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Jan 17, 2013

Developing

Grace in her new school uniform, proud!
Grace in her new school uniform, proud!

The year has gone so fast, the project has developed a lot and really quickly, I can hardly keep up myself. Luckily it is all for the good. A big “thank you” to everybody who is supporting this new project and all it’s developments. I updated some of the information on the project page, because we are doing much more then just running two eco-clubs. We work closely with schools and post matric students in the Limpopo region to empower, motivate and help find jobs and schools which will enable the young adults of the area to better themselves and their future. We help them find out what they want to do with their future, help them with job placements or college placements, as well as run our eco-clubs in the villages which promote environmental friendly ways of living, and how to become a spokes person for your community and set the right example.

We also changed our name. It is no longer Daktari Outreach, which was too vague. Our new name it Daktari YEP, which stands for Youth Empowerment Program. What do you think, much better right?

At the eco-club meetings the students get lessons about different animals, like the big 5, the small 5, but also about the antelope, birds and about animal behavior. We also discuss endangered species and rhino poaching. Especially the rhino poaching is a big topic at the moment since South Africa already lost 668 rhinos in 2012! These children live in the area where the poachers live; we have to make sure that they feel for the rhino so that they can influence their peers. We can save the rhino by educating this generation!

It is not only the lessons itself that make the students gain knowledge; it’s also the fact that all the lessons are in English, so they develop their language skills. The form a team, a group, they feel like they belong to something, that they mean something. It also keeps them off the streets. They even develop politeness skills and talk to international volunteers makes them more confident, all of this will help them towards a brighter future. Most jobs in this area are tourism related so to have good English communication skills and general knowledge about the environment will enhance their chance on getting a job in the future.

Kutullo one of the post matric (he finished his high school) students applied with our help to SA Wildlife college, so he can study more about the environment. He has an interview next week Monday! We all believe he can make it and will get in. It would be the opportunity he needs to change his life.

Grace, one of the students of the eco-club got transferred to a new school, a private school! Here she will get all the opportunities she needs to achieve her dreams! On the picture you can see her in her wonderful new school uniform! We still need your help, we found a sponsor that covers a big part of her school fees, but she still needs a uniform, school supplies, transport and sometimes to be able to go on a trip. You can read her whole story on her micro project page. http://www.globalgiving.org/microprojects/help-grace-to-achieve-her-dreams/

Again thank you for your amazing support! Thanks to your donation these children have a chance to a better life and you are saving the environment at the same time.

Fox showing his recycled car.
Fox showing his recycled car.
Kutullo and Kabelo working on their CV's.
Kutullo and Kabelo working on their CV's.
Maite teaching her peers.
Maite teaching her peers.
Volunteers joining to the club and making friends.
Volunteers joining to the club and making friends.
Thumisho showing his certificate of the club 2012.
Thumisho showing his certificate of the club 2012.

Links:

Dec 4, 2012

happy baby-making, a great release & new roommates

Dearest Sponsors and enthusiasts,

Andreas here again, just like last time ;) The only difference is that I now am the fundraising manager for DAKTARI. So basically I try to get us donations so we can keep doing what we do. And thanks to you guys, we can!!! Thanks to you we can help lots of underprivileged children and animals. ;)

 

First of all, I would like to tell you all about the animal news here at DAKTARI:

A lot of changes have occurred in the last 2 month, we have 3 ostrich eggs in an incubator and 3 tortoise eggs buried under the tortoise enclosure!! Ostrich eggs only take a couple of weeks until they hatch (small chance of survival but we have our fingers crossed) but tortoise eggs take 12 to 18 months!!! So who knows, maybe next year there might suddenly rise 3 baby tortoises out of the ground! :o

Also, a new marmoset monkey named King Kong joined our sweet Princess Maya. He is only a year old and came from a monkey sanctuary nearby. He is very active and jumps all over the place. Luckily Maya is not too annoyed with him and takes very good care of this youngster.

As you know we educate the local children on caring for wild animals. Apparently we are doing a great job! A boy called Willington called us one day saying he saved a baby scrub hare in the village he lives in. The baby’s mum died and Willington decided to give the baby to DAKTARI. We are taking very good care of ‘Willy” and he is growing and doing great.

Scotty and Easy we told you about last time are doing great as well! Easy is free now and comes into camp whenever she is hungry and Scotty had surgery on her broken wing. She is still recovering but there is a very small chance she might fly again. We have our fingers crossed for her!!

Our caracal ‘Zulu’, the one who attacked May and was brought to Makalali for rehabilitation, has been released! He is doing perfectly fine in the wild and is now hanging out in trees so the tourists there can’t see him too often. ;)

If you have been following us on Facebook you probably saw our poll where we were trying to decide on a new name for an animal. A new Bush baby has been born!!! He is still tiny but is taken care of by his mommy. Eventually the Bush baby has been named ‘Diego’.

 

But DAKTARI is more than just caring for animals. We also focus on education!!

In this matter we got a little help from a volunteer who came to DAKTARI for 2 months. Her name is Agnes Deblangy, she donated a story created by her aunt about an Indian elephant called Nesha travelling Africa. Once here in South Africa he witnesses something that shocks him t the bone: POACHING! He decides to unite all the African animals and scares away the evil poachers. It’s an amazing story with a marvelous life lesson. The children absolutely love it!! They sing along with the songs and are cheer when the poachers are scared from the land.
Thank you Agnes!!!

 

But this is not the only donation we have received lately…
There were a lot of corporates who were kind enough to help us out!

We have received a LOT of dog food from Hill’s. And we’re very lucky with this since we have 6 dogs, a porcupine and a couple of antelope that truly love this dog food so it disappears quite quickly. ;)

Formalito donated us a camera trap, which takes pictures whenever something moves in its sight. This means we can see all the animals roaming around camp in the night! The children love it, and so do we. ;)

Stihl decided to help us once again. They have donated us more power tools over the years but this time really outdid themselves! They gave us a brush cutter!!! This is incredibly handy if you have a very big camp like ours to take care of and not enough much time to do it ;)

Also, Africa Geographic has caught the DAKTARI-virus. They were kind enough to donate us hundreds of magazines for the children! They love them! And we even gave a couple to our friends at the Green Kids Initiative and the schools in the area.

Madmimi a really good and easy mailing platform has donated us an upgraded account. This way we can easily reach all our contacts for newsletters etc.

 

And then we have a couple of private donations as well!!!

Gotthif Riexinger organized a party for his birthday and gave all its benefit to Daktari Germany.

Arja and Wilco, children of previous volunteers Anga and Gerrit Dijkhout from the Netherlands organized a birthday party in benefit of Daktari.

We built a new boma where the children have their leaving party and bonfire, this was kindly sponsored by one of previous volunteers, Kayley Flukes who raised $1550 AUD.

One of our current volunteers Lizzy Garland organized a mini-golf tournament before arriving at Daktari and raised $688 AUD.

So there you go, all updated! ;)


In name of all the children, animals, volunteers & staff here at DAKTARI,
Thank you very much for all your support!!!!
We wish all of you a very merry Christmas and happy new year!!

Oct 18, 2012

New training developed for the local students

The children at the eco-club
The children at the eco-club

Firstly I want to say “thank you for your support!”  Without your support I wouldn’t be able to keep developing this project the way we are doing now.

We are still going to two eco-clubs every week with each approximately 40 local students, where we teach them everything they want to know about the environment and the animals but also the economic impact of poaching. The new and exciting news is that we developed a new training week that a group of selected students can participate in!

Each selected student will get a week at Daktari where they will receive these extra lessons and coaching sessions, these are all about self-development. The exercises are designed in a way for the students to figure out their own passion, dreams and goals in life and where they should start with the first step. All is developed in a way that shows them that they, themselves, CAN change their future, even if it is with little steps at the time.

It also gives a great overview of the needs and obstacle for us as a project where they really DO need our help, things that they can’t do on their own, because of a lack of resources. It is not only about finding your goals and direction, it is also about getting to know yourself, your character, your strengths and weaknesses. All of this might sound so logical to you, but these students never got this in school! It is a whole new concept. So far we trained four students out of the selected 20 and you can see a huge change in one week. We touch subjects as how to present yourself in a job interview, how to write a resumé and a cover letter and what is body language and how does that work. It is interesting for me as a project manager to see the huge changes and the need where we can step in and help out!

Speaking of which, I would like to ask for your help. I have one student, Kabelo, she wants to become a charted accountant and she has a National Certificate in Financial Management N6, but is looking for a 18 month internship before she can further her studies, how great would it be if a company (overseas) could provide that for her! So if you know someone who might be able to help, please contact me (Risette de Haas info@daktaribushschool.nl).

We have more great news to share; we also had the opportunity to offer a group of our students a practical experience in the bush, where a group of field guides in training took the children out on a walk and thought them everything about birds and tracks! The children and the field guides were super enthusiastic. After the walk the students had to draw a track of one of the animals they saw, later on they could check this with a real track and see the differences. All of this inspired one of the students to change his goal in live into becoming a field guide!

In Hoedspruit, the nearby town, there was a market organized where Daktari held a stand as well. This market was all about sustainability, very interesting. We had the opportunity to invite some of the students to visit the market, where they could walk around and speak to the different companies holding a stand there. They learned about glass recycling, other conservation projects and why they are necessary and many other things. They also had the chance to talk to a rhino! This is Chris Daniel who wrote a children’s book, Bongi’s Quest, with a great story to explain the impact of rhino poaching, with his initiative he talks to children all over the world, and our students could hear his story and meet Bongi! Check the short movie on YouTube that was on the South African TV about this market: http://youtu.be/wWw3Sx-ebsQ

Students typing their own cover letter!
Students typing their own cover letter!
On the bushwalk, learning about tracks.
On the bushwalk, learning about tracks.
Checking if their track is the same.
Checking if their track is the same.
Pledging for recycling by the students.
Pledging for recycling by the students.
Meeting Bongi!
Meeting Bongi!

Links:

 
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