Uganda Wildlife Authority has launched a pioneering initiative to protect Uganda’s mountain gorilla population by leveraging technology to create sustainable sources of non-trekking revenues to fund conservation activities in gorilla parks.      The subscription based technology enables you to follow as many gorilla families as you wish, knowing that your subscription is going towards protecting these glorious creatures and building the local communities around them.

For a monthly subscription of $2 paid through a mobile application My Gorilla Family, subscribers will receive an all-access pass to Bwindi/Mgahinga Conservation Area, home to more than 50% of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas. You will be able to follow gorilla daily excursions and family migrations through virtual trekking, celebrate their birthdays, new births, and receive updates from the rangers who protect and know them best. The application is available on IoS and Android.

This application is developed under the Home of a Gorilla (HOG) initiative. The HOG is a partnership between UWA and RoundBob/The Naturalist, a Ugandan conservation enterprise working towards the protection of the Mountain gorillas as endangered species by indulging in activities that generate financial resources for support gorilla conservation activities and livelihood improvement for communities neighbouring Uganda’s gorilla parks.

According to Executive Director, Uganda Wildlife Authority Mr. Sam Mwandha, the initiative is timely especially in the era of digital communication and that it time to use digital means to mobilize resources for conservation while providing enjoyment to the subscribers.   “It is our mandate as UWA to ensure sustainable management of wildlife resources. We are proud to work with our partners to achieve this by generating resources to support conservation while providing enjoyment to the people who give us these resources. This initiative will also support us to educate local communities and people from all over the world about the value of protecting these majestic animals, and keep them for future generations.”

David Gonahasa, Co-Founder of The Naturalist, further says that the initiative will see the introduction of a none fungible token (NFT) linked to habituated gorillas, “In addition to the subscription-based application My Gorilla Family, the Home of the Gorillas initiative will launch the first conservation limited NFT collection linked to the ±200 habituated individual mountain gorillas in the wild.” Mr. Gonahasa further reveals that that a there will be a launch of My gorilla festival in November 2023 that will bring both local and international visitors to Kisoro in Uganda to raise awareness and resources for gorilla conservation.

Bonifence Byamukama, Board Chairman of Roundbob/The Naturalist says that they are contributing towards improving awareness and ownership of conservation initiatives “We all need to be conservationists, regardless of our background or physical location. By leveraging technology, we are making more people aware of this natural capital we are blessed with, resulting in more mountain gorilla ambassadors globally,” he says. Mr. Byamukama adds that Uganda is ready to welcome the world at the November 2023 festival in Kisoro. “Uganda is absolutely ready for the festival like this.  The Pearl of Africa is gifted with immense attractions, therefore it is time for the world to come and see how much more Uganda has to offer and most importantly contribute toward the conservation of the mountain gorillas.”

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