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Primate Rehabilitation in Argentina

Feeding the monkeys

Projects Abroad volunteers have the unique opportunity to work with the first and only primate rehabilitation centre in Argentina. Whether you are a studying a related subject, want to gain hands on experience in the field of animal rescue and rehabilitation or are simply a passionate animal lover then this project is for you!

The centre is situated 80km north of Cordoba in the Tiu Mayu region. Over the past 20 years the local team have focused on the rescue and rehabilitation of the Black Howler monkey. This species is now considered vulnerable as the local communities continue to hunt for bush meat, keep them as pets and destroy their natural habitats.

The centre aims to “teach the monkeys to be monkeys again” through a programme which focuses on physical, psychological and social rehabilitation. Through this specialised programme the centre are proud to have successfully re-introduced over 100 monkeys into their natural habitat. A 360 hectare reserve surrounds the centre allowing the staff to monitor and follow the progress of the monkeys once they have been released.

Each monkey who arrives at the centre has to be carefully assessed in order to establish a specific plan of action enabling the monkey to return to the wild as soon as possible. Unfortunately some monkeys have been too traumatised and can no longer return to the wild. For these particular cases the centre ensures that they can live in the most natural habitat possible with regular care, health checkups and a special diet.

Volunteering on the Primate Rehabilitation Placement with Projects Abroad

Volunteer with monkeys

As a volunteer you will work alongside the local staff helping with the day to day running of the centre. Activities can include:

  • Feeding and caring for the monkeys
  • Observation, study and data input of the various social groups
  • Careful monitoring and care of the baby orphaned monkeys
  • Cleaning and maintaining the centre
  • Construction and repair of the monkey enclosures
  • Caring for the many other animals at the centre including llamas, capuchin monkeys, American lions, donkeys and dogs

You do not need to have experience to take part in this project but a love for animals is definitely a must! You will gain a valuable insight into how a rescue centre operates and the time which is dedicated to helping these animals return to the wild.

All volunteers live at the centre and have meals provided by the local staff. You will sleep in a rustic stone bungalow shared with other volunteers. Even though the living conditions are basic, there is no electricity or running water, they are functional and most people quickly get used to a much simpler way of life. There is a shared dining area with a generator where volunteers can relax after work.

At weekends volunteers often travel to the local town of La Cumbre to use the internet, laundry facilities and do some general shopping. In addition the weekends are often spent trekking and exploring the picturesque area surrounding the centre.

Even though the centre has a resident biologist who speaks some English it is definitely advisable to learn a bit of Spanish before you arrive. This will allow you to interact with all the local members of staff and learn more about the running of the centre.

You can join the Primate Rehabilitation project in Argentina for two weeks if you don't have time to join us for a month or more. This project has been selected by our local colleagues as being suitable for short term volunteering. Although you will gain a valuable cultural insight and work intensely at the primate centre, please be aware that you may not be able to make the same impact as someone volunteering for a longer period.

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