[IBD: Gabon] Bienvenue au Gabon!

I am writing on behalf of my IBD Team (Charlene Chen, Sergio Gonzalez, and Kris Harders). We are in Gabon working on a feasibility study for the Wildlife Conservation Society’s proposed Rainforest Discovery Center in the Mondah Forest 20 minutes north of Libreville. The mission of Bois des Geants is to inspire local Gabonese to appreciate their country’s best kept secret: its biodiversity.
After a couple of days in Bronx, NY visiting the headquarters of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), we flew from JFK to Paris (7 hrs) and then to Libreville (6 hrs), where we landed at Aeroport International Leon M’Ba. We are staying at the WCS lodging, where we have our own rooms, own bathrooms, a Gabonese chef named Pierre, an Equitorial Guinean security guard named Alejandro, and a house cat named Gin (her sister Tonic ran away).
We spent Saturday morning hiking through the Mondah Forest, which is where Bois des Geants would be constructed:

Then we spent a week conducting 8 interviews of officials from the ministries of Tourism, the Environment, and Education, a travel agency, construction company, the national school of water and forestry, a bank, and the national agency of national parks. Each day we increase our understanding of the culture of Gabon, which is a complex melange of French and Gabonese attitudes.


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