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The Jane Goodall Institute does not endorse handling, interacting or close proximity to chimpanzees or other wildlife.
These are historical images that cannot be shown outside the original context.
The Jane Goodall Institute Australia (JGIA) is a truly holistic conservation organisation that is part of a worldwide organisation with a presence in over 30 countries, leading on projects in their local communities.
Roots & Shoots Australia is also part of a global grassroots youth movement, with almost 700,000 active young members, in over 7,100 groups, in more than 50 countries.
JGIA’s purpose is to 'Inspire actions that connect people with animals and our shared environment' and this is exemplified in our logo. We started with our founder Dr. Jane Goodall and have a flagship animal of the chimpanzee, but our projects focus on protecting the broader environment and the communities surrounding the chimp habitats.
In the summer of 1960, 26-year-old Jane Goodall arrived on the shore of Lake Tanganyika in East Africa to study the area’s wild chimpanzee population. Although at the time it was unheard of for a woman to venture into the African wilderness, Jane persisted as the trip meant the fulfillment of her childhood dream. Jane’s work in Tanzania would prove to be more successful than anyone could have possibly imagined.
In October 1960 Jane observed two chimps, David Graybeard and Goliath, striping leaves off twigs in order to make tools for fishing termites from a nest. This was truly a ground breaking moment for science as until that moment scientists thought that only humans were capable of making and using tools. In fact, humans were known as “man the tool maker”. This discovery lead to one of Jane’s many accolades “the woman who redefined man”.
Building on Dr. Jane Goodall’s pioneering research at Gombe Stream Research Centre, we continue learning about wild chimpanzee populations and leading ground-breaking research on mandrills and other primates.
Jane’s love of animals started at a very young age from bringing earthworms into her bedroom as a toddler to hiding in a henhouse to find out how eggs are laid. But of course it was when famed anthropologist Louis Leakey asked her to go to Tanzania to study wild chimpanzees when the ground breaking discoveries started. As not only our closest living relatives, but also an umbrella species, by saving chimpanzees and their habitat, we are also saving thousands of other species in the ecosystem.
Did you know that all great apes are now endangered? Poachers kill thousands of chimpanzees and other great apes each year for the illegal bushmeat trade and sell infants into the entertainment or pet industries. JGIA works to end the illegal commercial wildlife trade through education and awareness programs in local communities and by working with governments to change policies.
To help the young, orphaned victims of poaching, our Chimp Guardian program funds the care of more than 150 chimpanzees at JGI’s Tchimpounga Sanctuary. This safe haven in the Republic of Congo is where rescued orphans from the black market can get needed care and attention.
Finding a way to protect the environment of chimpanzees and other great apes will always remain at the heart of our mission. We work to restore healthy habitats through community-centred conservation, education and achieving sustainable solutions where people, animals, and their habitats can all thrive. In Australia we campaign to raise awareness about sustainable palm oil and the value of recycling mobile phones.
JGIA has joined forces with NGOs across the country as signatories of the Responsible Palm Oil Network. Our network is helping to break the link between palm oil production and deforestation, climate pollution and human rights abuses through educating and empowering consumers and those involved in the supply chain, to take actions that support the transition towards a truly responsible palm oil industry.
The mining of coltan, a mineral used in electronics, poses a substantial threat to African great apes. Mining results in the clearing of habitat in coltan-rich areas where chimpanzees live. We reduce the impact of mining on great apes by removing mobile phones from the waste stream and reusing or recycling the phones, and the coltan that they contain. Simply by collecting old, even broken, phones at your school, community or workplace, we can reduce the demand for coltan mining in critical chimpanzee and gorilla habitat.
As one of the first truly holistic charities, we have long-since recognised that protecting chimpanzees and their habitat can no longer remain separate from the task of improving the human condition. Rapidly increasing destruction of forests and the pressures of growing populations mean that reaching individual farmers and villagers is the key to conservation success.
Dr Jane Goodall also found that amazing changes happen when people feel empowered to make a difference. It’s these tangible local successes that give people reason for hope and cause them to take actions for a better world. That’s why we work to build the capacity of rural communities in chimpanzee range countries, to be self-sustaining in ways that enable them to prosper economically and culturally, while protecting the natural resources on which their long-term prosperity depends.
We apply this approach across multiple sectors, notably with our Peer Education Program. The program funds young girls to stay in school as well as equipping them with information on health and life skills. They then teach these lessons to their peers, thereby building youth leaders who have the skills and tools to initiate community projects to help animals, people and the environment.
At JGIA, our philosophy is centered on the interconnectedness of Animals, People and the Environment (APE) and our Purpose is to "inspire actions that connect people with animals and our shared environment".
We work to promote the conservation of chimpanzees and other great apes in Africa as well as protect their environment and local communities. We also recognise that in order to help the chimpanzees in Africa, we need to harness the sense of empowerment right here in Australia.
To do this, we support hundreds of vibrant youth-led initiatives as part of our Roots & Shoots program at schools and community groups throughout the country. From raising palm oil awareness, to adopting chimpanzees, to recycling mobile phones to creating their own inspired projects, we aim to empower the next generation to be socially and environmentally conscious citizens of our shared planet.