Twenty-eight years ago, after a period of significant regional conflict, national parks were established to preserve the rapidly diminishing gorilla species in Southwestern Uganda. The outside world applauded the success of this initiative, hardly noticing the impact on the forest-dwelling Batwa people who, like the gorillas, call the Virunga Mountains their home.
Marched out of their homes, often at gunpoint, the Batwa had no place to go. Volcanoes Safaris noticed the importance of local communities and established the Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust, an organization connecting tourism activities to the neighbouring communities that are absolutely critical to the ongoing work in conservation. The Gahinga Batwa Village Project was initiated by VSPT and partnering with Localworks, began to facilitate the restoration of dignity and a sense of home to a displaced group of Batwa through the design and construction of a new village to call their own.