For pastoralists like the #Samburu, more grass means more food for their cattle—one reason indigenous communities have begun relating to elephants, animals long feared, in a new way. The loss of elephants has a ripple effect on other animals and the people co existing with them. Elephants are the ecosystem’s “engineers” who feed on low brush and bulldoze small trees, promoting growth of grasses, which in turn attract bulk grazers like buffalo, endangered Grevy’s zebras, eland, and oryx, themselves prey for carnivores: lions, cheetahs, wild dogs, leopards.
The Samburu are the force behind northern Kenya’s Reteti Elephant Sanctuary (@r.e.s.c.u.e), the first ever community-owned and run elephant sanctuary in Africa. The sanctuary provides a safe place for injured elephants to heal and later, be returned back to the wild. You can support this incredible place and the people who protect wildlife. Make a $10 contribution in support of Reteti for a chance to win a trip to Kenya, see Dave Matthews in concert and take home Dave's guitar with @prizeo (Link in profile). Not only will you be helping care for orphaned baby elephants and strengthening community ties, you’ll also have a chance to win a life-changing trip to see the sanctuary in person. The first $10,000 in funds raised will be generously matched by Elephant Gems (@elephantgems).
Reteti operates in partnership with Conservation International (@conservationorg) who provide critical operational support and work to scale the Reteti community-centered model to create even bigger, lasting impacts worldwide.
Photo by @amivitale.
- Ami Vitale
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