Volunteer With Gorillas

Gorillas are perhaps one of the most fascinating species to walk the Earth. Their likeness to humans is uncanny, with displays of laughter and sadness, and employing tools found within the jungle to assist with life in the forest. This comes as no surprise given that they share 98% of our DNA, however, instead of protecting our forest cousins, human impact poses many threats to gorilla populations across the globe.

By joining a gorilla volunteer project, you can play your part in the protection of these enchanting great apes, by encouraging responsible tourism and educating local communities on how, they too, can help.

Gorillas are vital components of the ecosystem, as they spread seeds throughout the forest from the foods they consume and make gaps in the trees which in turn allows sunlight to shine through, helping the jungle to thrive. Additionally, protecting gorilla habitat, in turn, safeguards indigenous communities living in the same forests as gorillas, as their homes are often impacted by habitat destruction. The preservation of gorilla habitat also has global benefits, for example, moisture produced from The Congo Basin jungle falls as rain in the US, so the depletion of these areas has drastic effects across the entire planet.

Volunteering with gorillas is a truly remarkable experience, as you get to witness these magical animals in their natural habitat, as well as help local communities to thrive and coexist with the apes in harmony. The Great Projects’ exclusive gorilla volunteer project cannot be replicated anywhere else in the world, so what are you waiting for? Secure a place to volunteer with gorillas today!

Gorillas At A Glance

ENDANGERED STATUS
Endangered
NUMBER REMAINING IN THE WILD
100,000 In Total
ENDEMIC REGION
Africa

How Endangered Are Gorillas

There are 4 species of gorilla, all of which are listed as critically endangered by WWF.

The most endangered of them all is the Cross River gorilla, with around 200-300 individuals remaining today. There are roughly just 880 Mountain gorillas alive today. However, this is a slight improvement from a population of 620 in 1989, but they are in no way out of the woods just yet.

Population numbers for both the Eastern and Western lowland gorillas are unknown as it is impossible to gather accurate data due to violence and civil unrest in their habitats. However, scientists estimate that there has been a decline of around 50% in the population of these species in the last 20 years alone.

Volunteering with gorillas helps to protect the apes, their habitat and the local communities which surround their range. Conservation efforts for gorillas are needed now more than ever. 

Threats Gorillas Are Facing

Gorillas face many threats day after day, some which are the result of natural causes, but human activity has severely impacted gorilla populations over recent years.

  • Disease – due to gorillas having such similar DNA to humans, they are susceptible to diseases like Ebola, TB, Scabies and more. Such diseases are transmitted through contact with humans, or when gorillas raid farms and villages in search of food.
  • Habitat Loss – according to WWF, just 17% of gorilla populations live in protected regions, but the remaining 83% face threats from logging companies clearing forest to fuel the timber trade, communities making way for settlements, and oil and gas companies who reign in on gorilla territory.
  • Weak Law Enforcement – the hunting of gorillas has increased over the years due to the bushmeat trade, and while the poaching of gorillas is illegal across the gorilla’s range, hunters, poachers and consumers are rarely apprehended.
Fast Facts
  • Individual gorillas can be identified by their nose prints. Like fingerprints in humans, nose prints are unique per gorilla.
  • A 2011 study revealed that gorillas use non-vocal ‘baby talk’ to communicate with infants. The study showed that gorillas over 3 years of age communicated with infants differently to adults. While the gestures are non-vocal, it was discovered that older gorillas would repeat gestures more with babies than with others, such as stroking their jaws.
  • Female gorillas mother babies every four to 6 years and will give birth just three or four times in their lifetime. This low reproduction rate can make it difficult for gorillas to come back from a decline in their population.
  • A silverback gorilla is the alpha male of the troop and the most experienced and mature. As the silverback is the leader he is responsible for the safety of the entire family.

Projects Do More

Where you can go
Contact Info
UK Office
The Great Traveller Ltd,
3 Dairy Yard
Star Street
Ware, Hertfordshire
SG12 9BX
United Kingdom
Opening hours: 9am–5pm

T: +44(0) 208 885 4987

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