Rhino poaching has been prolific in Southern Africa for more than a decade and during this time, the MyPlanet Rhino Fund has become one of South Africa’s biggest citizen-driven fundraising initiatives for the conservation of these endangered animals, according to MySchool.
Pieter Twine, general manager of MySchool the community fundraising programme that established the MyPlanet Rhino Fund, says that the initiative was an excellent example of a collective effort by citizens to effect change.
Twine adds that the fact that the fund had been able to quickly raise and give back such a large sum towards conservation indicated that citizens were concerned and wanted to contribute to the fight to save the rhino.
“The goal of the fund is to create a singular vehicle, where the public can raise funds through simply swiping their MySchool cards at our partners and be secure in the knowledge that these funds will always be allocated to best-practice initiatives,” Twine says.
Twine says that in the past year, the fund had carefully assessed the need for assisting in rhino conservation and allocated specific sums to focus on various aspects of the fight against:
- protection, and
- rehabilitation of rhinos.
“We have committed a sum of R1.1-million to game ranger training, as these professionals are our first line of defence, risking their lives in the battle against dangerous poachers,” says Twine.
“For the fight to bring criminals to book, we have granted a total of R900 000 for the installation and support of high-tech license number plate recognition cameras in the field,” adds Twine.
“These will enable the authorities to track, trace and prosecute perpetrators. An additional sum of R1.3-million has also been granted to set up and operate several new K9 units in the field,” Twine concludes.
Twine concludes that R900 000 was invested in the rhino dehorning programme that is being run in key rhino populations across the country, while more than R80 000 was used to fund conservation awareness programmes at Wilderness school.
MySchool has encouraged the public to become part of its efforts to protect Rhinos in South Africa as, together, we can all protect our African heritage.
For more information, visit www.myschool.co.za. Individuals can also follow MySchool on Facebook, Twitter or on Instagram.
MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet (MySchool) Poaching Conservation MyPlanet Rhino Fund Rhino Rhino conservation Rhino paoching High-tech security systems Dehorning Rhino dehorning