old socks, great enrichment!

We do a lot of recycling at J.A.C.K. as we lack plenty of things here in Southern DRC.

So, the new enrichment tool we introduced several months ago is…old socks filled up with treats (raisins, fruit, cereals) and hidden or hung on the different playgrounds!

Most of the chimps like these recycled items – especially Maïka & Elia who have become great sock experts! See by yourself :)

=> Filling the socks and displaying them on the playgrounds

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 => chimps enjoying their enrichment tools








and… ELIA!




Mata enjoying the forest

As mentioned previously, baby Mata goes now every day at the Sanctuary where he can enjoy life in the forest with his surrogate mom, Maman Angeline. Here are the first pictures of Mata climbing trees – he’s a real expert and he really likes to discover new experiences. Soon he’ll be introduced to Luna & Kaly – more pictures will come…






2 new steps for baby Mata

Mata is doing fine and is slowly recovering from all the trauma he went through before arriving at J.A.C.K.  He is eating well, has put on weight but has however  lost a lot of hair probably because of the bad conditions he had been kept in a few months ago. His fur is now hopefuly growing back, which is a good sign!!


Maman Angeline is taking good care of him. Mata has become extremely playful with more selfconfidence than before: he doesn’t want to have naps any more as he wants to play and play and play all the time!!

DSC08438 This is the reason why we decided Mata would spend his days at J.A.C.K. We can feel he is ready for new experiences and being at J.A.C.K. is important since he can see, hear and smell the others. Mata vocalises a lot when he hears the other chimpanzees but he also shouts on the big noisy ones!!  This is a new step for him which makes him understand he isn’t alone! Angeline regularly takes him for walks through the forest and Mata keeps on watching and observing each and everything! 2014-06-19-1517 Another good thing is that Mata now likes to drink milk (he refused milk for nearly 3 weeks!) and to have a milkbottle with a teet (which he also refused several weeks ago!). However, there is still a little problem: Mata  can’t hold his botlle in his hands and has found a Plan B  : he lays the bottle on the table  to drink his fruit juice very easily! Very clever, Mata! 06 - juin4 Maman Angeline is doing great too and she is happy to be with the team again at J.A.C.K.! Her body isn’t sore any more and she is just as fit as before – a real miracle!!! DSC08441

cold is back

The last time we talked about flu and keeping the chimp indoors was because of the heavy rains we had several months ago.

This time, temperatures are dropping down terribly (especially at night and early in the morning) which keeps on reminding us we also have ‘Winter’ here in Africa! Day temperatures vary between 28° & 32° C, but, just to give you an idea, feeding time two days ago at 7.30 am was at 11° Celsius… Some chimps are sick, the most fragile ones : Tommy, Nalia, Ekolo, Luna and baby Kaly who are all in quarantine because of flu!

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The littles ones have particular attention and care. Valentin, their keeper, checks their temperatures 3 times/day and provides special food and enrichment for them. This morning, he collected wild figs which they loved!


Hopefuly, the little  chimps are still very playful although sick and we hope situation will remain like this as the month of July is usually the coldest!

JACK growing education centre

Thanks to the generosity of two main donors, the International Primate Protection League and the ARCUS Foundation, J.A.C.K. has been given the opportunity to continue the works of developping  its education centre.

Today, the education area  is made of 4 hut-shaped-education buildings; each hut has a particular topic related to Conservation and to Chimpanzees.

educ centre

Education hut #1 enumerates the threats great apes are facingevery day (habitat destruction, bushmeat trade, exotic pet trade, diseases)  and what international/national solutions are brought to help save them;

education 1

Education hut #2 explains what a sanctuary is and why/how chimpanzee orphans arrive at J.A.C.K. A small puppet theater is attached to the building where kids can create their own conservation stories. This is the building that perished totally during the arson of September 2013 and which was totally restored.

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Education hut #3 gives a general idea of monkeys  and shows the difference between monkeys and great apes.

education hut 3

Education hut #4 talks about chimpanzees mainly: habitat, anatomy, behaviour, reproduction, food, using and building tools….


 All these wonderful constructions wouldn’t have been possible without the trust of IPPL and of the Arcus Foundation and that’s why we again and again wish to thank both institutions for their attention and their wish to be part of the survival of South DRC chimpanzees.

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Thank YOU for THEM !




haysacks for J.A.C.K.

A good friend of J.A.C.K., Corine, has just offered our sanctuary about 200 sacks of hay she had previously cut for her horse. Corine mentioned the hay had no more nutriments for her horse (too dry & too old) and because she knew we offer our hairy friends fresh and dry grass every day so that they can build their nests, she gave us all the hay she had left in her shed.


The chimps of course were extremely surprised to see such quality of bedding but it didn’t take long before they started building their nests!


Last night, baby Kaly apparently found the hay extremely comfortable to sit on and to have her last meal of the day before sleeping…


As previously said, it’s winter here and this wonderful donation will keep the chimps warm at night!

 Many thanks, Corine, for caring so much about THEM !

DSC08337-001 J.A.C.K.

natural yummy treats to come!

J.A.C.K. is located on the land of the Lubumbashi Zoo not far from the city centre.

On the few hectares that have been allocated to the Sanctuary by DRC Ministry of the Environment, J.A.C.K. has started growing vegetables (green garden) as well as some fruit trees (paw paw, guava, banana, advocadoes, lemon, wild grapes) but it also has a small surrounding natural forest which is being preserved and highly protected by the sanctuary since J.A.C.K. wants to keep its endemic bush and trees. Some of these do produce a lot of wild fruit for the chimps, which is fantastic!

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African winter has just started (12°C/53°F) and we are eager to see the winter fruit ripen very soon to please our hairy friends: bananas, paw paws, but also wild grapes and figs are on the coming menu and we are convinced the chimps will be extremely happy! So, in a near future, we will offer the chimps plenty of yummy treats which are produced naturally without any chemical products!

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enrichment thanks to Gladys!

Gladys is a goood friend of J.A.C.K. We met her last year here in Lubumbashi and we offered her the possibility to come and help us bring daily enrichment to our dear hairy friends.

Now that Gladys is back home in Europe, she absolutely wanted to be part of the enrichment programm and she offered the chimps balls, almonds and raisins.

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Since she has worked in the enrichment program of J.A.C.K., Gladys knows exactly what the chimps’ favourite treats are! That’s why she sent us some wonderful items which, of course, the chimps really enjoyed and loved!

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Merci beaucoup, Gladys, for this particular attention! We know you love THEM and we really want to thank YOU for the moments of happiness and joy you have given the chimps thanks to  your enrichment items!!!


good news for today!

Yes, see by yourself on the picture below: Maman Angeline is back!!  We were all too excited having her back with us and even baby Mata panthooted in surprise and happiness. He immediately recognised his surrogate mom – Maman Angeline seemed emotionaly affected of this welcome and thanked us more than 20 times for all the good care and for all the love she had received during the last 3 weeks… She was convinced she was going to die and is so thankful to JACK and its supporters, friends and team members for all they did to help her go through these painful moments….


Also, another good news is that yesterday, in a few minutes, JACK reached the 500 Euros needed to cover all the expenses of Maman Angeline’s care in hospital and for the different drugs and treatments she has had so far (painkillers, physio, etc). But J.A.C.K. got more than expected: instead of 500 Euros, the Sanctuary received 653 Euros which is more than we had predicted and this to the kind generosity of a good friend of J.A.C.K., Chantal J, and of Candy D.M. who has been following us for so long from the States and who does her best to help!


Many thanks to all of you who supported us finacially but also emotionaly during these hard times. It’s been good having you around :)

 Thank YOU again for Maman Angeline!!!


nearly 80 % reached!

Yes, dear Friends, thanks to the wonderful kindness of four more donnors, our fundraising is now reaching about 80% !



Many thanks to Cherie B, Kelly J, Marie-Odile R and to Carole R for their wish to help us in these tough times. Angeline’s progress is positive and she still needs 3 more sessions of physiotherapy. Doctors say she’ll be able to come back soon at the Sanctuary… so let’s keep our positive thoughts going on and let’s pray she’ll be completely OK very soon!!!