Did you know that there are two types of elephant--Asian and African--and while they are indeed similar, they are too biologically different to breed? Or that the street value of a single elephant tusk is $15,000? Or that there are only about 40,000 Asian elephants left on this planet? August 12th is World Elephant Day, an international holiday dedicated to honoring these intelligent animals, learning more about their needs, and pledging to protect their welfare in the future.
Elephants are a noble species of animal and they need our protection. Poachers looking to make money off of these elephants’ ivory are driven by greed and cruelty, and they have gone too far: elephants are endangered animals. If there continues to be a market for ivory, they will likely go extinct.
The main market for ivory is China, where demand is so high that a single tusk can sell for the exorbitant price of $200,000. This has led the population of Asian elephants to shrink by 70% in recent years. Enough is enough: the elephants must be saved. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) declared the ivory trade illegal in 1989, but atrocities against elephants still continue today.
UniversalGiving has partnered with organizations dedicated to helping elephants. Together, we can recreate a world where elephants are happy and plentiful--where they can roam freely without fear of poachers. It all starts with you. Check out the opportunities below to see how you can help elephants thrive once again.
Let Kids Be Kids Inc. This November 2015, voters in the state of Washington will have an opportunity to vote “yes” to save endangered elephants from extinction. Initiative 1401 will strengthen laws that ban sales of endangered species’ products in Washington state, decreasing Washington’s contribution to animal poaching. The animals protected by Initiative 1401 include cheetahs, marine turtles, sharks, lions, leopards, tigers, and, of course, elephants. Your contribution of just $25 will contribute towards advocacy and legislative support for these amazing animals: donate today.
Greenheart Travel. Visit the vast, diverse wilderness of the Wasgawuma Region in Sri Lanka to help both the villagers and the elephants of the area. There, you will work alongside scientists and conservationists, participate in ecological research on elephants, teach locals environmental awareness and sustainability, and help to minimize conflict between man and elephant. This is bound to be an amazing experience in an amazing place with some amazing animals.
The GVN Foundation. Have you ever wanted to visit the stunning country of Thailand to be one with wildlife and nature? For the adventurous animal-lovers out there, this opportunity is sure to be a great fit. Travel to Thailand to be part of community-based, Thai-led projects in education, healthcare, childcare, and elephant care. Work hands-on with elephants and people alike, and make an impactful difference in their lives.
Globe Aware. Are you a nature-loving, volunteer-minded person who wants to go on an adventure with some elephants? Then look no further. Globe Aware has the perfect opportunity for you: travel to Thailand to work with locals of the Surin Province to preserve the native elephant habitat. Work on projects such as planting food crops and constructing shade shelters. Along the way, you will be able to experience firsthand the exquisite beauty of Thailand.