With the removal of several snares found in front of Ilala Lodge Hotel during the past week, we thought it was high time to make mention of the incredible work done by the Victoria Falls Anti-Poaching Unit (VFAPU) – a non-profit organisation dedicated to the conservation of local wildlife and natural resources.
With numerous wildlife, such as elephant and warthog, regularly gracing the front lawns of the lodge, it’s easy to overlook the imminent danger of snares nearby, and the larger threat to game animals in Zimbabwe. In recent years, Ilala has worked hand in hand with this inspirational organisation, supporting them and sponsoring a number of members.
The Victoria Falls Anti-Poaching Unit (VFAPU) was established by Charles Brightman, a local Professional Guide, conservationist and safari operator, along with the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge. To this day, the organisation works closely with the Zimbabwean National Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, and the Zimbabwe Republic Police to counteract, and prevent, poaching in this beautiful country.
Conservation & Sustainability
The VFAPU spends much of their time removing snares (over 18 000 so far), apprehending both commercial and subsistence poachers, as well as rescuing and rehabilitating injured animals. In terms of education, the VFAPU and partners devote considerable time to the local communities, highlighting and reinforcing the benefits of conserving natural resources. A great deal of emphasis is placed on children, who are reached through school and community awareness programs. What’s more, to prevent the destruction of wildlife and wildlife resources, and to help put a stop to the circle of violence, the VFAPU seeks employment for convicted poachers where it can. Training programs are in place to teach various skills for both men and women, in many different industries including forestry and embroidery, and ex-poachers are placed in stable jobs, when possible.
Ways You Can Help
• Visit their website and spread the word.
• Embark upon an enriching conservation awareness field trip with VFAPU in the Zambezi National Park, part of the proceeds of which go into the Victoria Falls Wildlife Protection Trust.
• Join the VFPAU Facebook Group.
• Sponsor a Scout – For just $300 you can keep a Game Scout employed for a full month.
• Donate, donate, donate! Contact: Charles Brightman (+263 13 45821 or firstname.lastname@example.org)