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About Chipangali

Chipangali Wildlife Orphanage,
Bulawayo, Zimbabwe

Chipangali is a haven for wild animals which have little hope for survival in the wild – creatures which have been orphaned, abandoned, injured, born in captivity or brought up unsuccessfully as pets. It is often the last refuge for those brought in sick or injured, and increasingly it is a sanctuary for confiscated animals.

Chipangali has been featured in countless documentaries and is now world renowned for its pioneering work and is famed as one of Africa’s largest and most successful wildlife rehabilitation/release centres.
The wildlife Orphanage was established in 1973 by ex-game ranger Vivian Wilson and his wife Paddy, and its primary function is to offer a home to orphaned, abandoned and sick wild animals. Chipangali is not a zoo.  
Wherever possible, rescued animals and birds are rehabilitated and returned to the wild. If safe release into their natural habitat is not possible, animals are cared for and kept for educational purposes and zoological study. In the case of endangered species, captive breeding programs may also be undertaken. 
Chipangali Wildlife Orphanage is a registered Welfare Organization (38/77) in Zimbabwe.
The word Chipangali comes from the Chinyanja language in eastern Zambia where Viv Wilson originally began his career in with the Zambia Government as a tsetse-fly control operator, it is here that the whole concept of Chipangali was born and derived. The word means ‘open friendly country’.

The Functions of Chipangali today:

1. Wildlife Orphanage/ Animal Rehabilitation Centre: To provide a service  to rescue and care for injured wildlife, thereby providing a home for the many injured, sick, orphaned, abused, confiscated or abandoned wild animals from anywhere in Zimbabwe.

2. Education: to educate the Zimbabwe public, especially young children, with the aid of live viewing of many species not easily seen in the wild. Provide relevant lectures, film and slide shows for visiting groups. Thus providing a local resource centre for children to appreciate the important value of Zimbabwe’s natural heritage.

3. Nature Conservation: to teach people and especially children, to appreciate the wonder and variety of indigenous wildlife and not to take it for granted that these animals or their environment will not always be there for their enjoyment without the correct management of our natural resources.

4. Research: to observe and record useful zoological information on captive animals such as body growth and development, nutrition, dentition and gestation periods. Relevant research and field surveys are undertaken in the wild, under natural conditions in National Parks and protected areas.

5. Cooperation: To provide a link between local and governmental authorities thus being able to offer assistance to organizations like SPCA, National Parks, schools and private individuals where ever problem animals are concerned.

Today, Viv’s son Kevin and his wife Nicky are the hands-on directors of the orphanage, Kevin is responsible the general management of the organization, together with his photography qualifications and flair for technology he also handles the advertising and PR work. Nicky while juggling her full-time role as Mum, with the running of our Business Centre and overseeing Chipangali's all-important accounts, also assists in the raising and caring for many of the baby animals in the nursery.

Marion Boddy is solely responsible for the Volunteer program ensuring that all volunteers get 24 hour a day attention and are fully occupied during the day. She is currently carrying out research on the high blood iron levels in Black rhino. Additionally Marion is the main surrogate mum of all of our orphaned baby animals, she has an exceptional rapport with the primates and young antelope.

Marie Nobel has recently joined us to assist Nicky with the administration of the Orphanage and she will be playing an important role in the Bush Camp and Tea room operations.

Des Grant has also recently joined Chipangali to help Kevin as General Manager of the Orphanage

Whilst at our Town Office, founder Viv Wilson & his research assistant/secretary Carol Macklin are busy with new and ongoing projects, both in the office and out in the field, and are supported by a team of research workers.

The Founders: Chipangali founder Viv Wilson and his late wife Paddy retired from the active side of running the Orphanage over ten years ago, in order to devote more time to urgent wildlife research projects. Viv has been the leading instigator of several unique projects, such a ten year survey of the duikers of Africa which culminated in the 800 page masterpiece named The Duikers for Africa, Masters of the African floor. Recently Viv has expanded his research activites to include a survey of the leopard and cheetah of Zimbabwe, the biodiversity of the Matobo National Park and the formation of the CRI (Carnivore Research Institute)
The Patrons:  Her Royal Highness, Diana, Princess of Wales was Chipangali's patron from 1983 until her sad death, when the Princess Diana Trust took over the role. In addition, the conservation activist and ex-actress, Stephanie Powers, is a patron and Ambassador for Chipangali in the USA. On retirement from active service, co-founder Paddy Wilson was also made a Patron.

More about the Diana Princess of Wales Education Centre

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* Registered Welfare Organization No. (38/77)