One of the central tenets of Safari Giants is to respect and value all life.
Because we share this ideology with various other organisations, Safari Giants supports selected teams of incredible people who do remarkable things for animals, for humans and for the environment.
Through funds generated from our safari expeditions, Safari Giants pledge our support for organisations that work in different conservation capacities. These organisations work tirelessly to foster human relations, conserve nature, reduce human-animal conflict, eliminate canned hunting, eradicate poaching, and end the illegal trade of animals and animal parts.
Our signature donor participator events allow us to not only contribute funding towards research; they also allow us to be actively involved in the process of collaring animals, collecting and recording data, and monitoring animal activity.
With the support of the founders of Safari Giants, it’s been possible to fund the collaring of 28 elephant collars for Elephants Alive. The funding covers vets, helicopter and pilot fees, the cost of the GPS collars, and the costs incurred in capturing and monitoring the data from these GPS collars for a period of 4 years.
In addition, in 2015 Dex – as the founder of Youth 4 African Wildlife – worked some magic and raised sufficient funds which allowed Y4AW to make a significant donation to aid the translocation of eight rhinos to Botswana.
Hope lies with the youth, and the tide is turning
Via prolific awareness campaigns, the World’s youth are notably taking a stance on animal rights and the natural environment. The seed of environmental sustainability has found fertile soil in the world’s 18-30yrs demographic, and a culture of awareness and activism is steadily spreading.
To dream the not-so-impossible dream
Established in 2013 by Dex Kotze, Y4AW raises global awareness about issues that endanger African wildlife, such as poaching and the illegal trade of live animals and animal parts – specifically ivory, rhino horn, and lion bone.
Run as an internship over several weeks, participants from all corners of the globe come together. Within the beauty of the African landscape, they learn skills and gain knowledge that enables them to deliver a message of awareness regarding the precarious status of African wildlife.
Visual messages elicit a visceral response. Accordingly, Y4AW uses powerful visual mediums like social media, photography, and film to communicate the research and insights they gain during their internship. The short documentaries that YFAW interns have created to date help highlight the issues that conservation organisations in Africa face. Through their films, they’ve been able to reach people’s ears, eyes, and hearts regarding the plight of rhinos, as well as the other risks that Africa’s wildlife faces.
One for all, all for one
Dr. Fortunate Mafeta Phaka was the first intern to walk the entire path with Y4AW. His journey with Y4AW began during his second year of studying Conservation Science. Since meeting Dr Phaka, we’ve seen him gain his Honours degree and finally his PhD in Natural Sciences. Fortunate is an environmental scientist, author, and TV producer. He’s also the Project Director at Youth 4 African Wildlife NPC.
Fortunate’s work is focused on increasing social inclusion in conservation while improving wildlife protection outcomes. Dr Phaka has received multiple accolades for this work, including the Voice of Heritage and Environmental Community Awards. Through Youth 4 African Wildlife NPC, Fortunate has supervised and edited multiple short documentaries that promote the work done by The Rhino Orphanage.
Never again – again, never again
When the colonial era came and went, Africa’s wildlife thought they’d seen the last of their destroyers. Sadly, it was not to be.
Due to Asia’s insatiable, senseless and irrational demand for rhino horn, almost 10 000 African rhinos have been brutally slaughtered between 2008 and 2021. Sadly, this number increases daily, as at least one rhino is killed every day in Southern Africa. Historically, rhino horn was used in Traditional Chinese Medicine; however, the reasons for using it nowadays have changed. Consumers of rhino horn now do so out of a desire for status and the need to appear impressive. Suppliers of rhino horn are nothing other than greedy syndicates – organised criminals who lack conscience and accountability.
Place of safety, House of love,
In 2012, Arrie van Deventer founded World’s first rhino orphanage. His encounter with a baby rhino whose mother had been cruelly poached led him to establish a baby rhino sanctuary – a place where orphaned rhinos could receive the same protection, care, and love that they would ordinarily receive from their mothers, were they alive.
The Rhino Orphanage, a registered NPO, is the first-ever specialised, non-commercial sanctuary dedicated to the rescue, raising, rehabilitation, and release of orphaned rhinos back into the wild. The organisation is made up of a passionate team of individuals who all believe in the sanctity of Africa’s wildlife and the natural environment.
Dex’s relationship with The Rhino Orphanage began in 2012 when Y4AW interns made a documentary about the poaching crisis in Africa. Dex has been a member of the Board of Directors of The Rhino Orphanage since 2013, and has harnessed his business networks to raise vital funds for elephant and rhino conservation.
Safari Giants continue to pledge their financial support for The Rhino Orphanage, and also pledge their commitment to continue raising awareness about the plight of African rhinos, and the need for global action to be taken on a policy level.
To respect and value all life means to do no harm. In this way, Safari Giants acts in alignment with the ethics informed by Blood Lions.
Standing up, speaking out
Safari Giants and Blood Lions share a common goal: to eliminate “canned” hunting and the commercial breeding of lions “for the bullet”. In addition, Safari Giants pledge to never support unethical tourist activities. By informing our clients about which wildlife sanctuaries and animal orphanages are legitimate, we’re able to guide them regarding where they should place their trust – and in many cases, their donor support.
Established in 2015, alongside the release of the film by the same name, the Blood Lions Campaign exposes the ongoing cycle of abuse and exploitation of lions.
This abuse is made possible due to the destructive practices of canned hunting, lion cub petting, walking with lions, volunteerism scams, and the barbaric demand for lion bone. Co-produced by Ian Michler and Nick Chevallier, Blood Lions was the culmination of 3 years of work, and its message endures.
Defending their freedom
Blood Lions is a term that refers to lions that have been bred commercially, in captivity, for exploitation.
After enduring appalling conditions in an unnatural environment, and being treated as domestic breeding machines, these genetically compromised lions are released into the wild, with the sole purpose of being killed for sport.
Coinciding with the killing of Cecil the lion, Blood Lions highlights that canned hunting satisfies the instant gratification market. Hiding behind the guise of “conservation”, canned hunting is quintessentially shooting fish in a barrel – hunting made easy for lazy, unethical, gratuitous hunters.
Although immoral, canned hunting is technically legal in South Africa, but only due to semantics and classifications. It falls between the gap that distinguishes lion hunting, which is legislated by the Environmental Affairs Department, from farming, which is legislated by the Department of Agriculture. Because of this, canned hunting manages to escape the ethics that guide both domains, attracting greedy breeders and hunters who lack integrity.
See – Feel – Do
By confronting the commodification of lions and predators, Ian Michler and the Blood Lions team have brought conservation, hunting and environmental ethics to the fore. Safari Giants are privileged to have access to their knowledge, passion and guidance. We’re proud to stand alongside Blood Lions and support their cause.
Do your bit. Visit www.bloodlions.org to get involved, watch the film and to keep abreast with the latest news.
It’s ironic that Earth’s biggest land animal needs our protection.
The African elephant has suffered at the hands of man for decades as paradoxically, though elephant ivory is deemed valuable by humans, the life of an elephant is not.
But not all humans feel that way. The Elephants Alive Organisation was established in 2003 with one simple but sizable goal: to ensure the survival of elephants and their habitats and to promote harmonious co-existence between man and elephants. Their method for achieving their mission is aligned with their strapline “Science and Survival”. The research, education, advocacy and networking that Elephants Alive conduct, highlight the plight of elephants, their loss of habitat, and their often brutal slaughter.
Where there’s compassion, knowledge and will – action is born
Through our donor participation signature events, Safari Giants are able to contribute funding that’s required for researching elephants within their natural environment. One way of conducting research is by collaring elephants. This allows researchers to monitor the elephant’s movements and keep track of the social dynamics of herds. Simultaneously, elephant collaring offers Safari Giants’ clients a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be actively involved in collaring an elephant and assisting with collecting and recording the data and samples that will be used for scientific research.
Dr. Michelle Henley – co-founder, Director and Principal Researcher – has studied elephants for over 20 years. Working alongside a team of dedicated researchers and project managers, the scope of her work includes all aspects of elephants – elephant behaviour , human-elephant interaction, and the habitat in which elephants exist.
Acting with integrity, respecting their dignity
Collaring is a complicated procedure and is not without risk. Safari Giants is entirely guided by the wildlife veterinarians and scientists who are responsible for the operation. Carefully considered and meticulously executed, the collaring procedure requires all participants to work in concert and with the utmost caution.
To get involved or find out more, visit www.elephantsalive.org.
“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change, that lives within the means available and works co-operatively against common threats.” – Charles Darwin
By highlighting conscious change, the desire to co-exist, and the will to work together against threats, this quote by Charles Darwin holds the clue for humanity to achieve harmony. Harmony between humans, and harmony between humans and the animals that share our planet.
Fostering forgiveness, halting hatred
Safari Giants stands alongside The AEGIS Trust and the Champion Humanity Organisation. We recognise that only through interpersonal cooperation and collaboration can we work towards making a better world for all humanity, and by default, all of the natural World.
Though no small task, the mission of the AEGIS Trust is to predict, prevent and eliminate genocide globally. AEGIS has established centres of remembrance and learning in regions that have suffered genocide. Via research, education, and sharing information and advice, they provide safe environments where reconciliation and peace-building can flourish.
By researching events like the Holocaust, the atrocities of Bosnia, and the ethnic cleansing in Kosovo and Rwanda, brothers James and Stephen Smith and the AEGIS Trust team have established a foothold for forgiveness, a model through which nations can anticipate and halt genocide before it happens.
Where healing happens, hope is harnessed
Rwanda can be considered the epicentre of humanity. Having endured the indignity, cruelty and brutality of genocide, they have emerged to become a Beacon of Hope. Kigali, City of Survivors, is a success story – a testament to the philosophy that as much as man can choose to cultivate conflict, we can also choose to cultivate harmony.
The will of one
The Safari Giants Champion Humanity Tour honours various incredible projects and outstanding individuals that prove that the power of one is enough to effect change.
Legendary projects like Dian Fossey’s Karisoke Research Centre, Anne Heyman’s Agahoza-Shalom Youth Village, the Kigali Genocide Memorial and Rwanda’s Health Builders Organisation have one thing in common; they teach us that meaningful change starts with a small seed of will, grows with conviction and commitment, and succeeds with persistence and dedication.
To find out more about the work that Aegis do, visit https://www.aegistrust.org.
Safari Giants wholeheartedly supports Tsavo Trust’s mission to secure a future for wildlife and people in the Tsavo Conservation Area (TCA) of Kenya. Tsavo Trust, based within the TCA, is a dedicated non-profit with a team of conservation experts deeply rooted in the region. They focus on safeguarding wildlife and its habitat while encouraging community involvement in conservation. Through partnerships with various stakeholders, including government bodies, NGOs, communities, and private entities, Tsavo Trust strives for a sustainable future for the TCA.
Tsavo Trust, in partnership with the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and collaborators like Save The Elephants, monitors Tsavo’s elephant populations, focusing on the rare ‘Big Tuskers.’ These elephants, with tusks so massive they touch the ground, are dwindling, with only about 25 remaining globally, mostly in Tsavo. Poaching and natural rarity make them vulnerable. Tsavo Trust’s mission is to safeguard these majestic creatures from poaching threats while allowing them to roam freely in Tsavo, crucial for tourism and local communities.”
To find out more about the work that Tsavo Trust do, visit www.tsavotrust.org.