Did you know that Namibia was the first country in the world to include environmental protection into it's constitution? This puts the country at the forefront by prioritizing our wild spaces for the preservation of our native flora and fauna. As such Namibia has become the home for a number of leading international wildlife conservation organisations and we think you should know about them!
These organisations work hard to secure a wild future for their species, often not just in Namibia but across the African continent.
Cheetah Conservation Fund
Cheetah in Namibia, and throughout other parts of Africa, are facing a precarious future due to ongoing human and wildlife conflict. Where cheetah thrive on farmland enjoying the ease of preying on domestic livestock, farmers face ongoing loss and as such conflict occurs. The Cheetah Conservation Fund use science to develop conservation strategies that help to mitigate the human and wildlife conflict. Learn more about and support the Cheetah Conservation Fund here.
Images © Cheetah Conservation Fund
Giraffe Conservation Foundation
There are still so many things that we don't know about giraffe, like did you know there are 4 distinct species? Or that there are only an estimated 111,000 giraffe left in the wild, that is 1 giraffe for every 4 elephant! The Giraffe Conservation Foundation is a science based conservation organisation that not only facilitates ground breaking research to better understand giraffe and their habitat, but has developed and implemented a variety of programmes across the continent from environmental education classes for children, to giraffe translocations to boost giraffe numbers and re-establish giraffe in areas they have previously gone extinct. Learn more about and support the Giraffe Conservation Foundation here.
Images © Giraffe Conservation Foundation
Save the Rhino Trust
As the name suggests, the Save the Rhino Trust Namibia is working tirelessly to stop the critically endangered black rhino from disappearing completely. With estimates of 100,000 black rhino in the 1960's and just 5,630 left today, it is obvious to all that something drastic needs to be done. So in addition to data collection and research, the Save The Rhino trust conduct 24hour patrols in known rhino habitats to ensure there safety and security. These habitats are remote, and some of the worlds harshest for wildlife to survive so the SVR rangers are some of the toughest in the world. Learn more about and support the Save The Rhino Trust here.
Images © Save The Rhino Trust
Pangolin Conservation and Research Foundation
Never heard of a pangolin? We aren't surprised. In over 20 years safariing around Namibia our pangolin sightings can be counted on just 1 finger. These scaly dinosaur looking anteaters are burrow dwelling nocturnal creatures that in addition to rarely being sighted are the MOST TRAFFICKED mammal in the world. Not surprisingly, very little is known about the pangolin and pangolin ecology in Namibia and as a result the Pangolin Conservation and Research Foundation are not only conducting ground breaking research but assisting the Namibian government to manage and monitor pangolin that are rescued from traffickers. Learn more about and support the Pangolin Conservation and Research Foundation here.
Images © Pangolin Conservation and Research Foundation
While these organisations (and more) work to understand the science of their species, to subsequently conserve the animals and their habitats, their strong focus on capacity building within the communities that they work means that there are limited resources to manage international and unskilled volunteers. For those that want to do more than just holiday when travelling to Africa, why not check out the following organisations so you can not only enjoy an incredible holiday but give back to some of Namibia's wildlife and wild spaces.
N/a'ankuse Wildlife Sanctuary
N/a'ankuse is a sanctuary for injured and problem animals, or animals that have been hand reared and are no longer ideal to keep as pets. Where possible their aim is to always release animals that have a good chance of a wild future, however at any one time the N/a'ankuse Wildlife Sanctuary is home to a number of animals that need taking care of. This creates a variety of volunteer opportunities ranging from 1 day to a few months. In addition to this, N/a'ankuse is not only committed to Namibian wildlife, but also to local communities and the San community in particular and volunteer programmes include those for medical doctors, veterinarians, and those with a passion for education. Check out the volunteer opportunities here. Interested in a short volunteer and safari option, get in touch.
Images © N/a'ankuse Wildlife Sanctuary
Elephant and Human Relations Aid
The Elephant and Human Relations Aid, or EHRA Namibia as they are affectionately known, offer volunteers the opportunity to get off the grid and enjoy life in rural Damaraland, helping local communities mitigate the risk of human & wildlife conflict and collecting data on the desert adapted elephant. Adventures with EHRA run in 2 week cycles and are truly a chance to experience the incredible wildlife and scenery in the Namib Desert. Join an EHRA adventure here.
Images © Elephant and Human Relations Aid Namibia
Located in Namibia's deep south, another off the grid location, is Oana. Their wildlife conservation approach combines habitat management, reintroductions and translocations of wildlife, monitoring programmes, as well as relevant research to inform conservation actions, and they do this through hands on adventures and with the help of international visitors. Oana's location is beyond anything you could ever imagine with some of Namibia's most breathtaking landscapes, and a wealth of wildlife that is still to be discovered. Join an Oana expedition here.
Images © Oana Namibia
All volunteer programmes can be combined with our tours to explore more of Namibia either before or after your volunteer experience, and so you can leave Namibia not only having enjoyed an incredible holiday but the feeling knowing you have contributed in a small way to nature conservation!