Kisoro School donation and another successful gorilla trip

Kisoro School donation and another successful gorilla trip

Posted by James Whiteman on 7th Jan 2013

By all accounts from those involved, November's Great Gorilla Project went brilliantly, with some spectacular wildlife viewing twinned with important community work. As part of Our Sponsorship Promise on the trip we were extremely glad to hand over a cheque to the Kisoro Demonstration School for 10,000,000 Ugandan shillings, which is enough to sponsor 22 disabled children through school with school dinners for the next 12 months! We hope this is the first of many giant cheques we get to give to the school and we owe a huge thanks to all the volunteers who opted for us to donate to the school on their behalf. At a school with very little funding we know that this funding will have a huge impact on the children's future.

On each of our gorilla tours we take a group of children from this school to Mgahinga National Park, this is a popular place for wildlife viewing, and allows the opportunity to educate the children about protecting wildlife and the amazing animals they have on their door step.

The group of children we take to the national park is varied, this time we took 2 blind children, 2 deaf children and an able bodied child. The new and vivid coloured flowers and the impressive scenery of the bamboo forest could be seen on the excited faces of the three deaf children, whereas the blind children were able to touch and smell things they had never been around before such as placing the hand of a blind boy in the footprint of an elephant so they could get an idea of the astounding size.

As for wildlife spotting, the November group successfully saw both the Mishaya and the Kahungye gorilla groups whilst out gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Both groups were as entertaining as ever, allowing the volunteers to get some good photographic evidence of their success. There is honestly nothing quite like seeing these majestic animals in the wild, their soft vocalisations and their gently nature and of course no trip would be complete without seeing the powerful silverback. Sightings have definitely improved in the last few years, further evidence of the recent population increases within the park.

After all the of the community work the volunteers put in, we whisked them away for a visit to famous Queen Elizabeth National Park. Here we went on game drives, boat cruises along the Channel and a trek to see the wild chimpanzees.

The most amazing wildlife opportunities actually took place at the accommodation. On the first night the elephants were crowded around the porch, on the second a lion made a kill and the volunteers were able to watch from the window. On the final night we had to wait for some hippos to move on from munching the grass before we could even get in our front door!

This year's gorilla trips are booking up fast with places left only on the second Great Gorilla Project with Ian Redmond - fittingly this year being the 25th anniversary of the release of Gorillas in the Mist - and on the just released dates for November's Great Gorilla Project which we will be running from November 18th to December 1st.


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