A local papermaker with a background in primate behavior research is combining her two passions for the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund.
Walla Walla resident Holly Nelson, owner of handmade paper business Recycled Ideas, has formalized an agreement with the conservation organization, according to an announcement.
Through the partnership, Nelson will donate 100 percent of proceeds from sales of her “plantable gorillas” to the Fossey fund, which is dedicated to the continued study and survival of the mountain gorillas.
Recycled Ideas has also donated plantable gorillas to the agency. The gorillas will be included in adoption packages for Mother’s Day. Those who adopt a mama and baby gorilla will receive a set of five plantable gorillas to grow. The paper, made from 100 percent recycled materials and seeds, can be planted directly into the ground.
The Fossey organization was named for the late American primatologist who dedicated her work to the long-term study of the rare mountain gorilla.
Her vision continues in the remote Virunga Mountains of Rwanda.
It has also grown to support park ranger training, anti-poaching patrols, snare removal and continued research and education on mountain gorillas and habitat conservation.
Nelson became a full-time business owner in 2011. Before that she earned her Ph.D. in psychology. As a college professor, she taught classes in primate behavior at the University of New Hampshire, Bowdoin College and Whitman College.
Those interested in adopting gorillas can learn more at gorilla fund.org. To check out the plantable gorillas, visit recycledideas.etsy.com.