We appreciate any help or support you can provide towards our efforts to helping endangered species by supporting our projects in partnership with the Chipembere Rhino Foundation in South Africa, the Pygmy Elephant Project in Borneo and the United Kingdom Orangutan Appeal for Borneo, all of which can be found on our Projects Page.

News Edition 01

Crying Rhino B&W Yellow Wheel
RAGES NEWS EDITION 01-13

This is our first bulletin #01 August 2013.

You are all invited to contribute and become authors and we are looking for an editor.  John Glassford will be the editor until someone takes over the position.  We are looking for critique, ideas and suggestions for the monthly news.

 1.  CHAIR REPORT

 

Talk is cheap

This is the message that I want to convey this month and onwards as we grow.  We have enough members now to start work on one project namely, the Rotary Club of Kenton-on-Sea’s project, Save Our Rhino.

We will have some ideas on how we can support them.  Jo Wilmot and the South Africans are working on a Rhino International Survival Kit or RISK.  Some of the items required by the project they support at Chipembere include:

Bullet proof vest
R4000.00  US$390
Uniform Shirt
R225.00  US$22
Uniform Pant
R195.00  US$19
Uniform Shorts
R155.00  US$15
Uniform Jacket
R349.00  US$33
Uniform Boots
R469.00  US$46
Handheld radio
R2200.00  US$216
Night Vision Binoculars
R17000.00  US$1665
Binoculars
R2000.00  US$196
Flir Thermal Imagery vehicle Pathfinder camera
R36 000.00 US$3500
Flir Handheld Thermal Imaging camera
R68 000.00  US$6660
Cellphone airtime per month
R500.00  US$50
Head Torch
R360.00  US$35
Handheld Torch
R450.00  US$44
Spotlight
R1500.00  US$147
Telonics Telemetry Receiver
R7000.00  US$685
Telonics Telemetry Aerial
R1200.00  US$118
Telonics Horn Implant device
R2750.00  US$269

E50

Flir Handheld Thermal Imaging camera

VHF Tracking collar – R 3000.00 US$291
VHF Horn implant – R3900.00 US$378
GPS Satellite collar – R23000.00 US$2,230
Handheld VHF Receiver – R9000.00 US$872
Antennae Short Range (compact) – R3000.00 US$291
Antennae Long Range – R1500.00 US$145
Ground to Air Handheld Radios – R10000.00 US$969
Night Vision Generation 1 Handheld Scope – R6500.00 US$630
Camera Traps with Realtime MMS and Infrared Black Flash – R5000.00 US$485
Rhino DNA Kits – R600.00 US$58
Micro-Chips (3 per Rhino) – R400.00 US$39
Helicopter Surveillance Flights – R3000.00/Per Hour US$291
Emergency Helicopter on Standby – R25000.00 US$2,423

Transmitters

Above:  Leg transmitters and VHF Horn Transplant with a microchip.

Other ideas on what is needed in such a survival kit are being researched and we will have more details in our next monthly newsletter.

With 65 members now from 44 different clubs and 26 districts in 14 countries,  I feel we are in a good position to start.  It is ACTION that is needed from the start.  We need to explore ways that we can involve our club and clubs in our districts to become involved in a very practical manner.

2.  RAGES MEMBER’S ACTIVITIES LATEST NEWS

 

This is one section of the newsletter that you can all contribute to as and when you have any news on any activities that you have planned or carried out for RAGES.

I can report that I gave our first RAGES presentation to a Rotary club this week.  I was invited to talk on RAGES by the Rotary Club of Wagga Wagga Murrumbidgee.  A young club in District 9700.  Wagga Wagga  Murrumbidgee is 7 years old with 20 members and 5 prospective new members.

Their President is Lauren Slater a young lady doing a great job with the club.  Lauren has joined RAGES as has Sarah Groves from the same club.  There is even a chance that Sarah and another Rotarian from  Wagga Wagga  Murrumbidgee, Maddi Smith, will join us climbing Mount Kenya in 2015.

I urge you all to get a copy of the power point and to present a talk to your club and other clubs in your area.  The message is at times disturbing but that is reality in what Africa is facing right now with the loss of so many rhinos and elephants.

3.  MEET OUR MEMBERS

 

Two of our first members to join and the reason we started this process of obtaining RI approval for our Rotarian Action Group are Bruce Steele-Grey and Jo Wilmot.  Jo and Bruce are members of the Rotary Club of Kenton-on-Sea and are working hard to Save Our Rhino in South Africa.

Jo Wilmot and Bruce Steel-Grey Lisbon Web

Jo Wilmot and PP Bruce Steele-Grey on their stand at Lisbon this year. 

4. LETTER FROM Dr. WILLIAM FOWLDS.

 

One of our two rhino consultants is Dr. William Fowlds and here is his letter accepting our invitation to become on of our consultants to RAGES:

Picture1

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Dear Jo and John, 1/8/2013

Re: RAGES – PROPOSED ROTARIAN ACTION GROUP FOR ENDANGERED SPECIES

Thank you very much for inviting me to join the board of this very exciting and
meaningful initiative. I would be honored to assist your efforts and am very humbled by
your offer to have me as part of your team.

I look forward to hearing of the next phases in this process.

Regards
Dr Will Fowlds
Investec Rhino Lifeline

JM WF & Thandi 22 July 2013

Dr Fowlds with Thandi and a volunteer. The story of Thandi has to be told so here is one link to Thandi:

THANDI- LOVE AND HOPE

5.  SAVE AFRICA RHINO FOUNDATION.

We have been contacted by the President of this Foundation Nicholas Duncan from Perth in Western Australia and they have a great track record over 25 years now.  They primarily look after rhinos in Zimbabwe and are looking to Rotary for support.

What interests us is the work they are doing from the point of view of the end user of rhino horn.  Lynn Johnson based in Melbourne in Victoria is at the forefront of this campaign and some of her work can be seen below:

Picture1Picture2

More & More Rhino Horn is Poisoned the effect of giving poisoned rhino horn to sick children is not fully known.  Is it worth the risk? 

I would like to think that we could work with this group in the future.

Save Africa Rhino Foundation.

6.  SOME PHOTOS FROM AUGUST.

 

A. Rhinos

Thandi

Remember little Thandi, who was a victim of poaching?

Due to the extensive care and medical attention from Dr Will Fowlds and other vets, she is on the path to full recovery.

Story on Thandi and Dr Fowlds.

B. Elephants

DSWT Tsavo Teens

Feeding time at Ithumba Tsavo Park East in Kenya.!

The older orphans at the Ithumba Rehabilitation Unit in Tsavo East National Park receive their milk feeds before heading off for a mud bath.

The main aim of our Orphans’ Project is to rear the elephant calves in such a way that in their own time they take their rightful place back in the wild. No space in captivity is adequate for an elephant, however attractive it may appear to us humans.

Read more on the Orphans’ Project and how you can help by supporting them:

David Sheldrick Half Way There

C. Orangutans
Orangutan_color_page (1)

“Orangutangled: Monkeying Around On High,” a 2011 watercolor by Jessica Stitt ’10 of a Bornean orangutan (pongo pygmaeus) in the forest in Borneo. Image: Jess Stitt/OuTrop 2012.

The photo above comes from an article sent to me my one of our RAGES members Sharon Flynn President of the RC of Jersey City, New Jersey).

” I think you’ll find this article featured in Ezra Magazine to be interesting.  “Ezra” was “Ezra Cornell”, the founder of Cornell University, where I received my Bachelor’s Degree.”

Sharon.

EZRA MAGAZINE

7.  NEWS FROM AFRICA

President Uhuru Kenyatta from Kenya visited China during August on a trade and infrastructure visit and amongst the many meetings he also addressed the poaching issue.  President Uhuru and the Kenyan delegation were treated to a full ceremonial welcome by the President of China Xi Jinping.

China Delegation from Kenya

Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Uhuru Kenyatta witness the signing of Bilateral Agreements between National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich and his Chinese Counterpart at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China.

The President said he had acquired China’s support to combat wildlife poaching in Kenya August 23, 2013.  China has offered to improve surveillance around national parks and game reserves and also helping with capacity building to enable the Kenya Wildlife Service deal with poachers effectively.

‘The Chinese Government understands that poaching is a problem. The most important thing is that they are not just talking about it but working to solve it,’ President Kenyatta said.

Read more: Anti-Poaching China to support Kenya

{Editor’s Note:  The best thing that China can do is to close down the 35 ivory carving factories in China today}.

8.  Dr. FOWLDS IN VIETNAM.  27th August 2013

 

Here is the latest news from Dr. William Fowlds.

Dr Fowlds

Investec Rhino Lifeline, Viet Nam. End of Day 3. The workshop on “Sharing information and improving awareness for rhino horn consumption demand reduction” was hosted by Cities Viet Nam (Department of Forestry) in conjunction with HSI and attended by NGO’s like Traffic, WSPA, Animals Asia etc, many press delegates as well as government administrations. In summary, it went very well today. Even better than I had expected actually although we are under no illusions about how far we still have to go. Although there is some denial from VN public about the validity of international claims that they are the largest importers of rhino horns, the Viet Nam government officials kept supporting these claims and highlighting the need for demand reduction. All supported the need to dispel myths re the cancer claims and even the minority in the meeting who say there is/was some small value for rhino horn in TCM say there are more responsible alternatives and demand for rhino horn needs to be stopped. Now its time for follow up meetings with Cities VN to plot a way forward.

NEWS ITEM HERE

Dr Fowlds 2 in Vietnam

Good follow up meeting with Cities Vietnam today and HSI to map a way forward. Very good intent showing.  A great start!

9. LATEST NEWS

World Rhino Day September 22nd 2013

World Rhino Day September 22nd

World Rhino Day 2013 Events

Mount Kilimanjaro Climb for Rhinos.

NO I am not climbing Kilimanjaro again however there are some who are doing it for the rhino.  This Wednesday 4th September Save the Rhino are holding an information evening for anyone interested in taking part in Rhino Climb Kilimanjaro.  A good idea for our group? Climbing mountains? How about joining me on Mount Kenya in 2015?

Mount Kenya Giraffes

Mount Kenya 2015 DETAILS Here.

We are raising funds for our Education and AIDS orphans projects in Africa as well as Legacy Australia.  Why not join us to raise funds for our RAGES projects as well?

10. SUMMARY

 

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have joined RAGES a proposed Rotarian Action Group.  Obviously I do not like the word proposed as it is ACTION that is required right now.  However whatever happens this group will go forward.

If each club that is represented in our membership base does one fund raiser to support one project, then we will have done well.  If then one or more districts get involved that will be a bonus.

We must not neglect the youth amongst us from the members of the Wagga Wagga Murrumbidgee Rotary club to the Rotaractor  Lauren Schmenk President of the Rotaract Club of Fanshawe in Canada, who have just joined us.  As a young man I lived amongst these species we are now trying to save.  Never did I imagine that the same herds of elephants and families of rhinos could be lost forever.   I was lucky to have been chased by elephants and a rhino or three, black rhinos are cranky chaps!

It is imperative that our children and grand children can have that experience of seeing these magnificent animals in their natural home free and thriving.  As Rotarians and Rotaractors we can do our bit to help these animals survive and thrive.

I do have a full time career building straw bale homes for our clients and another full time job in Rotary, and like everything in life this work we are about to embark on will require a team effort, board members and members alike, I assure you that all ideas are welcome.

We need to get our communication channels working and working well.  Some options:

1. My Rotary Discussion Group.  Up and running but I feel limited.

2. Yahoo Group for all members.  Probably our best bet for discussions, document storage and photos.  As well voting on issues if needed.

3. RAGES Facebook Open Group and Closed Group.  Transient but effective. 

4. RAGES Web Site Essential and will improve.

5. Bulk Email OK for now but as we grow hard to manage.  Probably needed.

All for now and please contribute your ideas, stories and photos for all to share.  Early days I know but we need to get started and the Rotary Club of Kenton-on-Sea have a wonderful project for us to get involved in.

Thank you to Jo Wilmot and Dr Will Fowlds for their contributions this month, you are both champions and I am sure that our RAGES members will take ACTION once they have read the report below:

Rhino Experience Kenton Rotary Club

Yours in Rotary

John Glassford

Chair Proposed RAGES.

Email john@glassford.com.au

61 2 6927 6027