Committed to Elephants

In an unprecedented act, the biggest players in conservation joined forces to combat the massacre of African elephants. AWF and conservation partners announced a three-year, US$80 million Commitment to Action at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting last month to protect elephant populations—including curbing demand, stopping poaching, and preventing trafficking. This will multiply the impact of the anti-trafficking work AWF has already been doing for some time. AWF CEO Patrick Bergin made two additional commitments at CGI: one to build 15 conservation schools in key African landscapes and one to invest in conservation friendly African businesses.

A Question We Hope Not to Answer

Today there are about 470,000 elephants roaming the continent of Africa. But, if current rates of poaching continue—an estimated 35,000 elephants were killed in 2012 alone—someone could be asking you this question in your lifetime. Merciless poachers continue to kill elephants to harvest their ivory in order to create trinkets. Without intervention, these rates of poaching will lead to the extinction of this iconic species, which would be a loss to not just the continent of Africa, but the whole world. We developed an interactive storybook experience to remind us all about the beauty and importance of Africa’s treasured wildlife.

// Learn what this commitment means to conservation

// Experience the story

Excelling in Education

Tracking Technology

India’s Passion for Africa’s Wildlife

A Dollar Goes a Long Way

AWF rebuilt the dilapidated Manyara Ranch Primary School in Tanzania, equipping it with a cafeteria, dormitories, and infirmary, and, more recently, a state-of-the-art IT lab, with the help of the Annenberg Foundation. The updated school has also equipped students with the tools to succeed. This past school year, 96 percent of students passed the national Primary School Leaving Exam to move on to secondary school—a statistic that is nearly unheard of in the country. The school additionally received a district education award for the fifth time.

AWF’s great apes director, Jef Dupain, led a team of rangers into the heart of the Dja Faunal Reserve in Cameroon with the aim of familiarizing people with how to use the CyberTracker ecological monitoring technology. Poachers in the area have become exceedingly aggressive, and the new CyberTracker units allow rangers to record species sightings and poaching evidence in real time to inform patrol decisions. During this first trip, the team arrested 15 poachers. Dupain notes the rangers here are dedicated, but AWF’s “support is needed.”

It’s always moving to see young people passionate about conservation at a young age. Design student India Hambloch, who is half–South African, was so moved by the rising poaching rates in the country that she was inspired to create a series of posters depicting the terrible results of wildlife crime on the country. She manipulated the Big Five, the most popular game species, on South African currency to show the effects of human greed on Africa’s iconic species.

Fundraising platform Dollar Per Month chose AWF to be one of three charities for its October challenge. AWF is honored to have been highlighted, along with two other non-profits—Dollar Per Month used strict criteria for its selections, including transparency and fiscal responsibility. Donations come from the Dollar Per Month community and are distributed based on a voting system. If you support AWF, visit Dollar Per Month and help us stay in the running by giving a dollar and a vote.

// Pay a visit to our Manyara Ranch students

// Read about Jef’s experience

// Check out her entire poster series

// Vote for AWF

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© Photo Credits: Julie Larsen Maher/WCS, Sanky, AWF, Teeku Patel, India Hambloch, Marius Coetzee/