Free the Bears

Free the Bears was founded in 1995 by a Perth grandmother, Mary Hutton. Free the Bears has helped rescue over 950 bears from the world's most vulnerable bear species - sun, moon and sloth bears. In January 2020, Mary was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia by the Governor-General of Australia for her services to conservation & the environment.

We provide lifelong care to hundreds of rescued sun & moon bears in our sanctuaries in Laos, Cambodia & Vietnam. Mary Christmas currently lives with Noy at our Luang Prabang Wildlife Sanctuary.


Free the Bears works with communities, schools and organisations across Asia to change attitudes and raise awareness of the illegal wildlife trade. We work with universities and other institutions who conduct critical research and we partner with government and law enforcement agencies.

As well as rescue and rehabilitation, we tackle the threats to Asia's bears - habitat loss, the illegal wildlife trade and bear bile farms. For as long as there are bears in need, Free the Bears will strive to stop their suffering.