Tuesday, 8 October 2013


If all else is not true, one thing is and (important nature catastrophies excepted) will stay for certain: The world is divided into two equal half rounds: Life above and beneath the equator!
We here in South Africa are enjoying the glorious season of spring, all the little green men sticking their heads out of the ground once again, and the other half is entering nature's rest period: winter, a time to re-charge the life force and to rest.
The little green men in my province, the Freestate, the agricultural leader in SA, have some problems though: The land suffers from a disabling drought. The colour of the landscape is beige. Water is scarce, the farming community desperately prays for rain. Others again put on their leopard skins and dance for the rain queen.
Observing the plight of the earth and it's living beings is a favourite subject on my laptop, and trying to drum up support is too.

You know about the Masaai? They are those thin, tall people in mostly red cloths, jumping down and up high in the air holding their herder's sticks, while they thus get a better view of potential danger to their cattle.......

Remember a couple of months ago I provided a link to a petition against one of the many man made disasters of Africa: The Masaai
people were going to be driven off their land to make room for hotels and hunting ground and other amenities for the rich people. I signed and pledged a very small amount of money, just as much as was affordable, and today I received the heart warming e-mail that "avaaz" changed everybody's mind and I felt deeply involved, proud and happy:

Another example: Remember how almost 2 million of us rallied to stop the Maasai tribe in Tanzania from being kicked off their land for a hunting reserve? Last week, the Prime Minister announced they could stay! The petition provided a powerful basis for what the team did next:

Maasai women gather to protest the eviction. Photo by Jason Patinkin
  1. Got CNN and the Guardian to visit the Maasai and break the wider story to the world.
  2. Advised Maasai elders on their campaigning strategy.
  3. Flooded Ministers and the President with messages -- forcing a debate in cabinet and Parliament.
  4. Ran a hard hitting newspaper ad in an influential paper which publicly shamed the government.
  5. Persuaded diplomats worldwide to raise the issue -- embarrassing the government.
  6. Financially supported Maasai elders to travel to the capital where they gathered to 'occupy' land outside of the Prime Minister’s office for weeks, refusing to leave until he met them.


The victory belongs to the Maasai people, but our community helped them win by making this a global issue the government could no longer ignore. This hopefully ends a 20 year land battle!!

link to "avaaz" newsletter:  www.avaaz.org
It is not necessary to give money. You can just add your voice to a petition .

Now, I am aware that there is too much wrong in the world for one person making a difference, but one can choose one or two causes and help make a difference. It makes a GREAT difference to your feelings, if your cause is getting somewhere and you at least have lent a helping hand.

 If you want to chip in to help keep it all going, click here: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/october_reportback_a/?bPuUgeb&v=29778

I will write again soon. Greetings,

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Poaching wildlife

To write about Africa and leave out the endangered wildlife would not be complete reporting.
Everybody in the world should know about it by now. But the devastiating extents of the damage cannot be highlighted enough.
When a person sits alone at his desk and thinks he can do nothing about the vanishing wildlife in Africa, here is hope. There are many on going activities and organisations that fight with everything there is to stop poaching. You could join one or more of them as a member, make small donations or wear the t-shirt, just to develop awareness.
The famous BIG FIVE in Africa, could very well soon be the big four (Rhinos dying out first) then the big three, big two and so on. That -among many other deeds of greed- is what man does to destroy earth.

Ahttp://www.awf.org/frica is home to the world's
most iconic wildlife.

But illegal poaching might destroy it forever.

Where do we stand?






Why are these animals killed?

Endangered animals are slaughtered so that a single body part – like tusks, pelt, or bones – can be illegally sold for huge sums of money.

RHINO HORN is believed to treat: hangovers, ipotence, fever, cancer

proven to cure: none of the above

the demand for rhino horn is exceedingly high; it sells for nearly $30,000 a pound. Gold, by comparison, is worth about $22,000 a pound.

ivory is carved into: jewlery, utensils, religious figurines, trinkets. worth the life of an elephant? no. as much as 70% of illegal ivory goes to China, where it is sold on the streets for up to $1,000 a pound.

Zebras are hunted for their skins. They are also occasionally used for meat or medicine.

Wildlife officials have observed a recent surge in trafficking of infant gorillas. They are sold for up to $40,000.

Due to recent habitat loss, many lions live close to humans and are killed by farmers in retaliation for preying on livestock.

How did this happen?

The vast majority of poaching is caused by organized crime syndicates that use high-powered technology and weaponry to track and kill many animals at once without being detected.

ak-47s, grenade launchers, night-vision goggles, gps & low-flying helicopters

What does this mean for Africa?

vulnerable, endangered, critically endangered

at current paching rates, elephants, rhinos, and other iconic African wildlife may be gone within 10 years.

what we're doing:

Protect Wildlife: We recruit, train, and equip our scouts with advanced tools like satellite phones, GPS, and all-terrain vehicles to help them safeguard animals.

Conserve Land: In tandem with anti-poaching efforts, we establish wildlife corridors – large sections of land that allow animals to move from one national park to another.

Educate the Public: We work with conservation groups and governments to raise awareness of poaching, illegal trading, and dwindling wildlife populations.

Provide Livelihood Alternatives: We work to provide alternative means of livelihood to local communities so wildlife is not harmed in order to sustain the local economy.

That’s not all. To learn about our many ongoing efforts to protect Africa, visit: www.awf.org

That's not all. To learn about our many on going efforts to protect Africa, visit: http://www.awf.org/