Name: Kim Wusten
Project Date: 19 March – 1 April 2017
Why did you choose to Volunteer with EHRA?
My friend Flo volunteered last year in Zimbabwe, a project dedicated to Lions. She selected this project and asked me to join. I am a big animal fan but the elephants and human aid aspect appeals a lot. It’s good to also focus on the core of the problem; lack of awareness and knowledge and EHRA understands that.
What was build week like?
Build week was great. The ‘owner’ of the water tank said he heard from others that the wall helps. It was good to build a wall AND muscles. We had so much fun with our group that even when it’s heavy, hot and dirty the mood was always really good. Old Mattias and his hip dance, his cat ringtone, Thomas/Michael/Stephan who are just gas (literally and in speak!) Duncan who managed to get scorpion/spider/centipedes in his bed!!!! Great week.
What happened on your patrol?
A Lot! This was a very cool patrol, ranging from proper 4×4 off road mud driving in rivers, driving through red dunes and out on the open grass areas. We’ve seen Mama Afrika’s herd, G6 with the ‘unknown’ herd and the H2 Herd at the Huab River area. One of the males passed us in between our cars and was so close I could have touched him. A mummy elephant and her two year old were also really close to us, unforgettable.
What will you remember most about your time with EHRA?
The feeling of living a more slow paced life where Mother Nature is ruling and very present. Here you have wildlife how it should be, not in a zoo and not in a national park but free. I will also remember the experience and knowledge of Chris and Mattias. There is so much you can learn from them. Plus my dream to sleep in a tree, like Rafiki from the Lion King, came true!!!
Name: Stephen Jeffery
Project dates: 19 Feb – 1 April 2017
Had you ever seen an elephant before?
Yes but only in Zooz or safari parks surrounded by cars/on the tele!
How did you feel when you first saw an elephant with EHRA and where did you see them (was it in camp/build week/patrol)?
First live elephant I saw was on the Wednesday afternoon of patrol week. It was amazing to see them all together eating away happily.
What did you learn about the problems of people and elephants living together?
Learnt of the difficulties in sharing the land between farmers and elephant with them in direction competition for water sources and food. And the problems arising from people not knowing how to properly act around elephants.
What will you always remember from you time with EHRA?
Voortrekker passing between the cars.
Dave the elephant coming up to say hello.
And sadly the ‘destroyed’ problem elephant that had been shot.
Name: Ruth Wemmer-Lueg
Project date: 20 March – 1 April 2017
Have you travelled or volunteered before? If so where?
I have travelled to many different countries like India, Nepal, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Venezuela, Mexico..I stayed with EHRA for 2 weeks in February 2016
Was the experience with EHRA what you thought it would be?
As I was here before I knew what to expect that was why I decided to come back!
How did you like sleeping outside?
I liked sleeping outside under the stars very much. It is amazing to wake up at night and look into the sky. Luckily we had mosquito nets!
How did you find not washing?
It was really a problem for me even if I felt really dirty. I realise again how precious water is. In our countries we waste water too often!