Sunday, April 27, 2014
They came from around the world.
Dozens of animal rescue leaders such as Swasti Mukti of Indonesia met at the International Primate Protection League sanctuary in Knightsville on the weekend of April 12 to participate in the 13th biennial IPPL Supporters Meeting.
The session involved discussions on animal protection, lectures, book singings, a meet-and-greet, gibbon sanctuary tours and a silent auction.
Visitors from across the United States and 12 different countries attended. Summerville Mayor Bill Collins stopped by as well.
The IPPL sanctuary was established by Shirley McGreal, who created the sanctuary near Summerville that houses gibbons rescued from zoos, laboratories and former pets.
The primates are native to the subtropical rainforests of Indonesia, northeastern India and southern China. There are 36 gibbons at IPPL.
Mukti works for Profauna, the biggest Indonesian company working for wildlife and forest conservation.
She said the group does many things to protect animals. They campaign, educate, help law enforcement and rescue wildlife especially after natural disasters. “We want to help as many people as possible,” Mukti said. “We visit elementary schools, high schools and universities. We visit villages and offer some training for government officials.”
Mukti is the international affairs officer and campaign manager. The 2014 supporters meeting was her first time visiting IPPL.
“IPPL has been supporting our organization since 2007,” Mukti said. “We’ve had years of a good relationship.
“We would like to learn what they do and overcome difficulties in other countries. In our latest IPPL-supported program last year we had a campaign tour across the island of Sumatra.
“This year we are touring across the island of Borneo, next month. We’re really excited. IPPL has been a great supporter for us.”
Mukti said Profauna protects the forest because it is the habitat of orangutans.