Help protect Rhinos from Poachers at the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary.
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The level of illegal rhino poaching for their horns is at an all time high. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), "Escalating levels of poaching and illegal trade in rhino horns are seriously undermining rhino conservation efforts, putting the survival of these species at risk." Those working to protect rhinos from poaching are up against criminals equipped with night vision scopes, silenced weapons, darting equipment and helicopters. The most effective tool to stop poaching is highly trained rangers who can monitor and protect existing rhino populations.
Rhino Fund Uganda provides training, employment, food, medical insurance and a uniform to over 80 rangers at the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary and Conservation Center in Uganda. This 24 hour a day surveillance requires that Rhino Fund Uganda continue to provide special training and hire more Rangers as Rhino numbers increase at the sanctuary, the only rhino sanctuary in Uganda.
The program is working, with rhino numbers up from 9 to 15 in just five years, and six more births on the way. With each successful birth, more Rangers need to be employed and trained. You can help. Just $9 pays for a ranger for a full day to stop poachers and ensure that there is always a safe place for rhinos in Uganda.
Report from the Field
"There are 96 rangers that work 12 hour shifts to monitor each rhino on the sanctuary. There rangers jobs are made a bit easier if they are kitted well with the needed equipment. To get to work the rangers ride bicycles for an average of 5km to and fro. They need to carry water, binoculars, walkie talkie radio, camera, rain coat, jacket, food, data collection sheets and a few other items. The walkie talkie radios were broken more often than not during the rain season as there was no way of keeping them completely dry. They were carrying their equipment and goods in plastic bags which also endangered them due to the noise and color of these plastic bags. These backpacks have not only given every ranger a practical, comfortable, easy way of carrying his goods but has boosted moral immensely. Thank you for helping the Rangers so they can more effectively protect our Rhinos!"
Report from the Field
Every time a baby rhino is born, the mother chases all the rhino away that are with her at that time and she stays alone with her baby. When this happens a new social group is formed by the one or more rhino that have been chased away. Every time a new social group is formed Rhino Fund needs to employ more rangers to monitor that social group. For each social group that is formed 6 new rangers need to be trained and employed. This costs rhino fund approximately USD 2000 per month. In 2016 alone they have had 3 new social groups formed with a forth due probably at the end of July making our additional costs to protect these rhino Usd 8000 per month. Costs of keeping the rhino safe by monitoring them are high, at this stage with shortage of income Rhino Fund Uganda have no choice but to make the decision whether all their rhino should be monitored or not.
To make matters worse, one of the 3 babies born this year, the one born in June has deformed hind feet. This means only senior rangers can be deployed to watch this baby to give him the best possible chance and learning how to cope with his disability. They need all the help we can get to watch this little boy. Rhino Fund Uganda would not like to remove him from his mother as that is the best place for him to be but they also need to be careful not to put him in danger of being injured or killed due to his disability.
Report from the Field
The grants received has enabled us to arrest 4 poachers who could potentially have poached one or more rhinos. These grants assisted in the a-to-z of night ambushes executed by our rangers which lead to the arrest and conviction of 4 poachers. These poachers were sentenced 18 months jail time. Having extra funds allowed us to work closely with our community which played a very big role in the above success as well as issue the rangers the correct equipment to enable them to do their duties at night as safely as possible.
The help we have received from Greater Good has no doubt enabled Rhino Fund to be much more active with regards to anti poaching. Anti poaching is not only the arresting of poachers but the community sensitization that leads to good information. This is a practice that will never end, Rhino Fund will continue with this for as long as there are rhino and wild animals to protect.
The mission of the Rhino Fund Uganda is to apply sound conservation principles whereby a safe environment is created in which rhinos can be conserved for future generations. In addition, through conservation education and community programs, win the hearts and minds of the surrounding communities, as well as Uganda as a whole, to ensure their support of this rhino conservation and reintroduction program.
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