The mission of the Bonobo Conservation Initiative (BCI) is to protect bonobos, preserve their tropical rainforest habitat, and empower local communities in the Congo Basin. BCI is a non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C. and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). BCI is the only international organization solely dedicated to protecting wild bonobos and their rainforest habitat.
Bonobos are one of humankind’s closest living relatives. These great apes are complex beings with profound intelligence, emotional expression, and sensitivity. The most unusual and compelling feature of bonobos is their society–matriarchal, egalitarian, and peaceful. The last great ape species discovered, bonobos could be the first to become extinct unless concerted action is taken now to protect them and their rainforest home.
BCI’s guiding vision is the Bonobo Peace Forest, a connected network of community-managed reserves where both bonobos and their human neighbors can thrive.
Our approach to conservation is fueled by the belief that local leadership is the path to effective and enduring conservation. Inspired by the collaborative and cooperative nature of bonobos, BCI developed the Bonobo Peace Forest concept in partnership with Congolese organizations and communities. The Peace Forest addresses conservation and humanitarian needs simultaneously. Today, the Bonobo Peace Forest spans over 50,000 square miles–and it’s still growing!
Bonobos live in the heart of the Congo rainforest, the second largest rainforest in the world. Home to nearly half the plant and animal species found in Africa, this vast forest is critical to health of our planet. BCI works to protect this vital land through the creation of legally protected areas managed by local communities, creating contiguous blocks of safe habitat for bonobos.Explore More
Protecting bonobos is BCI’s primary mission. Bonobos are humankind’s closest relatives, and they are on the brink of extinction. Collaborating with local and international partners, we are providing a safe haven for these amazing primates. We are hard at work expanding the Bonobo Peace Forest, a constellation of linked community-based reserves and conservation concessions.Discover How
Humans are the greatest threat facing bonobos—and also the greatest hope. The Congolese people are the ultimate stewards of the bonobo habitat, and BCI seeks to build the capacity of Congolese communities.Understand Why
Our sibling species is in danger of extinction. Poaching, logging, and agricultural encroachment threaten the dwindling bonobo population. Protecting bonobo habitat and studying this relatively unknown species are top priorities of BCI.
You can make a difference. Bonobos need your help today!Get Involved