Fish harvesting
A swamp area in the Kahuzi-Biega National Park .

The Kahuzi-Biega National Park is located in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo. For the protection of the Eastern Lowland Gorillas, the Belgian colonial administration created a zoological reserve here in 1937.

Its biological richness is immense. It contains great diversity of forests where many endemic plant species are found. Its fauna is also diverse and it's a home for not only the eastern lowland gorilla but also the forest elephant, chimpanzee, several kinds of primates among others. The Kahuzi-Biega National Park was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage in 1980 but it's been listed as a World Heritage in Danger since 1997 due to the overwhelming threats and danger caused by the political instability of this region; influx of refugees, illegal settlers, poaching, removal and burning of timber, presence of militia groups. Although the situation has much improved today, a lot more has to be done to make sure this invaluable park will be passed on to the next generation.

Two gorilla infants playing.

For a long-term conservation of the Kahuzi-Biega National Park, the Pole Pole Foundation International, POPOF-I, the first local NGO in the area is making efforts to reduce human pressures on its natural resources by involving local communities in a variety of projects.

As one of our projects we have been distributing over 1.5 million tree seedlings to the villages around the Park since 1997. People use these trees to meet a variety of their needs such as charcoal, firewood, construction and so on. These trees also help fertilizing agricultural farms and reducing human pressures on the protected natural resources in the Park. It's playing a role of buffer zone between the local communities and the Park.

Recent Events

Bathy Wenga, Health Department Manager [April 2014]

We now welcomed Bathy Wenga as Department Manager for Health, HIV and Gender. We organized a day for educating youth around the KBNP about how to avoid the HIV/AIDS infection. [read more in our blog]

Curving woods for artisans [Januray 2014]

In 2013, thanks to the Whitley Fund for Nature’s award, POPOF-I was able to buy some woods from farmers, which were distributed to them long time ago. And the ex-poachers, now trained and converted to artisans were able to carve and varnish 75 pieces of gorilla portraits. [read more in our blog]

John received “Green Oscars” 2013 Whitley Award [May 2013]

We are very pleased to announce that our founder John Kahekwa has been presented a 2013 Whitley Award by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal at the Royal Geographical Society in London, UK yesterday. [read more in our blog]

Preliminary Census in The Eastern Lowland Gorilla Habitat [April 2013]

For many years we have been invited by many other communities located in the whole habitat of the Eastern Lowland Gorillas but was unable to respond positively due to lack of budget. In May 2012 we launched a mission to the Itebero sector and reached 45 villages where 100 people were interviewed. [read more in our blog]