New Survey Conducted by Tusk and Natural State Finds Poaching Increasing Across Africa and Wildlife Rangers are Bracing for Impact Amidst the Ongoing Impacts of COVID-19

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Ranger Teams Across Africa Call for Public Support as They Join Forces This Weekend to Bolster the Anti-Poaching Efforts of Thousands of Their Colleagues

Join The Race

This Saturday, September 18th, more than 150 ranger teams across Africa will be participating in the 2021 Wildlife Ranger Challenge, a multi-million-dollar fundraising initiative, supporting thousands of the men and women on the frontline of Africa’s protected areas.

A new survey, conducted by Tusk and Natural State, along with 60 field conservation organizations across 19 African countries, found that as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to impact Africa’s communities and wildlife, the wildlife rangers see no relief in sight.

The pressures on Africa’s protected areas threaten to compromise decades of development and conservation success through a continental-wide collapse of wildlife tourism. The Covid-19 crisis has eliminated essential funding for wildlife protection that comes from tourism, and the economic stresses of Covid-19 has reduced ranger presence, resulting in a rise in poaching. The threat is expected to increase further with ranger capacity remaining low and as international borders open.

This Saturday, September 18th, more than 150 ranger teams across Africa will be participating in the 2021 Wildlife Ranger Challenge, a multi-million-dollar fundraising initiative, supporting thousands of the men and women on the frontline of Africa’s protected areas.

During the Wildlife Ranger Challenge, the ranger teams will participate in a series of mental and physical challenges, culminating in the Wildlife Ranger Challenge 21km half marathon. Funds raised will support rangers to safeguard the continent’s iconic wildlife for years to come.

Earlier this week, Alexander Dreymon, star of Netflix’s The Last Kingdom, encouraged the public to ‘Run with Rangers’ by signing up to virtually run or walk alongside the thousands of rangers on September 18th. Last month, British adventurer Bear Grylls kicked off the challenge with a video describing the need for urgent action, and throughout the campaign, celebrities, including Tusk’s Royal Patron, HRH The Duke of Cambridge Prince William, Olympic marathon gold medalist Eliud Kipchoge, Behati Prinsloo Levine and acclaimed National Geographic Wildlife Photographers, including Paul Niklen and Ami Vitale, have encouraged the public to register to run the virtual race and donate to the Ranger Fund.

To find out more, donate to the cause and sign up to run or walk virtually in solidarity with Africa’s rangers this weekend at wildliferangerchallenge.org.

ABOUT WILDLIFE RANGER CHALLENGE
The Wildlife Ranger Challenge is a multi-million-pound fundraising initiative supporting wildlife rangers across Africa’s protected areas. These brave men and women are working tirelessly to safeguard the continent’s iconic wildlife while enduring drastic cuts in salaries and resources due to the devastating economic impact of Covid-19.

ABOUT TUSK
Tusk’s mission is to amplify the impact of progressive conservation initiatives across Africa. The charity has earned a reputation for providing a highly efficient solution for funding wildlife conservation programmes. Tusk partners with the most effective local organisations, investing in their in-depth knowledge and expertise. By supporting and nurturing their conservation programmes, it helps accelerate growth from an innovative idea to a scalable solution. More information available at Tusk.org.

ABOUT NATURAL STATE
The mission of NATURAL STATE is landscape restoration at scale. Through large-scale restoration projects, NATURAL STATE’s objective is to sequester and store carbon, secure biodiversity and make measurable advances towards the sustainable development goals. In addition to implementing large scale restoration projects, NATURAL STATE develops innovative technology and financial mechanisms to unlock private sector capital, thereby accelerating restoration efforts globally. More information available at NaturalState.org.

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Heather Marohn
Bullseye Communications
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