Brazil has opened up the first sanctuary in Latin America for elephants previously in captivity. It will house as many as 50 of the giant animals.

Elephant Sanctuary Brazil is located in the central Brazilian state of Mato Grosso and was founded by the US-based non-profit organization Global Sanctuary for Elephants.

Its two first residents, Maia and Guida, two elephants that spent the past four decades in captivity, already arrived at the sanctuary, which was settled on Brazil because there was a grassroots effort to get it started and volunteers ready to assist. In addition, in Brazil there is a lot of support for protecting the future of former circus elephants and great public awareness of the issues surrounding the animals.