February is recognized by couples around the world as the month of love. It is an opportunity to shower loved ones with gifts, as a token of our affection and appreciation. This month we at Safari.com are taking a different approach to Valentine's Day by celebrating our love for wildlife conservation. The heart of our mission is to educate and encourage people across the world to become ambassadors in conservation and positively impact the future of many endangered species across the world!Sadly, over time we have neglected to see how our carbon footprint has impacted the existence of plants and animals; an oversight that has seen the demise of many species across the world. The truth is, without each and every person pledging to do their bit in protecting each habitat where humans and animals coexist, we face the largest increase of endangered vertebrae our world has ever seen. With a rapid decline in the animal population as a result of poaching, trophy hunting, habitat loss and increased human population, so many animals are fighting for their survival, with some of Africa’s most majestic animals making the top of the endangered species list. Something to ponder… How would one experience a big 5 safari if rhino or elephant become extinct?We would like to encourage every person to volunteer in wildlife and conservation projects or donate funds to both local and international conservation organizations. These organizations recognize the importance of wildlife and actively get involved in their protection and sustainability. Each selfless act makes a huge difference in the goal of ensuring that nature is around for future generations to enjoy!
Like any relationship getting to know more about your significant other is essential for a healthy relationship. To figure out who they are and how best to love and cherish them. It's important to share and educate each other on your likes, dislikes, your pet peeves, and the things that make your heart sing. Conservation is no different, and while programs like David Attenborough ‘Planet Earth’ and BBC’s ‘Life’ are all great ways to learn about the wonders of the natural world there is so much more out there that we are unaware of, so much that isn't spoken about because it isn't exactly nice to hear, resulting in many of us being simply unaware of the different species of animals that are categorised as critically endangered. Sometimes Africa can feel a world away, more like a different planet than a different country - with a sense of magic and diversity that is unlike anywhere else in our world - but the truth is that these animals are in our world, on our planet and they need our help and we can’t let ourselves be guilty of letting the difficulties they face pass us by.Educate yourself - invest time, as you would into a new relationship getting to know the ins and outs of wildlife conservations and the threats that they oppose, even the smallest bit of insight into the topic is a step in the right direction. Information from various platforms and organization; both local and international can make a stirring impact on conservation; it can inspire you and others around you to make a change no matter what the scale may be - it's a very eye-opening experience and you'll be surprised about what you might learn.
Although conservation education is a step in the right direction, there are always more steps to take, and more ways to show your love for Africa, not just this valentine's day but every day. Conservation charities are monumental in keeping the number of endangered African species down. There are so many remarkable organizations, both in Africa and across the globe that are dedicated to protecting and safeguarding Africa’s most vulnerable wildlife, but they wouldn't be able to do it without your support. There are so many wonderful organizations to choose from and they can tell you just how your money is helping and how it will be spent. This makes you feel as though you are truly making a difference and should inspire you to want to help more. Like any good relationship, you have to ‘do your paperwork’ or your due diligence - with the best relationships being the ones with an even give-take ratio. These different conservation organizations allow you to have a balance give take relationship with your donations and the wild, informing you on just how you and your money is making a difference.With so many great conservation organizations out there how do you pick the right one? Easy, there are no right answers here. After doing a fair amount of research you'll see there are plenty of groups or NGO’s that you can get in touch with to donate to, you should pick the organization that resonates with you the most. The one that tugs on your heart string and ignites in you the desire to make a change. If you wish to have a nudge in the right direction here are some of our favorite charities to choose from;
- IRF: International Rhino Fund
IRF has been around for more than 25 years, with their sole focus being on the conservation of Rhino around the world. They operate mainly out of Africa and Asia as this is where most of the species in the world live. They have over 150 projects worldwide and an online shop which you can purchase anything from; trinkets to clothing to raise funds for the conservation of Rhinos. IRF is protecting and safeguarding all five-rhino species that are currently in danger.- Sumatran Rhino- Javan Rhino- The Greater One-Horned Rhino- Black Rhino- White RhinoRhino Poaching continues to be a problem but several measures have been taken to combat the war on these spectacular animals. Discover more here.
- WWF: The World Wildlife Fund
The WWF is the oldest most well-known conservation organization in the world and really need little introducing. They have been fighting conservation for decades as in one of the world leaders in making impactful changes to the lives of some many endangered species. Their efforts spread far and wide from The Atlantic, to Africa and even to Mexico and they are determined to support any animal that needs protection such as;- Tigers- Rhinos- Whales- Dolphins- Turtles- Elephants- Gorillaz
- AWF: The African Wildlife Foundation
AWF is a foundation which focuses on the implementation of local based communities projects and wildlife conservation plans infused into one environmental conservation organization. Creating a foundation focused on ensuring that all of Africa’s wildlife survives by putting safeguards in place, like ranger trainer and education and empowering local communities in their part they play in conservation.
One of the most important parts of a healthy relationship and some of the five official love languages is ’time spent’ and ‘acts of services’, these things help to make a personal impact on your significant other both in your life as well as in theirs. This valentine's day spoil the inhabitants of Africa with some personal one on one time. Yes, you can come to Africa and volunteer to help endangered animals, with various African safari conservation jobs on offer, you can make an impact and have an experience that will last you a lifetime at the same time. Use this time to explore other wonderful destinations Africa has to offer.No matter where you wish to get involved or how you wish to help there are organizations for everyone with some of the most popular being;- Wildlife Care and Rehabilitation- Wildlife Research and Management- Marine Conservation- Wildlife Veterinary- Wildlife Adventures Courses and experiences.Local Is LekkerIf you can't make a trip to Africa, never fear because you can show your love for wildlife conservation no matter where you are; charity begins at home. Stroll down to your local wildlife parks, centers, nature reserves and wildlife sanctuaries and see where and how you can get involved. Every country has these local organizations and all work hard in protecting the world we live in and all who inhabit it. These local organizations are a great step into the benefits of conservation and the impact you as an individual can make on the lives of animals and your world. Contact your local conservation organizations in your area today.Reduce, reuse, RecycleOne of the simplest ways to making a difference in the lives of animals both endangered and not is to reduce our carbon footprint. This takes very little effort just some habit changes and a little bit of planning. By making small changes to our way of life we can help protect and support the habitats of vulnerable wildlife; for instance, never buy products that are made from wood from the rainforests, recycle and buy eco-friendly products and recycle technological gadgets such as mobile phones and laptops as the mineral used in most of electrical goods which is minded in and around gorilla habitats. These small things are like things that should be part of your everyday relationship with the world; the things like picking your partners socks of the bedroom floor or ensuring their favorite snack is in the house. Don't be fooled by the little things, little things make up our world, our every day - they are the things that changed the world. So, start today - reduce, reuse, recycle.The survival of Africa’s wildlife depends on its relationship with people. We need to take our relationship with the earth, Mother Nature, and her inhabitants more seriously. Like all relationships, our affections and safeguards need to be consistent and come from a place of love and admiration. We need to protect and respect them and when better to start than today.