DRC Civil Society Conservation Review: Urgent Actions Needed to Save Virunga National Park in 2019

As we begin the new year of 2019, we, the member organizations of the Synergy of Ecologists for Peace and Development, regret to draw a mixed assessment for the conservation of Virunga National Park during the year 2018. Indeed, the good news is that with the combined efforts of local communities – governmental conservation institutions… Read More

2019 Virunga Resolution #4 : Protecting Environmental Rights Defenders in Their Work

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has experienced significant conflict, including long spates of civil war (1996-2003) also involving neighbouring States, and political and ethnic conflict regionally which continues today. The ongoing conflict has led to the mass internal displacement of over 4.5 million people, predominantly from the Kasaï, Tanganyika and Kivu regions, with… Read More

Virunga Human Rights Day: We Stand up for our Rights and the Right of a Healthy Environment

“I dream of our vast deserts, of our forests, of all our great wildernesses. We must never forget that it is our duty to protect this environment.” — Nelson Mandela. On December 10th  we commemorate  Human Rights Day, the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This… Read More

Virunga Rangers Project: Meet the Heroes Who Risk their Lives to Protect the Park and Communities

Visit Virunga National Park New Website and Page dedicated to the Ranger Project & DONATE ! Here below a small preview: Virunga’s Rangers stand fearlessly on the frontline of conservation for the protection of the park’s wildlife, natural resources, and for the surrounding communities. They routinely face harsh physical conditions, injury, or even death. In the… Read More

Virunga Rangers: Last Wo-Men Standing and Upholding the Law

On average one Virunga National Park ranger is killed every month trying to protect the endangered animals living in this part of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Poaching in central Africa has turned into a war in which heavily armed militia target elephants, rhinos and gorillas. The years of conflict have also added to the… Read More

Good News for Virunga: UN moves towards Recognising Human Right to a Healthy Environment

Formal recognition would help protect those who increasingly risk their lives to defend the land, water, forests and wildlife, says the UN special rapporteur on human rights and the environment. By Jonathan Watts Global environment editor It is time for the United Nations to formally recognise the right to a healthy environment, according to the… Read More

Creating a Movement of Resistance – part I : Building Trust and Understanding between Pygmy Peoples and Virunga Rangers

Marginalised for decades, Pygmy peoples are fighting for recognition and land rights. Even the term ‘pygmy’ is laced with historical racism and prejudice; they are not treated as equal citizens in their home country. At the heart of pygmy culture is their forest, central to their spiritual beliefs, and ancestral heritage it is also their source… Read More

Hot off the Press : Land Grabbing and Illegal Distribution of Land in Virunga National Park

Virunga National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, on the border of Uganda and Rwanda. Virunga is Africa’s oldest national park and is also the continent’s most biologically diverse protected area. The park’s 7800 square kilometers (3000 square miles) includes forests, savannas, lava plains, swamps, erosion valleys,… Read More

Beautiful Congo, Unique Virunga: A Story with a Human Face

Discover Virunga and DR-Congo like you never did.  Follow the story of the people living in and around Virunga National Park through the lens of Spanish Photographer and Filmmaker: Ramón Sánchez Orense IN Virunga in 35 mm For more work from R. Sanchez Orense HERE

Virunga: The most Dangerous Job in Africa

DRC, the continent’s beautiful and precarious heart, sits once again upon a ticking bomb. 19 JUN 2015 00:00 TONY WEAVER It is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. And one of the most tragic. It is that corner of Africa where Rwanda, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo come together. Straddling… Read More

1.000 Reasons to Save Virunga: #37 Back in Time with FZS

Here are some old photographs of the Frankfurt Zoological Society that has provided support to Virunga since the 1950s. FZS has been involved in biodiversity conservation in the Virunga ecosystem since Bernhard Grzimek visited the park in the 1950s. In the 1980s, FZS supported the very first habituation of mountain gorillas for tourism, and eventually, for… Read More

SEPT 4, 2014: Global Witness investigates SOCO’s Oil Exploration Activities in Virunga

‘Drillers in the mist’: How secret payments and a climate of violence helped UK firm open African national park to oil British oil company Soco Internationaland its contractors havemade illicit payments, appear to have paid off armed rebels and benefited from fear and violence fostered by government security forces in eastern Congo, as they sought… Read More