Today ‘Travels to my Elephant‘ was launched! Come on a journey with Elephant Family, Quintessentially Foundation and lots of amazing artists (including us) to celebrate the life of Mark Shand and help raise £1 million for Asian elephants!
We will be designing a rickshaw that will be auctioned off to help fund a future for elephants. Stay tuned for more information on the fleet of beautifully decorated rickshaws that will grace the streets of London this summer……. and progress on our design!
Elephant Family has set itself the task of saving the Asian elephant from extinction in the wild by tackling the greatest threats through safeguarding habitat and reconnecting their forest homes.
Assam’s elephant corridors
The beautiful forests of Assam, northeast India, are home to 1,700 endangered Asian elephants. Elephant families, lead by the matriarch, journey along ancient pathways through the forest just as their ancestors have done for centuries.
Unfortunately these important pathways, or corridors, have become fragmented due to human settlements and farmland leading to conflict between people and elephants. Stressed and hungry elephants are forced to cross between areas of forest where they damage homes, crops and endangered human lives. In many cases communities have retaliated by killing elephants.
Elephant Family is devoted to protecting these corridors and providing an alternative for the communities. The voluntary relocation of people out of elephant corridors to safe new homes nearby provides them with productive farmland out of danger and allows elephants clear pathways. Safeguarding corridors allows elephants and humans to peacefully coexist.
But a project like this takes time and money. Thanks to generous support and donations Elephant Family has completed the first half of the project and in 2015 aims to complete the project with the money raised from Travel to my Elephant.
Why are Asian elephants endangered?
The wild Asian elephant population has decreased by 90% in the past 100 years leaving as few as 35,000. There is a combination of reasons for this.
The loss of forests where elephants live has left isolated patches forcing elephants to move through areas where people now live seeking food and often raiding crops, and in some countries accidentally being killed on highways and railways.
Despite Asian elephants having less ivory than African elephants, they are still killed for the illegal ivory trade. However the illegal capture of baby elephants from the wild to be trained for entertainment and tourism businesses is happening at an unsustainable rate.
There is a real danger that wild Asian elephants populations could be lost forever within 30 years but Elephant Family believes there are ways to ensure room on the planet for wild Asian elephants.