Wildlife Rangers have one of the world’s most critical jobs, yet are some of the least protected. Aside from threats of injury and even death in their line of duty, nearly 50 percent of all rangers around the world also do not have access to emergency medical care or even clean drinking water.
In response, the Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation (aka Helping Elephants) launched a virtual event that hopes to raise awareness and funds to help #ProtectOurRangers. Through Run, Walk, Crawl for Rangers, fitness enthusiasts from around the world can help wildlife conservation efforts through active mobility.
Among the fundraiser’s beneficiaries is Masungi Georeserve, a globally-recognized protected landscape in Baras, Rizal. For over 20 years, the georeserve’s Wildlife Rangers have been on the frontlines of local conservation and ecotourism, looking after nearly 1,000 hectares of forested land in the Upper Marikina Watershed, and protecting the area from threats of illegal logging, quarrying, and land encroachment.
On July 24, two Wildlife Rangers were hospitalized after being attacked by encroachers inside one of Masungi’s reforestation sites. They have since recovered and filed a case for frustrated murder against the perpetrators.
“We highly appreciate this added support as we navigate the critical next months,” said Ann Dumaliang, Trustee of the Masungi Georeserve Foundation. “We thank everyone for their prayers and willingness to help through this challenging time. This does not break our spirit but only makes us stronger.”
Registered participants can log their daily steps throughout the month of September, with the goal of moving up the challenge leaderboard. The registration fee of USD 25 (roughly PHP 1,250) will be split among Wildlife Ranger teams of Masungi and four other conservation groups around the world: the Freeland Foundation in Thailand, the Wildlife Alliance and Cardamom Tented Camp Concession in Cambodia, and the Randilen Wildlife Management Area in Tanzania.
There’s no minimum step count or time limit—everyone is encouraged to go at their own pace, and keep track of their progress through a step counter on their phones or smart watches. Everyone also has the chance to win one of over 50 prizes up for grabs—including luxury resort stays in Thailand, Tanzania, and the Maldives redeemable over the next two years!
Let’s get moving and help protect our Rangers! Those interested can register for the challenge through the Thai Fit website.
Visit the Helping Elephants website for more information.