National Geographic presents
Africa is perhaps known best for its biodiversity and the beauty of its animal species. Yet, many of those species — including elephants — are threatened, endangered or reaching near-extinction levels due to poaching. What is the answer? The answer is Akashinga, an innovative and effective program that harnesses the power of the local community to combat poaching.
Damien Mander — a former Australian special forces soldier — has fought against poaching for years. He founded Akashinga, a team of rangers made up entirely of women who stand up for African wildlife. As the rangers train and learn how to protect elephants, they become stewards of these animals while developing personal and financial security and empowering their communities.
Mander’s strategic approach doesn’t simply provide guns to stop poachers. Instead, it calls for community involvement and support. If communities could recognize the benefits of protecting and preserving animals and their habitats, poaching could die out without the need for armed confrontations.
Maria Wilehm directed the Akashinga documentary, AKASHINGA: THE BRAVE ONES. This animal conservation documentary explores the innovative program, the courageous women rangers and the noble animals they protect. Three-time Academy Award winner James Cameron executive produced this wildlife conservation documentary, which celebrates the affect that this program has on people, communities, wildlife and the environment. This short documentary is sure to impact everyone who views it.
The International Anti-Poaching Foundation embraces an innovative, effective approach to conservation that empowers women and communities while protecting wildlife and habitats. Learn more about our impact or make a donation today.