Final Chance to Donate in 2011!

We can't fit all of AWF's achievements from this past year into this space, but the monthly highlights below show just how far your support went in helping Africa's wildlife and wild lands in 2011! And it's not too late to further help the continent's elephants, mountain gorillas, rhinos, and other species this year. Please consider making a year-end, tax-deductible donation to AWF. You'll be able to ring in the New Year with the satisfaction of having done all you can to help protect Africa's species and ecosystems. Here's to another year of saving Africa's wildlife, together.

AWF Kicks Off New Year With Four Stars

This fall, America's largest independent charity evaluator gave us the coveted four-star rating—for the 10th year in a row! "This 'exceptional' designation differentiates AWF from its peers and demonstrates to the public it is worthy of their trust," said Ken Berger, Charity Navigator's president and CEO. Indeed, the rating puts us into an elite category—fewer than 1% of rated charities have received at least 10 consecutive four-star evaluations, indicating that AWF consistently executes its mission in a fiscally responsible way and outperforms most other charities in America.

// Make a special tax-deductible gift today

// Visit AWF's Charity Navigator profile

January: Beautiful Babies

February: Fun with Disney

March: A New Mother and Her Babies

April: Join the Cause for 'African Cats'

Two female rhinos were born in Zambia's Mosi-Oa-Tunya Park in January. The calves were born to two of the cows AWF helped relocate there after all but one of the park's previous white rhinos were killed by poachers. With more than 405 rhinos poached in 2011, our fight to save Africa's rhinos continues.

When Disney selected AWF's bonobo program as one of five conservation projects its Friends for Change: Project Green campaign would fund, we asked our loyal supporters to help us out. And you didn't let us down! Your votes on the Friends for Change website ultimately secured AWF an award of $100,000!

In March, we celebrated the first of two sets of mountain gorilla twins born this year. Mountain gorilla Kabatwa of the Hirwa Family Group seemed at ease with her new set of twins. At the time, only five other sets of twins had been recorded in the past 40 years.

AWF supporters again went the extra mile in April, when we asked you to become a part of the "African Cats" community on Causes.com. Those who saw Disneynature's film during opening week helped get a portion of ticket sales donated to conserve a critical savanna landscape for lions in Kenya.

// View photos of the newborns on Facebook

// Learn about AWF's bonobo conservation work

// Read IGCP's blog post

// Learn about the "See 'African Cats,' Save the Savanna" program

May: New School Provides Incentive for Sustaining Landscape

June: 25,000 New Trees Boost Mau Forest Restoration

July: Birthday Party at the Zoo!

August: Ivory Burning Spotlights Poaching

AWF in May opened a new school in Zambia's Sekute community in the Kazungula Heartland. In a chiefdom where 80% of the people are illiterate, more than 105 pupils are now enrolled. The school provides an incentive for the community to set aside a wildlife conservancy and protect wildlife dispersal corridors.

More than 25 percent of the Mau Forest in Kenya's Rift Valley has been lost to logging, burning, and farming, creating an ecological disaster. Through a restoration project with the Interim Coordinating Secretariat, Kenya Wildlife Service, and Kenya Forest Service, AWF planted 25,000 new trees and is revitalizing this once-pristine forest.

Zoos are great partners to conservation organizations like ours. So it's no wonder we chose to celebrate our 50th Anniversary at Chicago's Brookfield Zoo! This summer, AWF hosted close to 900 supporters at a special member's day at Brookfield, featuring zookeeper chats on African animals and a fun-filled BBQ.

In August, we reported on a public ivory burning conducted by the member countries of the Lusaka Agreement, a transnational accord that helps protect endangered African wildlife. "We strongly advise all nations to step up vigilance in their anti-poaching efforts," said AWF President Helen Gichohi, who attended the event.

// Watch a video of the new Lupani school

// Learn more about this important forest

// See photos from the event

// Help us put an end to
elephant poaching

September: AWF Trivia

October: What's Black and White and Needs a Lot of Land?

November: Women, Drivers of Change

December: A Heated Dialogue

In September, we tested readers' wildlife knowledge with this item: AWF will soon assist a local organization in this year's West African giraffe census. Rangers will identify and count each giraffe in the Regional Parc W Heartland. But how do they differentiate between the giraffes?

AWF is working with communities in our Samburu Heartland to establish a wildlife corridor between Buffalo Springs National Park and Shaba National Reserve. This effort is a result of our Grevy's zebra research. After collaring and tracking the movements of five individuals, we found they were using a wide range of land.

Women in Africa can be influential drivers of change for improved conservation stewardship. In November, AWF posted a video on our website on how we empower women to initiate and manage a variety of enterprises that, in addition to delivering economic benefits, also help the wildlife with which they share their land.

While Africa contributes minimally to carbon emissions, climatologists contend it will suffer disproportionately severe consequences from climate change. That's why AWF participated in the recent UN Climate Change Conference. Throughout Africa, we combat climate change by working with communities to minimize demand for wood fuel and promote sustainable land use practices.

// Answer on Facebook

// Learn about AWF's work to conserve the Grevy's Zebra

// Watch the video now

// Take a look at AWF's approach to climate change

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AWF Annual Report

Read AWF's 2010 Annual Report in English or French!

AWF Adoptions

Give a gift and help save African wildlife in peril by adopting an African animal.

AWF Safaris

Who hasn't dreamed of going on a wildlife-viewing safari to Africa? Plan your trip with AWF.

The African Wildlife Foundation, together with the people of Africa, works to ensure the wildlife and wild lands of Africa will endure forever.

Please visit www.awf.org to learn more.

© Photo Credits: Billy Dodson, Charity Navigator, Becky Walter, ©Disneynature, Kathleen Fitzgerald, John Andrews, Helen Gichohi, Paul Muoria, Mohamed Hashim, Max Thabiso Edkins