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: David Shepard

Photo Credit: Adam Kiefer; Logo Credit: David Shepard

Photo credit: Brent Stirton; Logo credit: David Shepard

Photo credit: Brent Stirton; Logo credit: David Shepard

Photo credit: Orlando von Einsiedel

Photo credit: Brent Stirton; Logo credit: David Shepard

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

Learn more

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

Learn more

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

Learn more

Meet the orphan gorillas of Virunga’s Senkwekwe Center

The world’s only sanctuary caring for mountain gorillas separated from their families by poaching or conflict

Gorilla Orphan Project

Learn more

August 14, 2018
Park News

Virunga National Park ends 2015 with an energy milestone

Virunga National park is still beaming with pride after celebrating a major milestone in the development of the Virunga Alliance.

Photo Credit: Brent Stirton

Yesterday, Virunga National Park welcomed His Excellency President Joseph Kabila Kabange to inaugurate Matebe Hydroelectric Plant in Rutshuru, turning on the electric for the very first time.


His Excellency was joined by long-standing partners of the Virunga Alliance, the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, the Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature (ICCN), the European Union and the Virunga Foundation.


Also in attendance were honourable dignitaries from the Congolese Government including seven cabinet ministers as well as official representatives from the European Union, British, American and Belgian governments.


Matebe Power Station is set to produce 13.6 MW of clean electricity, kickstarting the green economy and over 12,000 sustainable jobs for people in and around the region of Rutshuru. Park communities and dignitaries celebrated this milestone in the history of the region, further demonstrating a commitment to clean, sustainable development through the park’s public-private initiative, the Virunga Alliance.

Having overcome the difficulties of delivering on a project of this scale in just two years, we have proven that projects like Matebe can be built in Congo to the same high standards as anywhere in world

Emmanuel de Merode
Virunga National Park’s Director

Yesterday’s inauguration of Matebe followed that of Mutwanga, a pilot hydroelectric project that has already enriched the local economy in Beni and acted as a catalyst for the largest soap factory in eastern Congo, as well as a papaya enzyme production company. At over 30 times the size of Mutwanga, Matebe offers huge potential to scale up on this impact.


The inaugurations of Matebe and Mutwanga mark just the beginning of a further set of energy projects set to develop eastern Congo. Howard G. Buffett has committed a further $39 million USD towards the cost of completing two more hydroelectric plants in the region of North Kivu under the umbrella of the Virunga Alliance.


After the inauguration ceremony, His Excellency President Joseph Kabila Kabange visited the Mikeno Lodge at Virunga National Park’s headquarters in Rumangabo. Whilst there, he paid a visit to the famous orphaned mountain gorillas at the Senkwekwe Centre. Mikeno Lodge is also at the centre of Virunga National Park’s tourism industry – offering a retreat for tourists visiting the park from all over the world – representing another pillar of the Virunga Alliance.

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Join the Effort to Protect Virunga National Park

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