Land Rover and international wildlife charity, Born Free Foundation, have announced the opening of a vital new lion enclosure and education centre in Ensessakotteh, Ethiopia.

'The Tree House' Visitor and Education centre, which opens today, is a re-designed facility set to cater for thousands of visiting school children each year. It provides a base and classroom facilities which will help the team at Ensessakoteh carry out environmental education activities that include interactive games, role-playing and writing workshops, all focused on educating the next generation on the importance of conversation and care for animals.

Amongst the guests who attended today's launch, were: Actress and legendary conservationist, Virginia McKenna OBE; His Excellency, the former President of the FDRE, Girma Woldegioris; Dawud Mume Ali, Director General of Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority; and Adam M Roberts, CEO of the Born Free Foundation and Born Free USA.

Ensessakoteh, meaning 'Animal Foot Print' in Amharic, offers sanctuary to over seventy wild animals who have either been orphaned or confiscated from illegal trade or ownership. The centre is able to house the wildlife within 77-hectres of protected wilderness.

Land Rover has a unique history with the Born Free Foundation and its vehicles have played a key role in the charity's activities in Africa and beyond. Ensessakoteh has a Land Rover Defender on site, which assists in the everyday activities of the staff, from transporting food and equipment around the wilderness areas to supporting the day to day running of the Education Centre.

The work of Ensessakoteh is part of a commitment by Born Free to improve educational facilities and programmes in the area of conservation in Ethiopia. The charity is devoted to compassionate conservation and animal welfare, taking action to protect threatened species and stop individual animals suffering.

The team at Ensessakoteh conduct conservation programmes and environmental education programmes as well as helping the local government with wildlife management. The centre offers a peaceful haven for visitors, allowing them to enjoy the beautiful surroundings that still retain their natural environment.

Land Rover's Global Conservation Partnership with the Born Free Foundation reflects its integrated approach to securing global sustainability. The partnership brings together specialist knowledge, innovation and expertise, providing essential support to improve the lives of people, the environment and animals in Ethiopia and around the world.

Mark Cameron, Jaguar Land Rover Global Brand Experience Director said: "The redevelopment of the centre at Ensessakotteh is a project that Land Rover and Born Free have been working towards for some time. The facility will provide a protective environment to care for the wildlife. The centre will also play a vital role in educating young people about the importance of conservation and will make a real difference by spreading awareness about how people can adapt their lives and attitudes to ensure a sustainable future for man and wildlife alike."

Adam M. Roberts, Born Free CEO added, "The Born Free Foundation works dynamically and diligently the world over to conserve wildlife, stop suffering, and rescue individual animals in need. We can only accomplish our significant successes year after year with the strong support of vital partners such as Land Rover. Ethiopia's wild animals are more secure because Born Free and Land Rover are working together to ensure their well-being, and that is a partnership of which we will forever be proud."

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