Located just 15 km outside Nelspruit, The Jane Goodall Institute: Chimp Eden is a Chimpanzee Sanctuary with the main goal of housing Chimpanzees and also to educate and close the gap between man and Chimp. Chimp Eden is located in the Umhloti Nature Reserve and makes a perfect environment for the chimps to live. Chimpanzees are a very endangered species and is currently on the IUCN Red List (International Union for Conservation of Nature) and is listed in Appendix 1 of the CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora). Chimpanzees are the closest relative to humans and could become extinct in the next 10 – 20 years if efforts aren’t done to improve the numbers.
The main goal of Chimp Eden is the rescuing of Chimpanzees that have survived the bush meat trade, that were rescued from illegal pet trading, that were traumatized by circus, strip club and beach resorts as entertainment objects or that have been orphaned. The Chimps at Chimp Eden are the lucky ones who live their lives free from the dangers of the outside world. They are cared for and are provided with the necessary attention they need to recover. The Chimps spend their lives in a semi- wild environment and are socially active with other members in their groups. There are 3 groups of Chimpanzees in three different enclosures at the Sanctuary. There are viewing platforms and viewpoints overlooking the forest and the foraging areas so the volunteers and visitors can study and observe the Chimps.
The jane Goodall Institute was founded in 1977 that continues the pioneering work of Dr. Jane Goodall about the lives of Chimpanzees and the interaction between human an animal. The Chimpanzee Sanctuary is a proud and important member of the Jane Goodall Institute which is a world leader in the Effort to preserve and conserve the species and habitats of Chimpanzee. The Jane Goodall Institute is very committed in education through public tours, the education centre, the volunteer programme and school tours. The Chimpanzee Sanctuary’s outreach programme, to educate the community about sustainability issues and chimpanzees, is assisted by funding from The Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund. The JGI works in a very close collaboration with GRASP (Great Apes Survival Partnership) in the education of all the involved communities and stakeholders’ distress of endangered apes.