In July 2018 I (Paula) am going to canoe down the Zambezi River.
Here is why this is so important to me.
When I look at the body of an elephant, I see history. I see nature at its best and I see an amazing animal that deserves complete protection and respect.
When I look into the eye of an elephant I see pure majestic wisdom, I see deep emotion and I see a soft gentle heart.
When I see elephants being killed for their tusks, or for a photograph or to protect crops I am pained beyond words, because it makes no sense to me.
I have decided to dedicate my time to working on this cause. It is extremely important to me because I want to see all animals and people living peacefully together whilst also protecting the environment.
We are losing spectacular wildlife at an alarming rate, all for the sake of ‘medicine’ or a ‘trophy’. This is especially the case in parts of Africa.
Native communities need our help to provide education on the ground level.
This education is essential because the local communities aren’t aware of how important these species are to the overall environment.
“Humans are behind the current rate of species extinction, which is at least 100–1,000 times higher than nature intended.” (1)
This is a frightening statement. It makes me feel ashamed to be human having this much of an impact on the rate that animals are moving towards extinction.
It needs our attention and commitment across the board, immediately.
My First Step Towards Making A Difference
In July this year I am undertaking a sponsored canoe down the Zambezi river.
I am taking part in the adventure to raise money for the education of children in Zambia. This education will include animal conservation where the young people (and consequently their communities) will be taught about human-wildlife conflict and how to live in harmony with their local wildlife.
Kids in Zambia get free education up to Year 8. After that, they have to fund their education themselves.
This means the awareness and understanding of the impact of losing critical species goes unknown and unlearnt.
The education I am keen for them to access consists of:
- Learning about the animals and the planet
- Self-sustainable living (with no impact on the environment)
- Human wildlife conflict
- Animal conservation
- They will even join a conservation club at school!
This education is completely essential to them, their families and to their future in the local community.
“Over the last few decades, conservationists have come to understand just how central community involvement is to wildlife conservation success—and how important it is for communities to actively steward the natural resources around them to improve economic and social well-being.” (1)
I’m proud to think that my efforts will enable one young person to access a full education in Zambia and learn exactly how important their natural habitat and surrounding species are to them.
If a sponsored canoe down the Zambezi River interests you and you would like to get involved in providing children with this essential education, take a look here: https://www.thezambianconnection.co.uk
We can make a difference if we put our mind to it and commit. Every small step adds up to significant change. Who are we NOT to make a difference?
- World Wildlife Fund: https://www.worldwildlife.org/initiatives/wildlife-conservation