Ian’s Birthday Gifts

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We are so grateful to the Lundin family for holding a fundraiser to support the mountain gorillas of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in honor of Ian Lundin’s 60th birthday on 12th September 2020. I met Virginia and Ian Lundin in 2017 through Speke Holiday Safaris where they stayed at Clouds Lodge in the Nkuringo sector. It was wonderful  to take the Lundins to see the endangered mountain gorillas and share our work at Conservation Through Public Health, where we are keeping gorillas healthy and their habitats secure by improving the health of gorillas, and the health and livelihoods of local communities who they share their fragile habitat with.

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted many lives including the local communities who are hungry and desperate, owing to the absence of tourism, and sadly the gorillas have also been affected. Tragically, Rafiki, the lead silverback of Nkuringo gorilla group was killed by a poacher who speared him when setting snares for duiker and bushpigs to feed his family. The donations from  Ian’s birthday gifts will be used to improve gorilla monitoring through disease surveillance and camera traps, and the well being of local communities through providing them with fast growing crops, reducing their need to enter the gorillas’ forest habitat and  putting them at risk from human disease and injuries. We would like to thank Ian and Virginia very much for all this great support.

Our trip to Uganda in 2017 and the amazing experience spending time with the mountain gorillas with Dr. Gladys was probably one of the most touching and fulfilling experiences of our lives- these gentle giants who live on leaves, roots and bark are not-so-distant relatives of ours and we have a moral duty to protect them from extinction - we urge all of you to visit the gorillas at least once in your life - you will not regret it.
Ian Lundin

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