It hurts to say NO!

When I wrote the last blog, I thought it will take a while before we spot another chimp that need to be rescued. Sadly last weekend we got a call from an Australian working in the iron ore mines in Tonkolili that he had rescued a baby chimp from a hunter and would like to handover the chimp to Tacugama. I felt very strange trying to make him understand the current situation at Tacugama and pleading with him to look after the chimp for a while till we manage to create some space at Tacugama.

In short, I said NO for the first time in 15 years (for the time being)!

How to say no to those eyes?

how to say NO to those eyes?


But on a happy note, some kind people and organisations are coming to our aid.
IPPL-UK has donated £4800 towards building cages for the quarantine and introduction areas.

Lyndal Davies, our long standing friend of Tacugama and the producer of our first documentary (“Forest of Hope”) has donated $10000 to kick-off our appeal for the $100000 towards building new enclosures and holding facilities.

And of course, we thank the support of our blog readers…every bit helps!

Once we get to 50% of our target we can begin to order the fence materials from South Africa/Kenya.
I believe that together we can make a difference to these chimps.


Bookmark and Share


  1. Kat
    Posted March 5, 2010 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Oh Bala, that is just a little baby. I do hope the aussie guy can call you for info how to take care of the litte one until there is room “at the inn at tacugama” again.
    I do feel for your probably anguish to say no, but is it full it is. I hope we dont have to see anymore sad eyes like that soon..
    You are an angel, for all chimps.. thank you.

  2. Christine C.
    Posted March 5, 2010 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    Bala, please, if you can, get on Twitter…opens you up to a whole new follwoing of people who are interested in helping to save the Great Apes

  3. Theresa
    Posted March 5, 2010 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

    What a precious little one! I am posting to Facebook and I did send a letter of appeal to Arcus Foundation International to see if they could help with funds. I so wish I could do more to help myself. Thank goodness there are some good people like IPPL and Lyndal Davies to help out too. You are already making a difference, Bala. You and the staff. Courage! We are behind you all the way!

  4. Gayle
    Posted March 5, 2010 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    I saw Theresa’s posting on Facebook and will make a donation. I’ll also pass it on to my friends and ask they pass it on as well. As you said, Bala, every little bit helps. Never give up!!!

  5. Joanne
    Posted March 6, 2010 at 2:41 am | Permalink

    We are all trying to help. Don’t give up, Bala! Hope you’ll be able to make a room for this poor baby chimp soon.

  6. Joanne
    Posted March 6, 2010 at 2:45 am | Permalink

    I know you are all very busy, but is it possible for you to offer some off-site help to both the man and chimp? Or perhaps your staff can sometimes call or visit the Aussie guy to check how the baby is doing?

  7. Darren Rowtcliff
    Posted March 6, 2010 at 2:58 am | Permalink

    I am the Aussie that has the little girl chimp, i have called hes Sarah and whata hand full. Let me reassure you all that Bala has given me some very good advice on the care and diet needs of Sarah. She comes to work with me and has a small crib at the foot of my desk, although most of the time she would prefer to hang onto my leg or sleep on my lap. I will keep everyone up dated on her progress until she can go to her new home with her own kind at Tacugama.

  8. Theresa
    Posted March 6, 2010 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    Thank you, Gayle from the bottom of my heart! Big hug!

  9. Yvonne & SHaron N
    Posted March 6, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

    Thank you Bala for all the wonderful work Tacugama does to save these beautiful creatures. Don’t give up hope, we will do all we can to support you. Can you somehow make room for this big eyed baby chaimp from the Aussie man?

  10. Yvonne & SHaron N
    Posted March 6, 2010 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

    Thank you Bala for all the wonderful work Tacugama does to save these beautiful creatures. Don’t give up hope, we will do all we can to support you. Can you somehow take in this big eyed baby chimp from the Aussie man?

  11. Posted March 7, 2010 at 2:19 am | Permalink

    Ohh, Mr Bala this is indeed a heavy load but thanks for the hands that are coming up. i wish Tacugama all the very best in the search for more long lasting funds. Hope things will work fast so that we can again rescue another one from the Moyamba District, Kargboro Chiefdom.
    Bi Hug, my mentor

  12. Carol Keys
    Posted March 7, 2010 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    Bala, Dear Bala,

    I know the depth of your own anguish to say no to this – or any baby that needs us. I have sent an appeal to all my friends and family who may be able to help.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you, now and always, Carol

  13. Catherine M.
    Posted March 8, 2010 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Bala, I will post on FB in the hope of gathering additional support for Tacugama.

  14. Posted March 8, 2010 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    Bless you Darren Rowtcliff for keeping her safe for now_ thank you from the bottom of my heart!

  15. Joanne Yang
    Posted March 9, 2010 at 4:12 am | Permalink

    Thank you Darren for taking care of the baby chimp who really lots of care now. I still hope she can go to Tacugama soon though.

  16. Christine C.
    Posted March 9, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    A big Thanks to Darren Rowtcliff :)

    And glad to see you on Twitter Bala!!

  17. Theresa
    Posted March 9, 2010 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    Thank you so much Darren for rescuing sweet, little Sara! She would still be with her mother if not for the hunter so she naturally wants to cling to you. I’m sure you will take wonderful care of her until Bala can take her at the sanctuary. Again, THANK YOU! You are a special person to take on this task.

  18. Posted March 9, 2010 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for staying with us. Your kind words and donations mean so much to us. We are proud to have so many sincere and caring friends for Tacugama. Pass the word around. We’ll get there!

  19. Sherri Schroeder
    Posted March 10, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Darren Rowtcliff, hero of baby chimps everywhere — YOU ROCK! You have a free place to stay if you’re ever in Austin, Texas

  20. Darren Rowtcliff
    Posted March 19, 2010 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    Sarah is doing very well, She has put on some weight and like the other little guys at tacugama loves her milk and not ashamed of doing the loudest burps to show her appreciation. My morning routine is quite hectic arranging personnel and vehicles for the days tasks and I have noticed increased traffic into my office, not to see me or discuss work, everyone wants to see how the little girl is going and say hi to her.
    Sarah has a big family here and loved dearly but everyone has been told that she will be going soon to be with her own kind. I have also increased the awareness of the wrongs of keeping theses animals in captivity and as well threatening instant prosecution should I find out anyone has been involved in the illegal killing and capture of these magnificent creatures.

  21. Joanne
    Posted March 19, 2010 at 11:07 pm | Permalink

    Hi Darren, thanks so much for the update. It’s so good to hear Sarah and you are doing very well. It’s tragic that Sarah was taken away from her mum and family, but it may be an opportunity for the protection of these amazing creatures. I’m sure your increasing visitors also learn a lot and will join to help.

  22. Theresa
    Posted March 20, 2010 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    Thank you so much for the update Darren. You have no idea how appreciative we are for your help. Thank you also for educating the people you can and spreading the word about these great animals. Give Sarah a big hug from us! When it’s time for her to leave, Mama Posseh will take wonderful care of her and she will always be in your heart. You will be giving her a good life. God bless you!

One Trackback

  1. By Sarah squeezes in – Tacugama on April 5, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    […] It hurts to say NO! […]

Post a Comment