About us

 Mission Statement

The future is uncertain. The planet, our only home is under assault like never before. Humans threaten the environment, wilderness, animals and plants. Wild animals are innocent victims of illegal trafficking, cruelty and habitat loss. Only one out of ten survives. At La Senda Verde we take care of rescued wild animals, provide them a forever home, and help them to regain trust, hope and happiness.

Volcan and Exalto

Founders

Vicky Ossio and Marcelo Levy

Vickyo and Marcelo Levy co-founded La Senda Verde in 2003. They reside at LSV, and have personally provided the majority of funding which LSV has received to date. 

Vicky and Marcelo Ossio, cofounders of LSV are impassioned conservationists that have always loved and minded about animals. They are truly devoted, compassionate and proactive activists whose main interest is the well-being of animals. They think that animals have rich personal lives and can help us learn about our place in this complex and inspiring world, and respect all living beings. Committed to conservation and education, V and M dedicate their lives to the animals that arrive at the refuge, loving and caring them.

History

Senda Verde Wildlife Sanctuary

LSV was established in 2003 originally as a project in ecotourism, with the objective to provide permanent hospitality services (food, showers/ bathroom, and accommodation) to the adventure tourism industry that transits on bicycles down the old road known as “the world´s most dangerous road” from the city of La Paz to Los Yungas. The property (located a small distance from the township of Yolosa, by the Coroico River of the North Yungas region of La Paz, Bolivia) was established in this location strategically to complement this type of industry. However without notice or plan LSV evolved into a vital link in warning all of the effects of animal trafficking in the region of Yungas, and the entirety of the north of the country.

Approximately one year later (2004), a capuchin monkey and two parrots were rescued.

Reflecting upon this incident, the necessity to contribute to conservation of fauna and flora was evident. From here on LSV decided to redefine their objectives and focus their efforts and energy to this cause. By limiting the level of tourists to that which will sustain the economical functions of LSV, primary focus can be given to this objective.

LSV Animal Refuge started its operations with a small number of animals that were voluntarily handed over to the refuge. Before the end of 2007 LSV established a relationship with the organization Animales SOS, this same institution made the case for the rescue of a 4 month old Andean Bear, Aruma. From here on LSV received a higher quantity of animals that were the result of illegal trafficking.

Following this incident LSV initiated contact with the Department of Biodiversity (DGB), dependent of the Environmental Ministry; with the purpose of becoming informed of the rules and regulations for creating a wildlife rescue centre and to coordinate an institutional relationship which marks the beginning of an operation that to this day has achieved highly effective results.

In 2009 LSV elaborated and presented a management plan to the DGB. This document was approved that same year. In 2008 LSV acquired the certification to proceed as a non-profit organization, approved by the Environmental Department of Affairs and the La Paz Government. The repercussions of this were two-fold. First, LSV was able to accept new animals more easily within government guidelines. Second, LSV is now obligated to accept any animals intercepted by the government.

Over the past four years, illegal animal trafficking has drastically increased in Bolivia. As a result, the animal population at LSV has more than quadrupled in the past three years to approximately 701 animals (January 2017). We now receive new animals at least monthly, and often weekly.

Articles & Reviews

Swing Mangia Swing! Photo by Tracy Buyce @ National Geographic Your Shot

La Senda Verde has been featured in different printed and electronic articles and reviews. Take a look at what they say about us!

Articles in English
Articles in Spanish