Virunga National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Virunga National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

2017
07.31.2018
Rangers Project
On #WorldRangerDay, we are so proud of the efforts of our rangers, who show dedication and resilience, despite the dangers they face.

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07.22.2018
Ephrem Balole, Manager of Virunga SARL, receives his PhD
Congratulations to Ephrem Balole, Manager of Virunga SARL, who received his PhD from the University of Kinshasa last week! Ephrem has been r...

Explore EPHREM BALOLE, MANAGER OF VIRUNGA SARL, RECEIVES HIS PHD

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06.06.2018
Rangers Project
We are so proud that Jolie, one of Virunga’s female rangers, shared her story of what motivated her to become a ranger at the European Devel...

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06.05.2018
Fallen Rangers Project
Representatives from the Rumangabo Widows sewing workshop attended the European Development Days conference in Brussels, where they showcase...

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05.31.2018
Virunga coffee launches!
One for the coffee fans out there: every purchase of Higher Grounds' Kawa Kanzururu Coffee goes towards supporting the development work of V...

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05.31.2018
Rangers Project
We are so delighted to share the news that the mountain gorilla population has surpassed 1000! Incredible news for Virunga and incredible news for conservation, and testament to the continued work of Virunga's Rangers in ensuring the protection of the species.

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02.13.2018
Fallen Rangers Fund
Children of the fallen Rangers playing in the child care center at the widows workshop! On-site child care reduces the initial stressors tha...

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12.05.2017
Fallen Rangers Fund
A total of 68 widows and 190 children of fallen Rangers, are now, thanks to the Fallen Rangers Fund, being offered financial support, education, and meaningful employment.

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09.11.2017
Rangers Project
Today, Park Rangers along with the Gorilla Doctors team successfully located the Rugendo group and removed a deadly snare from the arm of yo...

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07.30.2017
Rangers Project
Happy World Ranger Day! We are extremely proud and grateful to all our Rangers. These men and women are deeply committed to Virunga and ensu...

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07.29.2017
Rangers Project
Last week marked the completion of 5 months of incredibly tough training for Virunga's newest Rangers. 6500 applied, 81 made it through.

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01.12.2017
Fallen Rangers Fund
A beautiful selection of napkins made by the widows of fallen Rangers are on sale at Mikeno Lodge.

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Photo Credit: Brent Stirton; Logo Credit: Jib Limited

Photo Credit: Adam Kiefer; Logo Credit: Jib Limited

Photo credit: Brent Stirton; Logo credit: Jib Limited

Virunga

Photo credit: Brent Stirton; Logo credit: Jib Limited

Photo credit: Orlando von Einsiedel

Photo credit: Brent Stirton; Logo credit: Jib Limited

Explore Africa’s oldest and most biologically diverse protected area

Unlike anywhere else in the world, Virunga National Park contains some of the greatest national treasures on earth

About Virunga

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Stability through sustainable development in the eastern Congo

The Virunga Alliance is working to create an alternative economy that enables surrounding communities to benefit from the National Park

Virunga Alliance

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Meet the heroes who risk their lives to protect the Park’s wildlife and local communities

Rangers’ work is critical to the stability of the Park and the safety of the lives that surround it

Rangers Project

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Join our virtual fitness challenge.

Virunga has over 700 men and women who serve as rangers to protect Africa's oldest and most biologically diverse protected area and the communities and livelihoods that depend on it.

Virunga Ranger Challenge

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Virunga National Park warns of increased poaching threat


Today, 13th July 2020, Virunga National Park warns of an increase in poaching following the discovery of a baby gorilla, Theodore, caught in a snare within the park. This follows alarming reports of increased poaching activity across several African countries since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis.


The level of poaching at Virunga National Park has reduced in recent years as a result of effective anti-poaching operations undertaken by Virunga National Park’s rangers in partnership with the local communities. But the impact of coronavirus has put a strain on resources, including the loss of revenue due to the closure of tourism activities, and hampered the park’s ability to protect the gorillas and other species that reside at Virunga.


Virunga National Park is now planning to undertake a large scale sweep of the park, in conjunction with the local communities, to locate and remove any snares and secure the habitats of the endangered mountain gorilla population and other wildlife.


Emmanuel De Merode, Director of Virunga National Park, said:


“Signs of an increase in poaching are extremely worrying. We took the decision to suspend tourism activities to protect both the mountain gorilla population and the local communities from the threat of transmission of the disease, but the coronavirus crisis is leading to a shortage of resources that puts the gorillas at the mercy of poachers and increasingly threatens the livelihoods of local people.”


For more information please contact press@virunga.org and to support Virunga’s rangers to tackle the threat of poaching, please visit www.virunga.org/donate


Notes to Editor:__


The Virunga National Park (Parc National des Virunga), in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, is 7,800-square-kilometres (3,000 sq mi) stretching from the Virunga Mountains in the South, to the Rwenzori Mountains in the North, bordering Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda and Rwenzori Mountains National Park and Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda.


The park was established in 1925 as Africa's first national park and is a UNESCO-designated World Heritage Site since 1979. In recent years poaching and the Congo Civil War have seriously damaged its wildlife population. The park is managed by the Congolese National Park Authorities, the Institut Congolais pour la Conservation de la Nature (ICCN) and its partner the Virunga Foundation.


The Institut Congolais pour la Conservation de la Nature (ICCN) is a Congolese governmental partner tasked with the protection and conservation of the Virunga National Park and Kahuzi-Biega National Park, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Members of the ICCN are charged with the overall protection of the parks and the endangered Mountain Gorilla.