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Months of hard work and preparation reached a crescendo for an all-female team of intrepid adventurers at Sibaya Casino and Entertainment Kingdom on Women’s Day, 9 August 2016.
The women, pioneers of the Elephant Ignite Expedition – a quest to conserve Africa’s elephants – have finally commenced the gruelling 10 000 kilometre journey from Sibaya in KwaZulu-Natal to Kenya. Their departure was marked with much fanfare as friends, family, members of the media and other key stakeholders gathered at Sibaya to wish them well.
During their epic expedition, traversing 10 African countries, they will raise funds to elephant conservation and engage with various research organisations, conservation bodies, and political and tribal leaders to help foster knowledge-sharing between generations and nationalities.
The expedition will be filmed for a web-series for the award-winning Earth Touch website: www.earthouchnews.com. The series will document not only the journey, but tell the stories of the various organisations and people who are truly making a difference in the world of elephant conservation.
The epic journey will be underpinned by community upliftment, youth education, public awareness of the plight of African’s declining population, and a fundraising drive to support the dedicated non-profit organisations that are doing such amazing work to protect the elephants.
“The projects and organisations we will be visiting all provide conservation as well as community upliftment and educational programmes especially amongst the youth. We hope to weave an invisible web, linking together these conservation projects in order to expand their support base and ongoing funding through public awareness,” said Carla Geyser from Blue Sky Society Trust.
The Elephant Ignite Expedition team comprises Carla Geyser (KZN), Yolande Kruger (KZN), Penny Parker (Cape Town), Bronwyn Laing (KZN), Shannon Saunders (KZN), Isabel Wolfe-Gillespie (Botswana) Nicky Rurtherfoord (KZN), Nikki Williamson (KZN), Yvette Taylor (KZN), Glenda Thompson (KZN), Ildiko Bischot (Netherlands), Natalie Dumbrill (UK) and Kennedy Zakheer (USA).
All of the women have dedicated themselves and put their lives on hold to bring the campaign to fruition. Their incredible journey will take approximately 100 days.
Caring members of the public and concerned corporate citizens can also pledge support for their bold campaign by making a donation. The expedition members self-fund their participation costs.