In 1992 FOAI elected to assist the Friends of Conservation, Mara
Conservation School Project. This program actively encourages the
participation of both children and their educators in conservation
activities. These programs are being developed and implemented in
conjunction with Wildlife Clubs of Kenya. While a number of schools in
Kenya's Maasai Mara are targeted for this program, we appropriated
$3,000 for two schools ($1500 per school) to help establish this program
at the Talek and Kawai Schools.
FOAI Chairman Emeritus Bonnie Bishop, President Scarlett Adams, and
International Advisory Board member and former Executive Vice-President
of Friends of Conservation John Webley attended the presentation of the
donation to the Talek School in 1992.
In June of 2001, Scarlett Adams and the FOAI Board returned to the Mara
to visit the Nkoilale School and leave a supply of books, tools and
school materials for their Conservation Club Program.
While in Kenya, Scarlett visited also with Friends of Conservation Staff
Simon Nkoitoi and Helen Gibbons, FOC Programmes Coordinator, and
discussed other ways that FOAI might work with Friends of Conservation
on different projects.
In 1972, Cynthia Moss started the Amboseli Elephant Research Project at
Amboseli National Park in Kenya. Since then she and her research
associates have identified and recorded more than 1,400 elephants. She
has authored a number of books and her work has been featured in a
several wildlife documentaries.
In June of 2001 the FOAI Board visited the Cynthia Moss Amboseli
Elephant Research Project to learn about the herds of elephants in this
park and the conservation efforts taking place to help assure their
survival. FOAI also made a donation on behalf of the group.
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The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust was established in memory of David
Sheldrick, founder Warden of Kenya's giant Tsavo East National Park.
From its inception in 1977 the Trust has played an extremely significant
and important role in Kenya's conservation effort. Tsavo National Park
is the Trust's main focus. It is Kenya's largest wildlife refuge, and
offers the best long-term hope for the perpetuation of a greater number
of species than any other Park in the world. The Trust has also been
active in an educational capacity in the Nairobi area, as well through
articles for the Wildlife Clubs of Kenya and the Press. It has funded
field trips for students and provided advanced training in wildlife
management for promising students.
Dr. Daphne Sheldrick manages the animal orphanage, at the edge of
Nairobi National Park, where she oversees the rehabilitation of numerous
elephant, rhino and other animal orphans. Through the Trust's input,
other elephants have been saved elsewhere in Africa. Many older
elephant orphans have been retrieved in an emaciated condition during
drought periods, and once rehabilitated, have been successfully reunited
with wild herds. In the summer of 2001 members of FOAI visited with
Dr. Sheldrick and discussed ways that FOAI might be of service to her
efforts in the future. FOAI also made a financial contribution to her
efforts. Dr. Sheldrick serves on the International Advisory Board of
Friends of Africa International.
For additional information please refer to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
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The Sweetwaters Sanctuary is located in a game reserve near Nanyuki,
Kenya. A number of chimpanzee orphans that have been rescued from other
countries are kept at Sweetwaters, as chimpanzees are not native to
Kenya. Their plight is the largely the result of habitat destruction,
the bushmeat trade, and the killing of mothers so that their infants can
be sold as pets, or for medical research and entertainment industries.
Also some die from infections from wounds caused by snares set for other
Sweetwaters is home to 22 chimps, and is in need of additional chimp
housing and additional fencing. The Sweetwaters facility is managed by
Director Annie Olivecrona. Friends of Africa International members
visited this Sanctuary in June 2001 and were given a tour of the
facility by Ms. Olivecrona, and then made a contribution to the work
being done there.
For additional information on Jane Goodall's work, please refer to the Jane Goodall Institute
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William Holden was the number one box office star for many years,
starring in nearly 80 films, including an Oscar for "Stalag 17".
However, he took great pride in his role as a conservationist and
founder of the WIlliam Holden Wildlife Foundation and the Mount Kenya
The William Holden Wildlife Education Center now spreads over 15 acres
of land on the Slopes of Mt. Kenya, and includes a youth hostel, lecture
hall, library, audio-visual facilities, llama compound, fish farm, tree
nursery, bio-gas and solar energy installations.
In June of 2001 the FOAI Board visited the Foundation, and was treated
to a personal tour by Don Hunt, co-founder. During their visit, a
donation to the Wildlife Education Center was made on behalf of FOAI.
For more information please see the William Holden Wildlife Foundation website.
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In early 1996 Friends of Africa was asked to participate in the Hirola
Antelope Conservation Project in memory of Mr. Bill Woodley, former Kenya Wildlife Service
game warden. The Hirola Project's purpose is to translocate a number of
this nearly extinct species of antelope which are threatened by heavy
poaching on the Kenya-Somali border. These antelope are being sent to
government and private game reserves throughout Kenya. These reserves
are better equipped to offer the antelope protection.
Ms. Lucile Ford of Nairobi contacted Friends of Africa International to
request assistance in the transfer of U.S. donations towards this
project. FOAI collected $30,000 on behalf of the Hirola Project from a
Mellon Foundation grant. Since then, FOAI has dispersed $3,900 for the
purchase of 10 antelope radio collars, which were shipped to the Kenya Wildlife Service.
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In the summer of 2000 Friends of Africa International was made aware of
an urgent situation involving the rescue of two chimpanzee orphan babies
whose mothers were killed by poachers in the Congo. Ms. Aly Wood, who
is based in Burundi with an aid agency, came upon the two little
refugees by happenstance, when a Samaritan who rescued them from a local
market brought them to her.
Having had experience with the chimp rehabilitation center in Burundi
under Jane Goodall, Ms. Wood temporarily adopted them until the transfer
papers could be arranged for the chimps to go to Ngamba Island
Chimpanzee Sanctuary in Uganda. This interim arrangement required
intensive care for the little chimps, with 24-hour caretakers, food and
veterinary care. FOAI assisted with expenses for the temporary care of
the chimps until their transfer to Ngamba Island.
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In the summer of 1994, FOAI President Scarlett Adams travelled to
Nairobi, Kenya, to visit the organization's projects in the Maasai Mara.
While on a reconnaissance mission there, it was made apparent that the
area was stricken by a serious drought whereby grasslands were dried up
and the Maasai cattle, as well as wild game, were dying off in
significant numbers due to lack of forage.
The Maasai people as well were suffering due to crop failures, and were
dependent on outside aid of grain supply for their daily sustenance. In
one such case, a long-awaited grain supply fell short of demand, with
Maasai from other drought areas arriving in the Mara to take advantage
of whatever grain they could coax from the relief shipments.
The inevitable shortage resulted in four local Maasai villages being
excluded from the dole, and the prospect of acute starvation. Both
Scarlett and FOAI Chairman Emeritus Bonnie Bishop who where were "on the
scene" appropriated funds on behalf of FOAI, to purchase a grain supply
to feed these four villages. It is a fortunate circumstance when red
tape can be avoided, and such relief is made available by being there at
the time of crisis. We are grateful to the late safari guide Glen
Cottar, and his staff, who facilitated the distribution.
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The city of Aspen and Pitkin County declared November 20-27, 1994
"Rwanda Relief Week." Co-sponsored by FOAI and Snowmass Chapel and
Community Center, a variety of fund-raising activities were organized
during the holiday period.
These funds were used for medicines, immunizations, vitamin supplements
and supplies for Rwandans, which had undergone incredible devastation
and acts of inhumanity during the prior year.
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During the summer of 1995, three of Malawi's park rangers, Elesani C.
Zakochera, Mercy Rose Banda and Hector M. Banda (left to right in the
photo) visited Aspen to share wildlife management experiences with some
of the U.S.'s leading environmental educators.
While in Aspen, the rangers helped with interpretitive activities at the
Aspen Center for Environmental Studies, Aspen Mountain and the Maroon
Bells, and explained their challenges in promoting the conservation in
their country. Their internship at ACES was made possible partially by
funding from FOAI.
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Thanks in part to donations from FOAI, the Abwenzi African Studies Video
Exchange Project, directed by Ms. Carlyle Kyzer, was successfully
completed. The exchange links and educates Malawaian and American
students through two videos. Abwenzi African Studies is a registered
nonprofit organization based in Aspen. Abwenzi has provided African
Studies classes and African pen pal opportunities to Aspen Middle School
students since 1989.
The video is now being used as part of the environmental education
program at Lake Malawi National Park. It introduces Malawians to
environmental issues, and encourages them to learn about wildlife in
Malawi. In the video filmed at the Aspen Center for Environmental
Studies, Aspen pen pals demonstrate a lesson about the aquatic web of
Little known in the U.S., Malawi hosts a wide variety of wildlife
including elephants, zebras, hippos, antelope, birds, reptiles and over
500 species of colorful indigenous fish. As one of the poorest and most
densely populated countries in Africa, Malawi faces critical loss of
The second video of the exchange illustrates a view of Malawian parks
and villages with an emphasis on environmental issues. Our long-term
connections with Malawi provide us an intimate African perspective. Ms.
Kyzer worked with Emmy award-winning cinematographer, Greg Poschman, who
spent one month filming on location in Malawi for Abwenzi, and 1993 ACE
award winning editor, Krysia Carter-Giez. The finished product was
given the great recognition of receiving an Emmy Award in documentary
'Zikomo kwambiri' ('thank you very much' in Chichewa language) to all
the Friends of Africa International who have supported Abwenzi!
For more information, please see the Letters from Africa website.
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