Drawing for the Planet's Chimpanzee Community 2 project in partnership with Liberia Chimpanzee Rescue and Protection (LCRP) and Born Free, raises awareness of endangered chimpanzees, and raises funds for LCRP’s vital work caring for over 100 critically endangered Western chimpanzees, orphaned by the illegal bushmeat and pet trades.

Led by Jane Lee McCracken, artist and founder of Drawing for the Planet (DftP), over 150 children from the USA, UK and Liberia are invited to learn about chimpanzees, why they are threatened, their vital role—as gardeners of the forest— to the wellbeing of our planet, and create ballpoint pen drawings of LCRP's orphan chimps. The project aims to raise awareness of chimpanzees through the children's drawings and to create a generation of chimp champions!

"Chimpanzees are humankind’s closest relatives, sharing over 98% of our genetic blueprint, and are highly social and deeply intelligent. A keystone species, these sentient mammals help sustain their forest habitat and thus mitigate climate change as these ‘green lungs’ store carbon and generate oxygen."  Born Free 

Deforestation and the illegal wildlife trade are decimating Western chimpanzee populations with as few as 18,000-65,000 wild individuals remaining. Their decline affects us all.


Launched in 2022, Chimpanzee Community 2 includes Amazing Chimps virtual and on-site interactive workshops co-delivered by Laura Eastman, Born Free's Head of Education, Jenny Desmond, Co-Founder of LCRP, and Jane. In the educational workshop Laura focuses on chimpanzee facts, their rainforest habitat, why animals are important to rainforests, the impact of deforestation and the illegal bush-meat and pet trades on chimpanzees, and how to we can help protect chimpanzees and other wildlife.

During the educational workshop, children are given the opportunity to watch Jenny's video featuring Mary Beauty, one of the orphan chimpanzees in LCRP's care. In the video Jenny discusses the 24-hour care LCRP chimps are provided with and the often tragic circumstances that lead to their rescue. Mary Beauty's mother was killed by poachers for the illegal bushmeat trade when Mary was a couple of weeks old. LCRP's chimpanzees cannot be safely returned to the wild due to the threat of poaching but LCRP's forest sanctuary provides them with a beautiful natural habitat in which to play and explore.

Children are also given the opportunity to ask Jenny questions about chimpanzees. Thomas from Belsay Primary asked if chimpanzees wash their hair—answer: chimpanzees don't wash! Scroll down to The Amazing Chimps section to learn more about LCRP's chimps.

In Jane's practical drawing workshops she asks children to choose one of Jenny's photographs of LCRP orphan chimps as inspiration for their drawings. Jane encourages the artists to imagine what the chimpanzee in the image has seen with its eyes and to form an emotional connection with the chimp while making their drawing. She also encourages the children to express themselves, and embrace the fact that everyone can draw. 

From 2022-23, children from El Morro and Top of the the World elementary schools, USA, and Belsay and Ponteland primary schools, UK, participated in Amazing Chimps workshops and created extraordinary drawings. Children from Liberia will participate in the workshops in 2024.

As part of the project Jane is creating composite artworks for each participating school featuring all children's drawings. View these artworks in The Artworks gallery below.

Following the Liberia workshops Jane will create a composite artwork featuring a selection of children's drawings for public display in Liberia to raise further awareness of LCRP's vital work, locally.

Jane is also creating a ballpoint pen drawing of LCRP chimps for the project to highlight the importance of chimpanzee's as a keystone species and the many Liberian species that depend on their critical role maintaining rainforests.

In 2023, DftP also developed Liberian Wildlife workshop, which Jane delivered to Rhyhope Junior School, UK. This workshop focuses on vulnerable Liberian forest-dwelling species. CLICK on the image below to view this gallery.

DftP Liberian Wildlife flyers featuring images of Liberian species including chimpanzees will be given to Liberian schools to use for drawing projects and raise further awareness of the rich and diverse wildlife of Liberia. See our Zambian Wildlife project flyers here

This online gallery is evolving as the project develops and at completion will include Jane's mural for display in Liberia and chimpanzee drawings by every participating child.


WATCH THE VIDEO: Chimpanzee Community 2020 Jane Lee McCracken, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

In 2020 Jane was commissioned by BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead to create an artwork in BALTIC Learning Lounge, inspired by BALTIC’s Animalesque 2019/20 exhibition. Jane delivered workshops to children from Gateshead schools who were given the opportunity to raise awareness of endangered chimpanzees through their drawings.

Chimpanzee Community mural was created in response to Marcus Coates Degreecoordinates, Shared Traits of the Hominini (Humans, Bonobos and Chimpanzees) and Mary Beth Edelson Untitled 1972-2011 collage-drawings artworks featured in Animalesque. The artwork was also inspired by LCRP and its chimpanzees.

The aim of the artwork was twofold: firstly, to highlight the fact that chimpanzees and bonobos are our closest living relatives, sharing 99% of our DNA symbolising that all hominini species share similar behaviour traits and secondly, to raise awareness of the plight of chimpanzees and the work of LCRP.

Following the installation of Chimpanzee Community mural in BALTIC, in 2021 Jane founded DftP and partnered with Born Free and LCRP to create Chimpanzee Community 2 project. Read more about the BALTIC project in page.



Laguna Beach Chimps 2024, Jane Lee McCracken featuring drawings by children from El Morro and Top of the World Elementary schools

In November 2022, thirty Grade 3 children from El Morro and Top of the World Elementary schools, Laguna Beach, USA, participated in Amazing Chimps workshops. The DftP team worked with Laguna Beach Unified Schools District and its K-5 Visual and Performing Arts ToSA, Sarah Wolsey. 


Belsay Chimps 2024, Jane Lee McCracken featuring drawings by Belsay Primary School children

In December 2022, forty-three Years 3-6 children from Mr Harvey and Miss Cruz's classes, Belsay School, UK, participated in Amazing Chimps workshops. The DftP team worked with Ponteland Primary Head Teacher, Claire Johnson.

Ponteland Chimps 2024, Jane Lee McCracken featuring drawings by Ponteland Primary School and Jameson Manor children

On 6 March 2023, fifty-four Year 3 children from Mrs Allan and Miss Forbes classes, Ponteland Primary School, UK, participated in Amazing Chimps workshops. DftP volunteer, Veterinary Nurse, Sue Etherington assisted Jane during both the Belsay and Ponteland schools workshops. The artwork also includes drawings by children from the local community. Mrs. Allan said:

" [The children] learned about different species of chimps, how they communicate, why they are endangered and what they can do to help. It also helped us recap our knowledge of the rainforest."


Meet some of LCRP's amazing chimps with photographs and descriptions by Jenny Desmond and drawings by our Chimpanzee Community 2 chimp champion children.


Hori lost his eye when his mother was shot, and pellets hit him too. He is a very brave boy and is one of the most loving chimpanzees to new babies coming in to LCRP. 

Drawing by Hale, Top of the World Elementary School


It’s always fun to play with your feet! Mary Beauty certainly enjoys it.

Drawing by Shaylee, El Morro Elementary School


Love arrived at LCRP in 2023 and was very sick but is doing much better.

Drawing by Emily, Belsay Primary School


Yep—a good laugh!

Drawing by Anna, Ponteland Primary School


Amazing Chimps educational resource will be available as a free download from Born Free website. A link will also be available here.


Gloria, image courtesy of Jenny Desmond

LCRP’s Sanctuary and Conservation Center is dedicated to improving the lives of chimpanzees, both wild and orphaned, through rescue, rehabilitation, protection and conservation.

LCRP - rescuing chimpanzees in need, keeping wild chimps wild:


"We work tirelessly to ensure that all wild animals, whether living in captivity or in the wild, are treated with compassion and respect and are able to live their lives according to their needs. As a leading wildlife charity, we oppose the exploitation of wild animals in captivity and campaign to keep them where they belong – in the wild. We promote Compassionate Conservation to enhance the survival of threatened species in the wild and protect natural habitats while respecting the needs and safeguarding the welfare of individual animals. We seek to have a positive impact on animals in the wild and protect their ecosystems in perpetuity, for their own intrinsic value and for the critical roles they play within the natural world.":


We are a global art and environmental education charity with drawing, one of the oldest forms of communication, at its core. Founded by Artist, Jane Lee McCracken, to share her passions for drawing and wildlife, we partner with international wildlife charity Born Free, conservationists, artists, educators and cultural institutions. Through our art, education, exhibition and conservation fundraising projects we give children, communities and wildlife a voice. Watch our video and visit us at:

Support our global projects, help protect wildlife and give the gift of art and wildlife by donating or becoming a member here:


Shh it's a Tiger! 2013 Biro drawing © Jane Lee McCracken

Artist Jane Lee McCracken constructs intricate multi-layered Biro drawings, sculptures, installations and designs products.  Her work explores loss to both humans and animals generated by human destruction and is representational of both life's beauty and brutal reality. She is also the Founder and CEO of Drawing for the Planet global art, environmental education and conservation charity. 

Over the last decade, through her art she has raised funds for conservation organisations and delivered drawing and environmental education workshops to 1000's of people across the world. In 2019 she founded Where Did All the Animals Go? Project in partnership with Born Free and in 2021 founded Drawing for the Planet. Explore Jane's art:

Drawing for the Planet would like to thank all participating children, staff and communities.