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On the true meaning of hope. JACK, one year later

As Jane Goodall wrote in “The Book of Hope: A Survival Guide For Trying Times”, hope is often misunderstood and conceived as passive. True hope is precisely the opposite; it requires action and commitment.

Written by Susana Pataro, Global Chair of the JGI Advocacy Committee

Roxane Coutenier and Franck Chantereaux, the directors of JACK Congo sanctuary, are the embodiment of hope and a model of resilience. When, in 2006, they realised that to stop the illegal trafficking of chimpanzees on the streets of Lubumbashi, DRC, it was necessary to create a sanctuary, they launched the project and promptly ran into major obstacles. The most dramatic was an arson attack that resulted in the death of two infants, Jak and Touzo, from severe burns in September 2006.

Tragedy does not stop their efforts; they remain committed to chimpanzees and to the DRC. They continued with the project, and JACK is recognised by the Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature (ICCN) and an official association for rehabilitating Congolese wildlife, and also a member of PASA.

Seventeen years later, tragedy again knocked on JACK’s door. On September 9, 2022, three babies recently recovered from illegal trafficking, Cesar, Monga, and Hussein, were abducted early in the morning. It seems that organised crime was involved and is a strong presence.

A year later, the crime remains unsolved. The whereabouts of the three babies and their condition are unknown, whilst the criminal design behind the abduction have not been identified.

JACK Congo nevertheless continues to work tirelessly on other rescues, currently housing 144 primates.

The story of Caesar, Monga, and Hussein shook the world. A petition has been circulating for some months, and we hope that it helps the story of the three babies to continue to spread, keeping their memory and our demand for justice alive. Please consider signing it and spreading the word. Nothing can be worse than apathy.

Bring the chimps back home: https://www.change.org/p/bringthechimpsbackhome

Headline image credit: Susana Pataro (with permission)

Photo: Jane Goodall Institute Global
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