Tusk is dedicated to protecting wildlife, alleviating poverty and promoting education across Africa.
Tusk Trust was founded in 1990 since when it has developed considerable experience initiating and funding conservation and community development programmes right across Africa. The charity, which boasts Prince William as its Royal Patron, has successfully invested over £16m in over 100 projects since its formation.
Tusk’s projects are intended not only to protect wildlife, particularly endangered species, but also help alleviate poverty through sustainable development programmes and promote education amongst rural communities. As the ever-expanding human population and its demand for more land brings increasing conflict with wildlife, Tusk’s aim is to forge a link between the preservation of Africa’s natural heritage and the future of its land, culture and people.
Today, the plight of Africa’s elephant and rhino populations, which are being decimated by poachers fuelled by the rising demand for ivory and rhino horn in the Far East, is one of the charity’s biggest challenges.
Support for communities
Tusk aims to support community programmes which allow people to view wildlife as their asset. Tusk’s approach to conservation recognises that the long term future for wildlife and natural resources is dependant on sustainable rural development. As a result a number of the charity’s initiatives incorporate work to improve security, healthcare, and develop employment through responsible tourism.
Investing in education
In Africa many children do not get the opportunity to attend secondary school. Tusk believes that if conservation is to succeed then environmental education needs to be promoted at this early age.
Tusk’s PACE – Pan African Conservation Education – project has been designed to help address this need, communicating ideas on environmental issues across the continent. This set of education materials has been designed to act as both an education tool and a stimulus to adopt sustainable policies.
In recent years Tusk has sponsored the construction or refurbishment of rural primary and secondary schools specifically catering for children living in areas rich in biodiversity and neighbouring existing Tusk conservation programmes
The conservation of African wildlife is Tusk’s primary objective with substantial funding being applied towards the protection of many threatened species such as elephant, rhino, cheetah, chimpanzee, gorilla, African wild dog and marine species like turtles.
On average 40% of Tusk’s grant funding is directed to projects whose aim is the protection of wildlife. In keeping with Tusk’s philosophy, these projects take an integrated approach to conservation within communities, combining the protection of wildlife with the sustainable management of natural resources.
A friend of mine and a trustee of the WWF picked up on my husband’s specific interest in Kenya…Paul grew up there. He put us in touch with Charlie Mayhew, founder and Chief Executive of Tusk and to be honest, once you’ve met Charlie that’s it really!
Charlie arranged for us to visit some of the Tusk projects in Kenya, which was a truly incredible experience. Once we understood what they needed to achieve and how we wanted to help we became fully engaged with the project and I was flattered to be asked to become a patron.Why Deborah became involved