~~September 14, 2015~~
CHAMPIONS OF THE EARTH
Majority Female Ranger Unit from South Africa Wins Top UN Environmental Prize
The Black Mamba Anti-Poaching Unit, a South African and majority-women ranger group, has been announced as one of the winners of the United Nation’s top environmental accolade, the Champions of the Earth award.
With this award, in the Inspiration and Action category, UNEP is recognizing the rapid and impressive impact The Black Mamba Unit has made in combating poaching and the courage required to accomplish it.
UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner said, “Community-led initiatives are crucial to combatting the illegal wildlife trade and the Black Mambas highlight the importance and effectiveness of local knowledge and commitment.”
“Their many successes are a result of their impressive courage and determination to make a difference in their community. The Black Mambas are an inspiration not only locally, but across the world to all those working to eliminate the scourge of the illegal wildlife trade.”
Since being founded in 2013, the 26-member unit has also helped arrest six poachers, reduced snaring by 76 per cent, removed over 1,000 snares and put 5 poachers’ camps and 2 bush meat kitchens out of action.
The area that they protect, the Balule Private Game Reserve, is home to an abundance of wildlife – including not only rhino but leopards, lions, elephants, cheetahs and hippos. It is part of the Greater Kruger National Park, a network of over 2 million hectares of protected areas that is home to thousands of birds, impalas, giraffes, wildebeest, buffalos, antelopes, hyenas, crocodiles, fish and zebras.
Protecting the rhino is vital in South Africa, where 1,215 rhinos were killed in 2014 alone. This is an increase of over 12,000 percent since 2004 and symptomatic of a devastating epidemic that has pushed the rhino closer to the edge of extinction.
Leitah Mkhabela, a member of the Black Mamba rangers, said:
“I am not afraid, I know what I am doing and I know why I am doing it. If you see the poachers you tell them not to try, tell them we are here and it is they who are in danger.”
“Animals deserve to live they have a right to live.
Do your part.
When demand ends, the killing will end.
Say yes to life.
Say no to illegal rhino horn and elephant ivory.”
Their difficult, intense and dangerous work both within and outside the park fundamentally undermines the international poaching syndicates that threaten to wipe out populations of rhino and elephant in the wild.
The award, to be presented in New York on the 27 September 2015, is in acknowledgment of this fierce, practical courage.
“As it appears in … full read/full credit”
~UN Says Anti-Poaching Group Are Champions Of The Earth~
~Published on Sep 10, 2015~
The Black Mamba anti-poaching group in Africa just received the UN’s Champions of the Earth Award for Inspiration and Action. The group, composed mostly of women, patrols the Balule Private Game Reserve in South Africa, dissembling snares, looking for poachers and avoiding wildlife.
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#WeAlllAreOne #ItIsWhatItIs #DrRex #HortyRex #hrexachwordpress
~Champions of the Earth 2014~
~Published on Feb 18, 2015~
Passion. Action. Hope.
Last year’s 2014 Laureates offered these virtues in spades … and offered an optimistic outlook on the future of the environment.
Now is the time to nominate those who inspire you see a better future as well.
We ALL are ONE!!