LSV was established in 2003 originally as a project in ecotourism. With the objective to provide permanent hospitality services (food, showers/ bathroom, and accommodation) to the adventure tourism industry that transit on bicycles down the old road known as "the world´s most dangerous road" from the city of La Paz to Los Yungas.
The property (located a small distance from the township of Yolosa, by the Coroico River of the North Yungas region of La Paz, Bolivia) was established in this location strategically to complement this type of industry. However without notice or plan LSV evolved into a vital link in warning all of the effects of animal trafficking in the region of Yungas, and the entirety of the north of the country.
Approximately one year later (2004), a capuchin monkey and two parrots were rescued.
Reflecting upon this incident, the necessity to contribute to conservation of fauna and flora was evident. From here on in LSV decided to redefine their objectives and focus their efforts and energy to this cause. By limiting the level of tourists to that which will sustain the economical functions of LSV, primary focus can be given to this cause.
LSV Animal Refuge started it´s operations with a small number of animals that were voluntarily handed over to the refuge. Before the end of 2007 LSV established a relationship with the organization Animales SOS, this same institution made the case for rescue of a 4 month old Andean Bear, Jukumari. From here on LSV received a higher quantity of animals that were the result of illegal trafficking.
Following this LSV initiated contact with the Department of Biodiversity (DGB), dependent of the Environmental Ministry. Corresponding to become informed of the rules and regulations and to coordinate a relationship which marks the beginning of an operation that has achieved highly effective results.
In 2009 LSV elaborated and presented a management plan to the to DGB. This document was approved that same year. In 2008 LSV acquired the certification to proceed as a non-profit organization, approved by the Environmental Department of Affairs and the La Paz Government. The repercussions of this were two-fold. First, LSV was able to accept new animals more easily within government guidelines. Second, LSV is now obligated to accept any animals intercepted by the government.
Over the past four years, illegal animal trafficking has drastically increased in Bolivia. As a result, the animal population at LSV has more than quadrupled in the past three years to approximately 350 animals (December 2012). We now receive new animals at least monthly, and often weekly.