Give Green this Holiday Season and Help Koko Save Gorillas

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Redwood City, CA – Nov. 17, 2009 — Consumers wanting to “give green” this year can look to the Gorilla Foundation, a conservation organization that is making a difference every day. The Foundation, home of Koko, the lowland gorilla who can speak to us through the use of American Sign Language (ASL), is busy helping holiday wishes come true for gorilla lovers worldwide.

Koko, who has a signing vocabulary of over 1000 words, loves sparkling apple cider, special Christmas treats, and opening presents. Animal lovers can give the gift of membership on behalf of their friends and loved ones this holiday season at, or purchase limited edition artwork created by Koko or her friend Michael as a special gift at and receive a free Koko plush doll! In addition, the new mini Koko’s Kitten book makes a great stocking stuffer (

The Gorilla Foundation is taking a vital step toward saving the gorilla species from extinction with construction of the Maui Ape Preserve (MAP). MAP will serve as a sanctuary for Koko, provide a natural environment for her to raise a baby and will also be a resource for other gorillas in need. Additionally, the preserve will be a world-class educational center, sharing the important lessons learned from interspecies communication to help promote the Gorilla Foundation’s mission of conservation through communication.

To view additional photos of Koko celebrating the holiday season, please visit: To request access to high-resolution photos, please contact: [email protected].

About The Gorilla Foundation

Mini Koko's Kitten Books
New “Mini” Koko’s Kitten Books on Sale

The Gorilla Foundation is dedicated to the preservation, protection and well being of gorillas through interspecies communication research and education: Conservation through Communication. The foundation was established in 1976 and is best known for its groundbreaking work with two western lowland gorillas, Koko and Michael, who were taught to become fluent in American Sign Language. The results are published in numerous research papers, books and videos available in our bibliography.

The Gorilla Foundation’s current goals include: 1) establishing the Maui Ape Preserve — the first tropical gorilla sanctuary outside of Africa; 2) saving gorillas from extinction by extending the empathy created through interspecies communication worldwide; and 3) helping Koko fulfill her wish of having a baby, so that she can transmit her language skills to the next generation and thus ensure that there will always be a gorilla ambassador who can speak to us in our own language. We still have much to learn from this critically endangered sentient species.

The Gorilla Foundation is a non-profit 501c3 corporation and is underwritten by donations from individuals, grants from foundations and corporations, and educational product sales.