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African Wildlife Foundation gives $25 million to help wildlife and wildlife habitats in Africa

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The African Wildlife Foundation will invest $25 million over the next 4 years to support the work being done by local communities and African governments to protect wild lands and wildlife in Africa.

The pledge was made at the recent Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) conference in London.  AWF’s President Kaddu Sebunya said that poaching and illegal trade in wildlife poses an acute threat to Africa’s rich heritage of natural wealth.

Kaddu says that there is some recovery and stabilization of some vital wildlife populations.   AFW has invested $13.1 million to tackle the illegal wildlife trade in Africa and also a further $5.5 million with public-sector partners.   The total of $18.6 million has been used to:

  • Support anti-poaching efforts on the ground
  • Strengthen prosecutorial and judiciary processes
  • Put sniffer dogs in critical transit points
  • Campaign to stop demand in Asia

As a result:

  • 10 out of the 14 populations of elephants the funding has been targeting are increasing or are stable.
  • All rhino populations and 7 out of 9 carnivore populations that AWF supports are increasing or are stable
  • Prosecutors are building stronger case;  judges are delivery stronger sentences for wildlife crimes
  • Sniffer dogs have made over 250 finds

And now this most recent pledge will support programmes putting the priorities in place that came out of the London IWT conference:

  • To build African leadership and ownership of the illegal wildlife trade in Africa
  • Protect habitats and key populations of rhinos, elephants, great apes, large carnivores and giraffes
  • Enhance detection of wildlife crimes and strengthen the ability to prosecute and judge, putting criminals behind bars.

The belief is that Africa must own and drive the illegal wildlife trade work.  The London conference will help strengthen partnerships across borders to fight the illegal wildlife trade in an effective way.

Four key elements are crucial to give Africa’s wildlife a chance, according to AWF Chief Scientist and VP of Species Protection, Dr Philip Muruthi, and they are:

  1. Keep wildlife safe from poachers
  2. Make wildlife products difficult to move around
  3. Actively involve key local players
  4. Dampen the demand for wildlife products

Visit the African Wildlife Foundation

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