In July 1960, a young Jane Goodall first set foot on the shores of Lake Tanganiyka in the country now known as Tanzania to pursue her childhood dream of studying and writing about African wildlife. In Gombe, where the world first encountered Jane Goodall's Chimps - with all their conflict, compassion and intelligence - the Gombe Stream Research Center was founded. The research center has provided Dr. Goodall and many other researchers with unique glimpses into the lives of chimpanzees, their habitats and many other species. Today, with 56 years of research on Gombe's chimpanzees, it remains the longest running research study in the world on wild great apes. The facilities at Gombe have served this research well and have contributed to endless amounts of other research, conservation work and public awareness/advocacy for many years. To see this unique and vital research continue, these facilities are in need of renovation.
ResponseAt this time, JGI needs to bring the facilities into the 21st century. The renovations would include the staff housing for the field assistants who follow the chimpanzees day in and day out, documenting their behaviors and life histories, as well as upgrading the communications array and solar power collection. It would also involve adding a GIS lab to continue to improve JGI's spatial capabilities to monitor Gombe's forests, enabling their protection for years to come. Before Jane could provide the world with some of the greatest scientific discoveries, she needed funding for her research. Thanks to someone who saw something in what these scientists were trying to do, Jane was able to begin her study in Gombe. With this funding for renovations, and with people still believing in this crucial research, we can provide these necessary improvements and keep on making history.