WHY THIS ENGAGEMENT IN BOLIVIA?
Bolivia enjoys exceptional biodiversity. However, it is not valued by a vast majority of inhabitants or by the authorities and the environmental situation is very worrying.
Traffic and hunting are common though illegal. Pollution and deforestation reach alarming levels.
This country is severely lacking the means to protect species and the new laws to operate national parks symbolize an uncertain future. There are too few environmental initiatives. The difficult context has given us some kind warnings that have only strengthened our willingness to bring our biodiversity project to fruition.
WHY WORK ON ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS?
In Bolivia as in France, many do not have the tools or knowledge needed to feel concerned about the environmental situation or to adopt biodiversity-friendly behaviour. It is IMPORTANT to know the species that surround us and their way of life.
Then to UNDERSTAND their role in the ecosystem and the benefits they bring to us. Finally, to ENHANCE biodiversity as a whole and to become aware of its essential role.
These three steps lead to respect for the environment, the desire to defend it or at least not to destroy it. Practical and concrete alternatives to behaviours identified as detrimental to the local ecosystem must be proposed. Significant and lasting change will be the result of a joint and global effort, not only by the authorities through great initiatives but also by the inhabitants through the acquisition of simple reflexes on a daily basis.
WHY IS A WILDLIFE RESCUE CENTRE NECESSARY?
Bolivia is unfortunately not equipped to deal with the number of animals saved from trafficking. The few existing structures are full to crack and too many animals are waiting in tiny cages for a place that can accommodate them. We will therefore provide them with a space adapted to their needs while taking care of their physical and psychological health.
In addition, a shelter is a privileged space for the work of awareness that drives us. With proper structure and protocol, the sanctuary will also be a tool for the release of certain species on site.
WHY DID WE CHOSE BUENA VISTA MUNICIPALITY TO SETTLE?
The proximity (less than two hours) with the city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra is important because it is the prefecture of the department of Santa Cruz. This department is most involved in the trafficking of wild animals, and the prefecture is the only one entitled to recover trafficked animals.
Far from being a benefit to the region, we had to set up our project in an area where deforestation, hunting and traffic are important.