The SBGi Gorilla Fund
SBGi introduces the Gorilla Fund Alumni Program
2014 was perhaps the most successful year ever in the history of SBGi – new facilities were opened across the US and the world, Straight Blast Gym athletes competed at the highest level in international BJJ championships and sold out arenas as part of the UFC, and recognition for the SBGi method and philosophy are at an all-time high. Present throughout all that success, as ever, was the increasingly recognizable logo of the Straight Blast Gym gorilla. With the gorilla logo having been a part of SBGi since Matt Thornton opened his first gym in in 1992, the decision was made that 2015 would be the year Straight Blast Gym gave something back to our loyal mascot.
The International Gorilla Conservation Programme (IGCP)
SBGi is looking to raise donations for the International Gorilla Conservation Programme (IGCP). The IGCP is a coalition of non-profit organizations attempting to ensure the conservation of mountain gorillas, and their forest habitat, throughout areas of Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The coalition is formed of Fauna & Flora International (FFI) and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) who are working across three international borders to encourage the respective authorities in each country to adopt a collaborative approach to conservation, and to foster widespread support for conservation across local communities.
The work done by the IGCP is almost as much about people as it is about gorillas. IGCP recognizes that to ensure the region is looked after in the long term, conservation must be achieved alongside the improvement of local communities. IGCP works to improve livelihoods by developing alternative income sources for farmers and sustainable tourism in the regions’ parks. Such efforts help to build support for the idea of conservation and a recognition for the significance of the gorilla habitat. Alongside building local community support, the IGCP provides support to the authorities tasked with managing the habitat in each of the three countries. Be it through financial aid, admin, coordination or communication, the IGCP attempts to establish and maintain a solid working relationship between organisations in a region rife with socio-economic issues, poverty, rebellion and war that often take precedent.
SBGi & the IGCP
SBGi is looking to raise money to support the International Gorilla Conservation Programme through its alumni program – an internal program that allows students to get a significant discount on training when a contribution to the Gorilla Fund is made. To find out more, go to sbggorillafund.com. Get involved today and help SBGi give something back to the endangered gorilla that has been our mascot for over twenty years.