Last Chance for Elephants
The fight to stop wild elephants from going extinct is reaching a crucial stage. While various estimates and predictions exist as to exactly ‘when’ they will all be gone, the reality is this:
If the killing continues at the current rate, our children will never get to see an elephant in the wild
Care for the Wild is determined to do everything we can to prevent this awful tragedy from happening. Under the banner of our Last Chance for Elephants campaign, we are tackling the issue in various ways. Here are some of our key campaign actions:
Prince William Attacks Illegal Wildlife Trade
It’s good to see Prince William continuing to pile pressure onto the illegal wildlife trade during a speech to the World Bank in the United States. We said:
“What kind of a society are we which allows a minority to extinguish some of the most amazing animals ever to walk on this planet for the sake of a trinket on the mantelpiece? It’s absurd and disgusting. We’ve all grown up loving lions, tigers, elephant and rhinos, in stories if not for real. They are part of our world, and if we let them die then we are all responsible, and we will all suffer for their loss.”
Read our full statement.
Chinese Embassy Protest – January 2015
We joined Action for Elephants and hundreds of caring people at another protest outside the Chinese Embassy in London on January 24th. The protesters called on China to take urgent steps to help stop the slaughter of elephants for their ivory. We called on China to close its ivory-carving factories and ivory retail outlets, and to completely shut down its ivory market. As the world’s leading consumer of ivory (over 70% of illegal ivory makes its way to China, to be carved into trinkets for affluent Chinese), China has the biggest role and responsibility in ensuring the survival of elephants in Africa.
Hope for Wildlife
Are you concerned about the poaching of elephants and rhinos? Worried about the future of lions and tigers? So are we – so we held a debate at the Imperial War Museum, Manchester on 28th October.
Nicky Campbell, esteemed BBC presenter, Born Free Foundation President Will Travers OBE, and Care for the Wild Policy Advisor Dominic Dyer debated the key issues, and money was raised to support rangers on the ground in Africa.
Global March for Elephants and Rhinos
We were proud to take part in the biggest ever global wildlife demonstration. The event took place in over 130 cities around the world on World Animal Day, Saturday October 4th 2014, and we helped organise the London event. Take a look at our Global March for Elephants and Rhinos page for videos and pictures.
Global Auction for Wildlife
Sitting alongside the Global March for Elephants and Rhinos, we ran the Global Auction for Wildlife, an online auction which aimed to raise a lot of money for wildlife projects around the world. We invited organisations, charities and celebrities around the world to donate items to be sold, with the money going to their favourite projects. The auction is now closed, but we may hold another one soon!
Protest at Wildlife Crime Summit
Following the success of the protest outside the Chinese Embassy, we teamed up with Action For Elephants UK again for another event.
The Wildlife Crime Summit in London was a massive event in terms of the impact it could have on the fight against poaching. We were outside the summit with our banners to make sure those making the decisions know that we are watching!
We also worked with our local school, Southwater Infant Academy, to produce ‘Southwater the Elephant’. Southwater carried a message from Year 2 and also from all the children of the world – please save the elephants for us!
Amazingly, Southwater was invited into the Summit where he was presented to Foreign Secretary William Hague by two Care for the Wild supporters, Imani and Tuni Hinstridge. Southwater was presented to all the delegates, and is now being displayed in the Foreign Office.
“As adults, we can sit and watch the news as we hear about elephants and rhinos being poached, about lions and tigers being killed so their body parts can be used in fake medicines. We can choose to act, or we can just sit and watch. But as children, the next generation don’t have a chance to act – they must rely on us to save these animals, otherwise there will be none left by the time these children grow up.” Philip Mansbridge, Care for the Wild.
Click here to read Care for the Wild’s response to the Summit
Listen to Philip Mansbridge talking about the the illegal wildlife trade on Voice of Russia Radio
Read more about Care for the Wild’s Wildlife Crime Manifesto below.
Last Chance Appeal
Care for the Wild has funded crucial anti-poaching patrols in Kenya for many years. The work they do is vital to protect elephants, and other animals, in the Tsavo and Maasai Mara National Parks. Please support our work with a donation to our Last Chance for Elephants Appeal. Thank you!
Peaceful Protest – Chinese Embassy, London
It is an unavoidable fact that China plays a major role in the attaining of ivory, and thus the killing of elephants. But as a country that could cause their extinction, China also has the power to stop it – but they must act powerfully, and they must act now.
A peaceful protest was organised for outside the Chinese Embassy on Saturday January 25th, 11am. The aim was not to criticise, but to show China that people care. Care for the Wild supported the event, and our CEO Philip Mansbridge and Policy Advisor Dominic Dyer were key speakers.
Philip Mansbridge told reporters:
“The time to save elephants is now. Otherwise, quite simply, it will be too late. The amount of elephants slaughtered each year for their ivory is just horrific, all for pointless ornaments, chopsticks and jewellery. China holds the key to stopping this with some strong global leadership, an action that would show the world that environmental responsibility and rapid growth don’t have to be unrelated.”
You can see a gallery of images from the protest here:
Read about the ivory protest in the Daily Express
Read about the ivory trade and the protest in the Independent
If you would like to display the protest posters, you can download them here:
Wildlife Crime Summit: Care for the Wild’s Manifesto
A major international Summit on Wildlife Crime is taking place in mid February, in London. With the presence and backing of Prince Charles, Prince William, William Hague and the British Government, along with representatives from the most influential countries from around the world, this is a real chance to take some decisive action to stop the poaching of animals like elephants.
Listen – Philip Mansbridge talks about the ivory trade on Voice of Russia Radio
Care for the Wild has been campaigning on this issue for some time, and strongly support this Summit, and applaud the UK government for taking this step. What we do not want to see though is a lot of talk followed by little or no decisive action.
Therefore on behalf of our supporters, we have drawn up a Manifesto which lays down six key commitments we believe the UK government should make following the summit. None are outrageous asks, but all would make a significant difference in the fight against poaching.
Care for the Wild’s Illegal Wildlife Trade Summit Manifesto
With the forthcoming London Summit on Illegal Wildlife Trade in February 2014, the UK government is in a unique position to show global leadership on fighting wildlife crime – as a leading member of the EU, G8 and Commonwealth and through its close relationship with the United States. As a registered Defra stakeholder and Wildlife Trade JLG member, Care for the Wild International, along with the undersigned leading global wildlife NGOs, call on the UK government to openly commit to the six outcomes of this manifesto at the London Summit.
UK leadership in the global fight against wildlife crime
We call on the UK government to use the London Summit on International Wildlife Trade to give a clear declaration that it will take a leadership role in tackling the illegal trade in international wildlife, clearly backed up by a long term political commitment and financial resources.
International Aid Budget
We call on the UK government to pledge a minimum of 0.5% of its annual International Aid budget to tackling the illegal wildlife trade. Funding should be used across a diverse platform of key projects, but should allow for sufficient provision to develop sustainable income projects within communities to give a long term alternative to poaching whilst alleviating poverty issues. Whilst it is noted and commended that the UK recently announced a £10m fund from DFID to help tackle illegal wildlife trade, a more significant 0.5% commitment would make significant headway into the key issues in this area.
We call on the UK government to use the expertise of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, British Council and UK Trade and Investment and to work with NGOs to deliver a programme of consumer demand reduction initiatives for illegal wildlife products around the world.
UK Military Expertise
We call on the UK government to utilise the expertise, manpower and equipment available through its armed forces (working with both serving and retired military personnel) to support African nations in their fight against the illegal poaching of elephants and rhinos in Africa.
National Wildlife Crime Unit and Metropolitan Police Wildlife Crime Unit
We call on the UK government to give a clear, long term public funding commitment to the National Wildlife Crime Unit and the Metropolitan Police Wildlife Crime Unit, to increase their manpower and resources, and to extend their presence and capabilities.
Ivory Stockpiles and Stockpile Sales
We call on the UK government to give a clear declaration that it will oppose any future sale by any nation of their stockpiles of ivory, or any other similar product, including rhino horn, and that the UK will use its influence in the international community to ensure other countries within CITES support this ‘no to stockpile sales’ position.
Read our full Illegal Wildlife Trade Manifesto
We’ll update you after the Summit to look at how many of these commitments have been made.
Petition to UK Government
We need governments around the world to focus on the issue of wildlife crime and poaching. From our point of view, it would be a tragedy if we allow key species like the elephant to go extinct. But the reality is that poaching on its current scale is also having a major impact on the lives of humans.
In addition to the many wildlife rangers who have lost their lives, wildlife crime is now linked with violence, murder and terrorism, because of the huge amounts of money involved. The terrorist group Al Shabaab, responsible for the Nairobi shopping centre attack in 2013, has been linked to poaching.
For this reason, Care for the Wild has been asking the UK government to divert Foreign Aid money into the fight against wildlife crime.
- Please sign the petition here.
- To read an opinion piece from our CEO on why the government should act, click here.
On Monday 23rd December the Government announced that they would release £10m towards the fight against illegal wildlife crime, from the DFID development budget. This is great news, but it isn’t enough to have the impact we need. Whilst we applaud this commitment and thank the government for listening to us, we will still push for more – remember, just 0.5% of the UK’s overseas aid budget would fund the entire African Elephant Action Plan. So, please sign the petition, ensure that your MP signs the EDM, and let’s keep the pressure up to save the elephants.
UK Government Early Day Motion
Politicians, led by Zac Goldsmith, are also calling on the UK Government to divert Foreign Aid to fight wildlife crime. Zac, with support from Care for the Wild, has drafted an Early Day Motion (EDM), which aims to gain support from MPs on all sides for this cause.
- Check to see if your local MP has signed the EDM here.
- If not, please tell them about it and ask them to sign. You can find contact details here.
We have teamed up with top advertising agency JWT to produce a stunning new campaign, The Tooth Fairy!
Many people believe that an elephant’s tusks are like teeth. In Asia, this means many people think that if you take the tusks, they will just grow back. This is wrong – to take an elephant’s tusks, you must kill it.
Therefore we have teamed up with the Tooth Fairy who wants to help save ‘the biggest teeth of all’.
- Visit the gorgeous Tooth Fairy website here.
- Read the Tooth Fairy blog here
- Please share it with any friends or family who have wobbly-toothed children!