.
Please Note: For the safety, health and wellbeing of the chimpanzees and volunteers, there will be no direct physical contact with any chimpanzee, and safety rules must be strictly adhered to. Read more about our ethical volunteering policy here.