We admire elephants in part because they demonstrate what we consider the finest of human traits: Empathy, self-awareness, and social intelligence. But the way we treat them puts on display the very worst of human behavior

– Graydon Carter


Free All Captive Elephants (FACE), is a dedicated nonprofit organization working to rescue suffering elephants held captive in circuses and roadside zoos in North America. Our work is VITAL in getting captive elephants to accredited sanctuaries.  FACE is committed to getting elephants to sanctuaries accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS). GFAS is the gold standard for sanctuaries.

The work of FACE is VITAL in getting captive elephants to the sanctuaries

waiting and ready to receive them.


*** Kristin Leppert, Program Director – Wildlife, North, Central and South America 

of the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS), explains:

The Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries recognizes and supports true sanctuaries that provide the highest quality of care for animals and exhibit ethical and operational excellence. GFAS Accredited Performing Animal Welfare Society in San Andreas, California and the Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, Tennessee are prime examples of true sanctuaries offering rescued elephants what they need: acres to roam, lakes to enjoy and most importantly, the company of their own species.” 

“True sanctuaries are not places animals go to die.

True sanctuaries are where once captive elephants go to LIVE.”

Robin Vitulle – FACE President/Cofounder, Interview, and chat with Lek Chailert – Founder Save Elephant Foundation and Elephant Nature Park (ENP), in Chiang Mai, Thailand. December, 2022.
Seeing firsthand how TRUE SANCTUARY heals the physical wounds, and emotional trauma that elephants endure while made to GIVE RIDES, LOGGING, STREET BEGGING, ZOO CAPTIVITY, CIRCUS PERFORMING, and other forms of human entertainment, was quite a beautiful thing to witness and is what we hope for all elephants still suffering across the world.

Meeting the magnificent elephants that have been individually rescued here was truly incredible. Seeing how they get to roam freely, without any intimidation or fear was wonderful to see. Witnessing how they blossom into the elephants they were born to be and forming new family herds was deeply emotional. This is what elephants need to thrive. Seeing what can be done here in Thailand and here in the United States, gives us the determination to get more suffering elephants OUT OF CIRCUSES and into TRUE SANCTUARY.

*ENP is an ethical rescue sanctuary that DOES NOT ALLOW any riding, bathing, painting or ANY form of forced interaction with visitors.  The programs offered at ENP are in place to educate and teach volunteers about caring properly for elephants and to advance the work that is VITAL to saving more captive elephants made to entertain and work in harsh and abusive situations.  The ULTIMATE GOAL is for elephants to be allowed to remain in the wild and never be captured and held captive for human entertainment.  

Bringing the awareness needed to spread knowledge throughout the world for suffering captive elephants is the KEY to bringing the CHANGE that will benefit elephants going forward so they can live their lives in peace without the brutality of captivity and human entertainment. NEVER RIDE AN ELEPHANT. NEVER SUPPORT CIRCUSES with animals.  Support organizations that work to bring awareness to help STOP the atrocities happening to elephants, and work to get suffering elephants into TRUE SANCTUARIES.  NEVER attend any performance or facility where elephants are forced to perform, paint, bathe or give rides

*Although everything that was experienced on this journey to Thailand will certainly add to the work of Free All Captive Elephants, all expenses for Robin to travel to Thailand was paid by her own personal funds. No donations to Free All Captive Elephants were used.  


The "Breaking" of Baby Elephants

The reality is that elephants must go through a training called, “breaking”, “the crush” and “phajaan”.  Different words are used for the same purpose. In the United States it’s known as “breaking”.  They will eventually give in after their spirits are broken. Physically and emotionally, they give in to the torture. Baby elephants are put through this brutality in order to use them for circuses, TV shows, elephant riding, zoos and any type of human entertainment you see.  Elephants are wild animals and would never allow riders, perform or otherwise interact with humans naturally.  For the rest of their lives in captivity after they are BROKEN, they will continue to be beaten in order for them to obey.

NEVER ride an elephant!

Baby elephants must go through a “breaking” to be “circus ready”. The brutality involved in this training is pure torture. Eventually, the baby elephant gives in… their spirits are BROKEN…When you decide to ride an elephant, or go to a circus, in essence you are agreeing that this is OK.  


Circus Tracking

CIRCUS TRACKING is VITAL in helping elephants suffering in circuses. Where are Viola and Isa? Bunny and Libby? Betty and Bo? Okha, Kosti and Megue? LuLu, Chang and Zola? …and numerous others. What REALLY happened to sweet…”Click on photo to view full story


FACE works continuously with legislators around the country to improve the conditions and protections for elephants on both the state and federal levels TEAPSPA Help Free All Captive Elephants (FACE)…”Click on photo to view full story

Asha’s Story

This is Asha’s story… Asha is a 39-year-old African female elephant who was born in Zimbabwe somewhere between 1982-83. Asha lost her entire family in a horrific slaughter orchestrated by the government of Zimbabwe in 1984…”Click on photo to view full story

Our Mission is to provide Education, Intervention, and Litigation, that will lead to Sanctuary of ALL Elephants Inhumanely held in Captivity in Circuses and Zoos in North America.

Donate with confidence knowing Free All Captive Elephants has earned the Candid GuideStar GOLD Seal of Transparency.

What YOU Can Do to Help

Free All Captive Elephants, Inc. (FACE) is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. To further our mission of education, intervention and litigation, please DONATE.  Your donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.