After years of back and forth, The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has partnered with the New York Blood Center (NYBC) in a mission to provide lifelong care for over 60 chimpanzees who had been abandoned in Liberia.

These beautiful chimpanzees were used by NYBC in experiments testing a Hepatitis B vaccine, and after the research program ended, they placed these chimps on a set of estuary islands in Liberia. After using these chimps in experiments for over 30 years, NYBC withdrew funding and essentially left these great apes to fend for themselves for nearly ten years. Many chimpanzees were found dead from starvation and dehydration. If not for the intervention of local groups and organizations, the future would have been incredibly bleak for these formerly exploited animals. Thankfully, in 2016, HSUS and several other organizations stepped in to provide emergency funding and expert care for these precious creatures.

Seeing as these chimps have only known life under the care of humans, they will never be able to return to the wild. Many will live for forty years or more, so much funding is needed to ensure their lives are fully enriched with adequate food, water, shelter, and medical care. As part of the agreement, NYBC is providing $6 million in funding to HSUS, which has agreed to assume permanent responsibility for providing lifetime care for the chimpanzees. With these funds, HSUS plans to build a basic facility for the chimps, but is calling on the public for further funding to give these neglected, intelligent beings the life they deserve.

According to HSUS, this will be the first chimpanzee sanctuary in Liberia, and you can help make it become a great success. If you are able, please consider making a donation towards the care of these chimpanzees. And please share this with friends and encourage them to join you in saving the world’s chimps!

Image Source: Carol Guzy/The Humane Society of the United States