Gorillas in the wild are endangered, and the Houston Zoo works with several organizations in Africa to protect and save them: Conservation Heritage – Turambe, Gorilla Doctors and GRACE. Learn more about them and how you can help wild gorillas.

Conservation Heritage-Turambe

Conservation and Health Education
Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda


2017 Successes:

  • 76 Rwandan learned about their local wildlife and saw species like the golden monkey in its natural habitat for the first time
  • 219 Rwandan students participated in weekly programs that increased their understanding of mountain gorillas and how they can benefit the community
  • 200 sheep were donated to 200 schoolchildren from CHT classes, providing families with an alternative source of income and decreasing the need to harvest resources from Virunga National Park

Conservation Heritage-Turambe conducts conservation and health education programs for local people in communities bordering Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, home to the critically endangered mountain gorilla. Through after-school programming with local primary school students and community outreach efforts, CHT promotes healthy communities and gorilla conservation through education and empowerment within the region.

How We Help CHT
What You Can Do For CHT
Check off some of their wish list items! View the Wish List for CHT 2015, and let us know of your impact at conversation@houstonzoo.org!

Visit Conservation Heritage-Turambe’s Facebook Page for updated information.

Directly support this project by clicking below. All funds placed through the Houston Zoo go directly to CHT for their programs.


GRACE: Gorilla Rehabilitation and Conservation Education Center

A Future for Gorillas, Built on Community
Democratic Republic of Congo 


2017 Successes:

  • A farm was created that will provide a stable food supply for the gorillas while helping to make sure that the land around GRACE is not overused
  • 28 primary school students attended visitor program gorilla viewing and guided nature walks
  • More than 3,000 people participated in World Gorilla Day, the largest local gathering in recent memory

GRACE’s mission is to provide the best facilities and care for rescued Grauer’s gorillas in the Democratic Republic of Congo while working alongside local communities to ensure gorilla survival in the wild. A symptom of the worsening situation for Grauer’s gorillas is the growing number of orphaned gorillas that have been confiscated by authorities in Congo and Rwanda over the past decade. Eastern lowland gorillas, also known as Grauer’s gorillas (Gorilla beringei graueri), only live the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in central Africa. Grauer’s gorillas are highly endangered due to widespread habitat destruction, poaching, and threats associated with the every growing human population. Over the past decade, insecurity in eastern Congo has amplified these threats, making the situation even more dire.

What is a Grauer's Gorilla?
How We Support GRACE
What You Can Do for GRACE

Gorilla Doctors

Saving a Species One Gorilla at a Time
Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda


2017 Successes:

  • 227 routine health checks performed on gorillas in Virunga, Volcanoes, Mgahinga, Bwindi Impenetrable, and Kahuzi-Biega National Parks
  • Performed 20 interventions to remove snares and/or provide antibiotics to gorillas suffering from respiratory and other illnesses
  • Provided vet care to 4 mountain gorilla orphans in captivity in Rumangabo, DRC

The Gorilla Doctors are dedicated to saving the lives of critically-endangered mountain and Grauer’s gorillas through healthy care. Their international team of veterinarians is the only group providing these animals with direct, hands-on care in the wild. With only 880 mountain gorillas left in the world today, it is critical to ensure the health and well-being of every individual gorilla. The land surrounding the national parks where gorillas live is some of the most densely populated in Africa. As a result of intense human activity near and inside the parks, gorillas face numerous threats to their survival, including poaching and habitat loss. The Gorilla Doctors team monitors the health of gorilla groups to ensure the early detection of disease and injury. When gorillas suffer from human-induced or life-threatening trauma or disease, the team stages medical interventions to save their lives. Gorilla Doctors recognizes that the health of the gorillas is inextricably linked to that of the entire ecosystem. In addition to providing life-saving care, the veterinary team further protects gorillas by supporting health programs for people and their animals living and working in and around gorilla habitat.

Caring for Gorilla Orphans
How we Help Gorilla Doctors
What You Can Do for Gorilla Doctors
  • Friend Gorilla Doctors on Facebook to stay up-to-date with their work.
  • Donate to directly to Gorilla Doctors to help them continue providing much needed medical care to critically-endangered mountain and Grauer’s gorillas.