International Youth Activist Juliette West Organizes Youth to Save Elephants

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As conditions in the Eastern regions of Africa continue to worsen for the elephants, Juliette West, internationally recognized elephant and youth advocate, organizes youth to lead a movement to save the lives of the more than 100 elephants killed each day in Africa for their ivory tusks.

As conditions in the Eastern regions of Africa continue to worsen for the elephants, Juliette West, internationally recognized elephant and youth advocate, has added her voice to the movement to save the lives of the more than 100 elephants killed each day in Africa for their ivory tusks. JulietteSpeaks, a US based non-profit, has launched their first two “Global Youth Against the Ivory Trade” School Club programs in Tanzania and China, in an effort to support youth who want to help spread awareness about this urgent issue.

More than 140,000 elephants, one-third of the African elephant population, resides in East Africa today. An estimated 73 per cent of the elephants are located in Tanzania, and adding populations in Kenya, South Sudan, and Uganda would cover 99 per cent. These four countries are the source of most of the illicit ivory harvested in the continent.

Tanzania's largest wildlife park, Selous Game Reserve, holds the largest population of elephants in East Africa with more than 50,000 tuskers. The SEGA Girls’ School Anti-Ivory Club in Tanzania was established earlier this year with the help of Juliette West through her international youth organization, JulietteSpeaks. Besides animal welfare issues, the organization focuses on training youth in leadership skills.

The Tanzania club has already made a stand in a recent message to Thailand’s Madam Prime Minister Shinawatra shortly after her visit with Tanzania’s President Jakaya Kikwete.

“We are raising our voices to tell world leaders that we, the young people of Tanzania, want to put an end to the sale of illegal ivory that is resulting in the slaughter of elephants in our country. Elephants are an important part of Tanzania’s national heritage and contribute greatly to our national economy through tourism. At the current rate of killing for ivory, some estimate that wild African elephants in Tanzania may be completely wiped out in the next decade or two. This would be an international tragedy and as well as a terrible blot of shame on the current generation’s record of environmental stewardship,” was their message signed by all of its members.

JulietteSpeaks is helping organize local trips to Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) in and around Tanzania. “Our hope is that the program will raise awareness of anti poaching efforts especially how local people can be involved in the activities that will put a stop to poaching," said Enock Gray, the SEGA School Anti Ivory Club’s- Coordinator. The girls club will gather information and interviews and report on villagers' activities in the Wildlife Management Areas in Tanzania. They will report on their findings to officials in Dar-Es-Salaam’s Ministry and other internationally recognized organizations through the JulietteSpeaks elephant network.

JulietteSpeaks has won the respect of and alliance with many internationally recognized organizations that are working to stop the ivory trade. We share our educational resources from organizations with our Global Youth Against the Ivory Trade school club partners from the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, IFAW, Joyce Poole’s Elephant Voices, Dr. Jane Goodall, and Will Travers’ BornFree.

About JulietteSpeaks
JulietteSpeaks was founded as a nonprofit by Juliette West to expand the capacity of her personal animal advocacy work which has reached almost one million listeners worldwide. The mission of JulietteSpeaks is to provide a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves, especially animals. The current focus of the organization is elephant welfare advocating for public awareness about the issues confronting both captive and wild elephants and their protection.

For more information, visit: http://www.juliettespeaks.org and http://www.howibecameanelephant.com.

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