TV host Ellen DeGeneres to visit Rwanda in mountain gorilla conservation effort

TV host Ellen DeGeneres to visit Rwanda in mountain gorilla conservation effort

U.S. talk show host Ellen DeGeneres will be heading to Rwanda next week for the construction of a gorilla research facility being funded through her newly launched wildlife conservation foundation. DeGeneres on May 16 confirmed she was building the “Ellen DeGeneres Campus” for scientists with the non-profit Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, an organization working to protect one of the last remaining populations of mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei) in the Virunga Mountains of Rwanda. The initiative is the inaugural project under the Ellen DeGeneres Wildlife Fund, which was established in February to help fund global wildlife conservation efforts. Rangers in Rwanda survey a wild population of mountain gorillas. Image courtesy of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund. “We have to raise $10 million to build the Foundation [the Ellen DeGeneres Wildlife Fund], and we will be leaving in a week to go to Africa,” DeGeneres said in an interview on her talk show. The new facility will occupy some 4,650 square meters (50,000 square feet) of space adjacent to Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park. It will feature a scientific and conservation library, laboratories, a meeting space, an exhibition on mountain gorilla conservation, and classrooms. The campus will also have accommodation to host up to 40 students and visiting researchers. “This campus will inspire and educate local communities and tourists, engage scientific and conservation trailblazers to share knowledge and provide a training ground for a new wave of African scientists committed to conservation,” the Ellen DeGeneres Wildlife Fund said in a statement on…

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