JGI also works with local communities and authorities to help prevent future trafficking using what we call "the Triangle Approach.” This approach relies on effective interplay between three entities: JGI’s environmental education programs, law enforcement, and sanctuaries.
Environmental Education aims to grow awareness about great apes, their role in the local ecosystems, and about the laws against keeping chimpanzees as pets or being hunted as bushmeat. Once individuals are made aware of this information, they will be more likely to speak up when they see an illegal activity that affects local wildlife, such as a neighbour keeping an infant chimpanzee as a pet.
By working with conscientious community members, local law enforcement is in a much better place to uphold the laws surrounding illegal wildlife trafficking. Once alerted to the presence of a chimpanzee being kept as a pet or attraction, law enforcement officials are then able to seize the chimpanzee, and charge the owner with a crime if one has been committed. But confiscation requires a place for the chimpanzee to be housed and cared for.
By giving law enforcement a safe place to take a confiscated chimpanzee, JGI’s Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center, Chimp Eden and other sanctuaries help ensure that chimpanzees are not forced to languish in solitary confinement as an exotic pet or worse.
Partnership and communication between these three entities allow JGI to stop trafficking from every angle.
JGI is also a leader in collaborative strategic planning for the wellbeing of chimpanzees. In January 2020 JGI joined PASA and other partners in the launch of Action for Chimpanzees to curtail the illicit trade of western chimpanzees. We hope you are inspired to support our work and to help keep chimps ForeverWild!