- By: Safari News
- Short URL: https://www.backabuddy.co.za/back-a-ranger
In 2017, 63 rangers in Africa lost their lives in the line of duty.
As the Safari News team we learnt of the plight of rangers through a personal relationship with Otch Otto, an environmental law enforcement and security expert working with a number of the Parks in Africa. He highlighted to us the stresses and challenges rangers face on a daily basis, having to work long hours in difficult conditions. Not only is protecting our biodiversity hard work, but they constantly face danger. These criminals will stop at nothing to achieve their goals.
Apart from threatening the rangers’ lives, their family members are often also targeted, which place these wildlife warriors under even more pressure. Many reserves are understaffed, so rangers have to work long hours, and even when not at work, the onslaught on our wildlife is constantly on their minds, along with upcoming court cases.
Without rangers looking after our biodiversity, we will have nothing to show our children. Rangers are selfless – putting our biodiversity, their families and even communities before themselves. If we are able to assist them, even in the smallest of ways, they might rest assured knowing that we are looking out for them.
We are conservationists and can’t sit back while our rangers fight an uphill battle on their own. We all want to be able to visit nature and show our children, grandchildren, friends and family our natural heritage, which include not only bugs, plants, rivers and oceans, but also the wildlife associated to it. But, if we equip our rangers much better to fight the battle on our behalf, we can all share in this heritage with pride. This is an opportunity to get everyone to rally behind Africa’s rangers, even if it is through a small donation.
There is no time like the present to work towards changing the situation. It is never too late to play your part. Most of us can’t do their work, but we can assist in other ways. We can prevent our rangers from facing burnout. Without supporting them, their families and the communities surrounding our protected areas, the stresses of daily life will eventually become too much and rangers will no longer be able to look after our precious wildlife and natural resources.
All funds raised through this initiative will be utilsed towards the following needs:
Family support in the event of illness / death
Wounded rangers are cared for, but families often can’t afford to travel to visit them in hospital, pay for guest houses or flights. If rangers need to spend long periods recovering, policies often do not cover this.
Emotional support to deal with trauma situations
Rangers killed in action are honoured and their families might be cared for, but personal problems are not included. There might be a shortage of funds until insurance pays out, which could be the difference between enjoying a meal and going hungry, or paying for extras at a funeral.
‘Spoils’ / relaxation / timeout / etc.
Rangers visit other parks as a service benefit during holidays, but a meal at a restaurant, a Christmas shopping trip or taking the kids to a theme park are rarer experiences. At work, rangers are not really rewarded for achievements such as arresting poachers, but might need solar panels, a bursary for the children or even a study area at home.
- Aug 20, 2019 - R 51.41
- "well done all rangers great job!!!" - anonymous
- Aug 10, 2019 - USD $ 13.79
- "So much respect for those who put their lives on the line each and everyday all to protect our wildlife." - Katheryn
- Aug 02, 2019 - R 205.64
- "What a good initiative..." - Admin