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It's World Elephant Day on 12th August

George Buchanan's TV programme on BBC2, Elephant Family and Me, in which he follows an elephant family in the Kenyan wilderness, gives us  the chance to raise awareness of the charities working to help elephants and ways you can make a difference to the elephant.

Some of the organisations/charities helping elephants include:

Space for Giants is an international conservation charity, with more than a decade of experience facilitating the conservation and management of African elephants, and the landscapes they depend on.  Find out more here

Tsavo Trust in Kenya have a wildlife conservation programme, including the Big Tusker Project,, a Community Conservancy Programme, and an Animal Welfare Programme.  The Tsavo Trust partners with the Tusk Trust in the UK and Tusk USA, and you can make donations here.

The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust has veterinary units, an Orphan Project,  eight full time anti-poaching units and a community outreach programme.  It also gives direct support to the Kenyan Wildlife Service.  You can donate here.  And you can foster an elephant here for a minimum of $50.  

In India, the World Land Trust has their Elephant Corridor Appeal.  This UK based charity is working with Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) in an urgent bid to save Indian Elephants from extinction by raising £750,000 to extend and protect Mudahalli Corridor in Southern India. The corridor needs to be secured and widened.  You can make a donation here.

The Mali Elephant Project aims to protect a unique population of 550 sub-desert elephants. It is a joint initiative of The WILD Foundation and the International Conservation Fund of Canada.  Funding is being used to train and mobilize a rapid response armed anti-poaching force who can act on information provided by the project’s community information networks.  Visit the project here

The International Elephant Foundation has programmes in Asia and Africa, including conservation methods using dogs and horses, and working to help farmers and elephants co-exist.   This is a US organisation.  Visit the IEF here

Save the Elephants have a number of projects, including Turning Poachers into Gamekeepers.  It undertakes vital research on elephant behaviour and ecology and pioneered GPS radio tracking in Africa to provide fresh insight into the life of elephants, and it develops and deploys cutting edge tracking systems to monitor and protect elephants. Find out more here

500 Elephants involves the relocation of up to 500 elephants (and a good number of other species) is the largest ever translocation of elephants to a single nature reserve.  This initiative is aiming to reduce conflict and protect habitat in Majete and Liwonde, and create Malawi’s premiere elephant sanctuary in Nkhotakota.  Find out more here

SPANA are working to help logging elephants in Burma.   They are looking to raise enough funds to run a mobile veterinary clinic to help injured elephants.   Click here to visit SPANA's website. 


Please say NO to elephant trekking:    

  • Elephants have to be tamed before they can take part in treks - which inevitably involves beatings and being kept in small cages while they are young until they are broken
  • Young elephants are taken from the wild to support the tourist trade, often resulting in the killing of their mother
  • Elephants are strong but not designed to carry heavy weights on their backs - carrying people all day will cause suffering
  • Many elephants will have to endure hard, relentless, long days.  When they are not working, they will be chained.

Responsible Travel lists 16 elephant conservation holidays - click here to see them

Instead of putting elephant trekking on your bucket list, why not have an elephant conservation holiday instead?