Posts Tagged With: youth

Will there be rhino horn under the tree?

In 2013, sadly the most popular Christmas gift in Vietnam was rhino horn. The use of horn, as well as other rare animal products is deeply embedded in Vietnamese culture, and is a current trend of a luxury item within the country’s elite.

Vietnam occasions for horn use Wildact 2015

-WildAct Vietnam 2015

Vietnam has the tragic distinction of being the country MOST responsible for the growing demand for rhino horn. The majority of consumers are mid to upper income males, conforming to the egotistical social pressures of  ‘the rarer the product, the more “valuable” or “cool” it is to have.’

Knowing the market, and being an influential businessman, Richard Branson has become an advocate and voice in the fight against horn use in the country. In September, he spent an evening in Ho Chi Minh City with the country’s elite.

“Listening to 25 of the country’s leading entrepreneurs around the table, I quickly learned how much the issue has already become part of a national conversation – one that has caused great embarrassment for a country of 90 million people that is rapidly entering the global market. But change is difficult to come by, stifled by a lack of interest in conservation issues and also by insufficient enforcement. On the upside, as I learned over dinner, younger Vietnamese seem to understand the seriousness of the problem and no longer wish to be associated with these harmful habits.” -Richard Branson

face campagin

A campaign geared toward the business men who utilize horn.

Yet according to a survey of Vietnamese youth (15-40), conducted by our Rhino Alliance partners, WildAct, there is little understanding of animal welfare. Despite the  conservation education campaigns that have been introduced, there are a great deal of Vietnamese youth still wanting to own wildlife products.

It is difficult to obtain true numbers indicating actual growth or decline in usage, but the number of poached rhinos this year is at an all time high, with at least 1500 poached in 2015.

Wildlife consumption and use is a social event in the country. It is a matter of changing tradition and trends.  To better understand the difficulty of this, imagine if turkeys  became endangered; could we convince people to stop consuming them every November?

In the meantime, how many rhino horns will be gifted this Christmas? How much longer can they sustain the slaughter and demand?

The silver lining is that in WildAct’s survery, nearly 98% of the youth agree the government should do more for wildlife conservation. Continued education and empowering the youth is the key to curbing the demand.

wildlife ambassadors for rhinos

Investec supports a program for youth ambassadors for wildlife in Vietnam.

 

 

 

Categories: Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Looking to the Future on World Rhino Day

World Rhino Day mom and babe

With 790 rhino poached this year, 2014 is on its way toward topping last year’s death toll. With the shadow of corruption within the national parks and government looming large over the fate of rhinos, it is difficult to feel optimistic about their future.

Yet, there are bright spots to illuminate the darkness.

World Youth Rhino Summit

Over 100 future conservationists (15-17 years of age), are convening at the first World Youth Rhino Summit  focused on the rhino poaching crisis. The demand for horn, and loss of rhinos affects countries across the world, not just in South Africa. The aim of the summit is to plant the seed of conservation in future rhino ambassadors throughout the globe.

world youth rhino summit 2

Over 140 delegates come together in the iMfolozi Game Reserve to address the poaching crisis and discuss resolutions.

Rhinos Without Borders

The initiative started with a successful translocation of 6 rhinos from South Africa to Botswana. Since then, Rhinos Without Borders is looking to move 100 rhinos to safer areas. With the future of the rhinos at stake, this move serves to increase the geographical spread of the rhino population throughout southern Africa, as well as introducing a new gene pool into Botswana. Translocation will be pivotal in the preservation of the species.

rhinos without borders

Previous translocation from Rhinos Without Borders and & Beyond.

 Thandi

Our beautiful, resilient, soon-to-be mom will remain the ambassador for her kind. She is and always will be an inspiration to keep us all going! We’re all waiting with bated breath for her to give birth sometime this December.

Thandi

WATCH: Latest video of Dr. Fowlds visit with Thandi

And as always, Fight for Rhinos and Helping Rhinos will continue putting our all into the best options we can find in assuring the future of these magnificent creatures. Currently, that includes  *Reserve Protection Agency       *Game Reserves United       *Ol Pejeta Conservancy                      *Project Rhino Track      *Stop the Demand Campaign

We CAN turn this around, but we need you! Please donate if you can.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Good News, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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