Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

November 2017 Shamwari Education Blog

This month we only had two groups as the schools had been busy with the year end examinations. One of the schools that visited was coming for the second time to us on their way to Port Alfred for a hockey match.

The other one was a special needs school from Grahamstown which also visit us yearly. With both schools we first gave them a short introduction, telling them about the Born Free Foundation. We talk about the different adaptations animals have to survive in the wild including what horns are made from and the shape of the different horns for the different animals. We also set out the site rules - no noise and to respect nature. We then take them for the sanctuary tour. In the tour we tell them the different stories of the rescued cats in the sanctuary. Why they could not be released into the wild and why we do not allow breeding.

After the tour we take them out to see the free roaming animals in the main wildlife reserve. On the drive they were told about the different species we saw on the day. Different plant species in the reserve, territorial markings and other signs of the wild.

With the group from Grahamstown we were out for only one and half hours because the learners lose focus very quickly. With the other school we had a full drive and they learnt a lot. They enjoyed themselves immensely.

I visited the community as well, assisting with the installation of the water tanks at Sandisulwazi High School, which is in the community close to the reserve, from funds from Global Friends. They have a shortage of water for ablutions as the municipal supply gets cut off in the morning. Up until now, for the whole day they don’t have water to flush the toilets.

We installed a tank for each of the two ablution blocks. The municipal supply gets pumped into the tank while the water is still flowing and when it cuts off the water will be reserved in the tank. We also installed a pressure pump for each tank to push water into the toilets. In addition we fitted gutters to harvest rain water into the same tanks. The learners can now use the toilets for the whole day at school, increasing sanitation.

Gutters and down pipes for harvesting rain water
Gutters and down pipes for harvesting rain water

Below is one of the two tanks installed at the school.

I also went to Hendrik Kanise combined school to check on their vegetable garden fence as they were complaining about the livestock that eat their vegetables. The fence is not in good state and it will need to be replaced in the new year.

  • Water tank
  • Broken fence
Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906


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