BENEFITING: ENDANGERED SPECIES PROTECTION FUND
I have loved elephants since I was teenager. Many people do, and I think it has something to do with their size, their intelligence, their family structure that is similar to our own. It's amazing that they are very nearly extinct. By now most of us know that elephants are shot and killed by the thousands for their tusks. It has been happening for over 100 years, and we are now at the very last remaining elephants. People are collectively willing to wipe out the species in order to make figurines, trinkets, and sculptures out of the tusks.
I just cannot let it happen. I believe that if more of us enter the fight and make an effort, even a small one, we will get to a point where the last elephant populations will be stable and protected within wildlife parks and conservancies.
This is why I started a new nonprofit in the USA. Endangered Species Protection Fund. We do the same things that large nonprofits do, only we do it in a micro version that is easily accounted for, with no waste, little overhead, and complete transparency.
Our goals are simple but not easy: demand reduction and improved wildlife law enforcement.
I have been working directly with rangers near Tsavo West park in Kenya. ESPFund has already raised money to provide uniforms and outdoor equipment. I also taught the rangers first aid and karate. It was fun and entertaining, but most of all it was useful. They picked up the first aid training faster than any EMT I've ever worked with. And they loved the karate.
These men and women stay up all night to hunt down poachers. They leave their families to run into the bushes and stop wild animals from being killed. They give up precious time from earning a living so that they can band together and save their country's heritage. Kenya without elephants? Not on my watch, and certainly not on theirs.
The rangers are really trying, but they need help. We are not just giving handouts and walking away. We are supporting what the rangers started on their own, and giving them what just isn't available in the bush of Kenya to villagers. Uniforms, training, a vehicle. They need it badly right away. They not only protect elephants, but they are also doing community outreach trying to reduce demand and teach others that Kenya's elephants are also Kenya's heritage. Please help me help them. And in doing so, we help ourselves. We won't have to be the generation that killed off elephants. We can show that domination of our surroundings will now be proven by compassion and empathy instead of destruction.