by Abigail Riley
Tortured, traumatized, and completely alone – this is how Tita was found in December 2017. While her story is one of the most horrific that PASA has ever heard, it is also one of hope and resiliency.
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Tita had been tortured, with injuries including a broken arm, eye infection, and fingernails that had been brutally torn out one by one.
Physically and mentally broken, Tita was rushed to PASA member sanctuary Chimpanzee Conservation Center (CCC) where sanctuary staff worked tirelessly to care for her. CCC is also where she received her name, meaning “sister” in the local language to honor her sister who lost her life fighting for Tita. Sanctuary caregivers were pleased to see that Tita had some fight in her as well; she showed a strong will to live, and began to eat and drink normally – her first strong sign of recovery. Medical staff cared for the broken arm, monitoring it through x-rays and protecting it in a cast. She soon showed signs of emotional healing as well. Her surrogate parents even captured the touching moment that Tita laughed for the first time.
Tita’s supporters from around the world learned about her story, and wanted to fight for justice.
As spring arrived, CCC staff decided Tita was ready to meet other chimpanzees just like her. In March 2018, Tita was introduced to two other orphans at the Chimpanzee Conservation Center, Nana and Oumou. Tita and Nana approached each other first, embracing each other with tender reassurance, with Oumou cautiously waiting in the background. The trio soon became a little family of their own and now spend much of their time with their caregivers and exploring the trees and wilderness at the sanctuary.
Tita’s story may begin with tragedy, but it ends with a message of hope. While thousands of primates are affected by bushmeat and the pet trade, many facing far worse fates than Tita, there are also thousands of people around the world working tirelessly to save, support, and spread the word about these primates in need. Thank you for being one of them.
Every day, PASA and our members work to rescue baby chimpanzees like Tita.
Tita arrived at the sanctuary with her body and spirit broken.
Tita has a new family now, with fellow orphans Nana and Oumou.