Claudine André

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Claudine André
Claudine André 2012 by Francis Hannaway.jpg
Claudine André at Lola ya Bonobo, Kinshasa, - September 2012.
Born (1946-11-06) 6 November 1946 (age 72)
La Hestre, Hainaut, Belgium
Known forStudy of bonobos, conservation, animal welfare
AwardsPrince Laurent Prize (Belgium),[1] National Order of Merit (France),[2] Badham-Evans Award for Women's Commitment to Wildlife (Twycross Zoo, England)[3][4]
Scientific career
InstitutionsLola ya Bonobo

Claudine André, (born 6 November 1946 in La Hestre, Hainaut Province, Belgium), is a Belgian conservationist. She founded Lola ya bonobo in 1994, which is a bonobo sanctuary, just south of Kinshasa, at Mont Ngafula, in the Lukaya Valley, Democratic Republic of Congo.[5]

The aim of the sanctuary is to collect young bonobos, most having been orphaned due to the actions of poachers, and eventually reintroduce them into a forest reserve. During the same year, Claudine André started the Friends of Animals in the Congo, of which she is still president.

Earlier life[edit]

Claudine arrived in Congo as a child, with her father, who was a veterinary surgeon, and has lived there ever since. She ran an art boutique, sourcing and selling rare art works. She married Victor and has five children. When war disrupted daily life in Kinshasa, the capital city of the Democratic Republic of Congo, in the 1990s, Claudine worked as a volunteer in Kinshasa Zoo, because the animals had been neglected and were starving. Elsewhere in the country, people were finding traditional food production difficult, because of the war, and turned instead to bushmeat to feed themselves and their families.[6] This in turn led to orphaned bonobos turning up for sale on the streets of Kinshasa - and it was from this situation that Claudine started Lola ya bonobo.[1]


  • Claudine André, Une tendresse sauvage, Calmann-Lévy, Paris, 2006. ISBN 2-7021-3594-3
  • Claudine André, Lola ya Bonobo : Le paradis des Bonobos - République Démocratique du Congo, Éditions Oka, Paris, 2010. ISBN 978-2-9537298-0-1

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Friends of Bonobos website: The story of Lola ya Bonobo". Archived from the original on 2014-02-16.
  2. ^ "Claudine Andre - Founder of Lola Ya Bonobo". The Homo Bonobo Project. Retrieved 2014-08-01.
  3. ^ "Zoo and Aquarium Visitor's Web Site: Susannah York, Stefanie Powers and Miranda Richardson Embrace Zoo Award To Claudine André". Retrieved 2014-08-01.
  4. ^ "BBC website: Expert honoured for bonobo work - 28 November 2008". BBC News. 2008-11-28. Retrieved 2014-08-01.
  5. ^ "The story of Lola ya Bonobo". Lola ya Bonobo. Retrieved 12 March 2011.
  6. ^ "The Paula Gordon Show: Sanctuary: a Love Story". 2004-05-20. Retrieved 2014-08-01.

External links[edit]