30, 000 elephants are killed annually. That means one every 15 minutes.
Most South Africans are passionate about nature conservation. But what can we all do about it? For the first time in the world, an intrepid group of women explorers, have decided to bring the global spotlight on the plight of these gentle creatures and the people who protect them by embarking on an epic expedition across Africa.
The Elephant Ignite Expedition departs on Women’s Day on the 9th August this year, and plans to traverse 10,000 km through 10 African countries, starting in KwaZulu Natal (from the Sibaya Casino and Entertainment Centre) and ending in Kenya.
Founder and expedition leader from Blue Sky Society Trust, Carla Geyser says that after spending months dedicated to research and planning, so many conservation leaders and likeminded sponsors have come on board to support the initiative.
“We all believe that it will not only ignite a global interest in the expedition and conservation, but will also translate into real, practical actions for saving elephants,” she says.
“This epic journey will be underpinned by community upliftment, youth education, public awareness of the plight of African’s declining population, and a fundraising drive to support the dedicated non-profit organisations that are doing such amazing work to protect the elephants,” she adds.
Along the journey, the Elephant Ignite Expedition will engage with the various research organisations, current conservation, political and tribal leaders and foster knowledge-sharing between generations and nationalities.
“The projects and organisations the expedition will be visiting all provide conservation as well as community upliftment and educational programmes especially amongst the youth,” says Geyser.
“The expedition will weave an invisible web, linking together these conservation projects in order to expand their support base and ongoing funding through public awareness.”
The expedition will be filmed for a web-series for the award-winning Earth Touch website: www.earthouchnews.com The series will document not only the journey, but tell the stories of the various organisations and people who are truly making a difference in the world of elephant conservation.