ABOUT THE FOUNDATION

Space for Elephants Foundation (SEF) was created by a group of concerned individuals about the livelihood of Elephants and their restriction to move from one area to another.

The more you stress elephant populations, the more they breed – the opposite from other animal species. Elephants were the path makers / road builder in the past, linking communities and different Bio-regions.

It is a national non-profit conservation, research and educational organisation that facilitates more space through a network of corridors throughout the country to give back to the elephants their SPACE and thus a sound economic base for the people living adjacent to the corridors.

Working together with the MAN and BIOSPHERE Program (MaB) the aim is to create a safe environment for our wildlife whilst still ensuring the well-being of human beings.

How it all started

Elephant families were translocated to Pongola Game Reserve in Maputaland. The bulls were monitored by specialist game rangers. They moved out of the fenced areas of Pongola Game Reserve, explored neighbouring game reserves to visit other elephant cow herds.

No aggression was noted. The neighbouring farmers and game reserves assisted by cutting fences to allow the bull elephants safe passage through their land.

The bulls subsequently returned to Pongola Game Reserve and a year later, the cows that they had visited, left their game reserve, and arrived at the fences of Pongola Game Reserve.

“Let this happen throughout the country” thought one of the elephant owners, Dr Heinz Kohrs. & Space for Elephants Foundation was born.

Objectives

  • To create space for elephants and other species to allow them to migrate, disperse and propagate in accordance with the concept of biodiversity through corridors and linkages of wildlife areas.
  • To manage wildlife in a sustainable manner so as to enhance the biodiversity of plants, animals, water and land.
  • To find and promote an African approach to conservation through active participation of the people.
  • To promote, support and implement education and training in conservation, eco-tourism and small business enterprises and capacity building.
  • To provide the relevant areas with an economic base by creating opportunities for small business enterprises as well as providing participation in established businesses.
  • Sustaining Wildlife & African Unity

How do we do it?

SEF is in the fortunate position that it has dedicated Trustees that make their time available to SEF and do not earn an income from SEF for just being a Trustee. This allows SEF to dedicate most of the funds, received from sponsors, to projects and the development of corridors.  The establishment of corridors, range expansion etc entails but are not limited to the following:

  • Negotiations with landowners, local communities, provincial and national governments.
  • Project Funding are being applied for specific projects
  • Workshops are being held with all the parties involved.
  • Relationships and responsibility structures are formed between the parties
  • Access control are being negotiated and formalised
  • Agreements are being drawn up between the different parties
  • Employment opportunities are discussed between land owners and local communities
  • Protection of the animals and early warning systems are being put in place
  • Fencing of a corridor or range expansion are completed and fences are dropped between different owners.