WOMEN IN THE WILDERNESS – A TRIBUTE TO DR IAN PLAYER
In the midst of launching Project Rhino KZN’s #LetOurVoicesBeHeard and our partnership with Operation Game Change in Vietnam, my ongoing work with ZAP-Wing, setting up the Ranger Support Programme for KZN’s anti-poaching teams on the frontline of the rhino poaching war and other Project Rhino KZN work, I’m taking part in ‘Women in the Wilderness’ – a 5-day iMfolozi Wilderness Trail in memory of Dr Ian Player, along with Micah van Schalkwyk (World Youth Rhino Summit) and Bronwyn Laing (Rhino Art Coordinator).
Ian was my mentor and stalwart ally as I took on the challenging role of Project Rhino KZN Coordinator in 2011 and his backing never wavered. His passing has left a large hole in my heart and my work and this journey will be a personal tribute for me, as well as the other women participants – all of whom had the privilege of meeting him at the World Youth Rhino Summit in September 2014 and have taken his powerful words to heart.
Ian’s support for women taking on leadership roles in conservation was the idea that sparked Women in the Wilderness, and we hope this wilderness trail – conducted by the Wilderness Leadership School – will the first of many. This Saturday, we’re taking 3 young ladies who were champion delegates at the World Youth Rhino Summit into the heart of the iMfolozi Wilderness where we will walk, sleep, eat and commune with the best of KZN’s wildlife – especially rhino – in Ian’s sacred space. We will honour his lifelong work and in his memory, and will also raise funds to support his last, final campaign: Save our Imfolozi Wilderness.
Our journey will be documented for media coverage and will be used widely in the launch of #LetOurVoicesBeHeard. It will also be available to support the Save our Imfolozi Wilderness campaign.
We’ve launched an crowdfunding campaign and I’m personally asking you to please show your support by donating (at the very least) US$1.00 – that’s just R10.00 . Click here for more info and to show your support: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/women-in-the-wilderness
Please join me on this symbolic and emotional journey. Feel free to share this email with your network.
Thank you in advance.
Sheelagh Antrobus | Project Rhino KZN Coordinator
AFRICAN CONSERVATION TRUST RHINO FUND