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Renowned Photographers Join Rangers Across Africa to Bolster Conservation Efforts in 100 Protected Areas

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Global Wildlife Conservation (GWC) changed its name to Re:wild in 2021

Twenty-two Professional Photographers Join ‘Art for Wildlife Rangers’ Photo Sale to Benefit and Safeguard Iconic African Wildlife Species

Martin Buzora’s “The Surrogate Mother,” included in the ‘Art for Wildlife Rangers’ photo sale, shows Elias Mugambi, a ranger at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in northern Kenya. Mugambi often spends weeks away from his family caring for orphaned black rhinos like Kitui, pictured here. (Photo by Martin Buzora)

For immediate release

December 9, 2020

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All around the world, wildlife rangers play a critical role in addressing the twin crises of species extinction and climate change, and are among the planet’s staunchest guardians of wildlife and ecosystems. The Africa-wide collapse of wildlife tourism caused by the COVID-19 crisis has eliminated essential funding for wildlife protection. This threatens to undo years of rangers’ conservation gains, compromising decades of development and conservation work across Africa.

This giving season, 22 renowned photographers have joined rangers from 100 protected areas across 20 African countries to raise funds to support 10,000 ranger colleagues, who are enduring drastic cuts in salaries and resources this year. Despite the devastating economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, these rangers are still working tirelessly alongside local communities to safeguard the continent’s iconic wildlife.

“Wildlife photographers would not be able to capture these kinds of poignant images or connect global audiences with our wild world without the help of rangers, who continue to sacrifice their own well-being through this pandemic,” said Robin Moore, Global Wildlife Conservation’s director of communications, a National Geographic represented photographer, and a contributing photographer to the sale. “This photography sale gives us a chance to celebrate rangers, who are unsung heroes, while also ensuring that they can continue to do their important work, which is critical to a healthy planet for you, for me, and for all life on Earth.”

Leading photographers including Paul Nicklen, Steve Winter, Ami Vitale and David Yarrow are partnering with the Wildlife Ranger Challenge and Global Wildlife Conservation in ‘Art for Wildlife Rangers,’ an online sale of their exquisite images of wildlife and wildlands on Artsy.net. Never before has a photography sale supported such a wide network of protected areas across Africa and beyond. The sale will help better protect more than 4 million km2 of critical ecosystems, benefit 10,000 rangers, support over 64,000 livelihoods of communities living around the parks, and safeguard countless wildlife species.

The photo sale, which runs from today, Dec. 9, through Jan. 31, will release 60 fine art-quality images ranging from $250 to $46,550 that showcase the beauty of wildlife across Africa. The photo sale also gives individuals a chance to play a part in supporting conservation across the continent.

One hundred percent of the proceeds will be contributed to the Ranger Fund and administered by Tusk Trust to support rangers’ work on the ground alongside local communities in Africa, benefiting a number of protected sites. This includes sites that Global Wildlife Conservation supports, such as Sambel Kunda in The Gambia, Tzavo in Kenya, and Chewore in Zimbabwe.

The Scheinberg Relief Fund has generously agreed to provide matched funding for this photo sale, doubling the value of each photo purchase up to $500,000 USD. The Scheinberg Relief Fund has already committed $5 million match funding for the Wildlife Ranger Challenge as its founding donor. The Scheinberg Relief Fund was established in March 2020 by businessman and philanthropist, Mark Scheinberg, together with his family, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The photographs include beautiful portraits of rangers by photojournalist Brent Stirton; a striking image of a ranger with a rhino under his care at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in Kenya by Ami Vitale; elephant bulls taking a drink of water from the Zibadianja Lake in Botswana by Beverly Joubert; a ring seal peering out for polar bears below the surface by Paul Nicklen; the foggy forest canopy of Great Bear Rainforest in British Columbia, Canada by Cristina Mittermeier; a lion at the Plzen Zoo in the branded style of National Geographic’s Photo Ark by Joel Sartore; and a limited edition, previously unreleased photo of an elephant in Amboseli National Park, Kenya, by renowned fine art photographer David Yarrow.

The other world-leading photographers participating include: Art Wolfe, Christopher Johns, Daisy Gilardini, Dale Rio, Greg du Toit, James Lewin, Jen Guyton, Martin Buzora, Peter Chadwick, Sandesh Kadur, Robin Moore, Shannon Wild, Steve Winter, Trevor Frost, and Will Burrard-Lucas.

“We are extremely grateful to this group of world-leading wildlife photographers that have donated their prints to keeping rangers employed and nature secure,” said Jonathan Baillie, president of NATURAL STATE. “We also want to thank the Scheinberg Relief Fund for matching all photo sales up to half-a-million dollars, so that every purchase has twice as much impact in the field.”

In October, the Wildlife Ranger Challenge organized a run that engaged more than 2,000 rangers from 20 countries in Africa who ran a race to raise funds for rangers in the greatest need. Two thousand supporters from 80 countries throughout the world joined them. The photo sale will build on this support.

“What we all need right now is hope and inspiration,” said Charlie Mayhew, CEO of Tusk. “Hope that we can still make a difference and inspiration for why we should. These incredible images of nature and the people who protect it make us pause to reflect on the importance of defending wildlife for everyone. By purchasing a beautiful piece of art, you are directly contributing to rangers’ conservation action on the ground right across Africa.”

Art for Wildlife Rangers photos for sale can be found on Artsy.net, a platform for the world’s leading galleries, museum collections, foundations, artist estates, art fairs, and benefit auctions, all in one place. Individuals who would prefer to make a direct donation to the Wildlife Ranger Challenge can do so at https://wildliferangerchallenge.org/artdonate/.

Additional Quotes

Nyaradzo Hoto, ranger with the Akashinga unit from Zimbabwe’s Phundundu Wildlife Area

“I would like to say to people around the world, the more they support rangers, the more they are supporting wildlife, because we as rangers, if we are placed on the frontline, we are the ones who have put their first priority as protecting nature.”

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Photo: Martin Buzora’s “The Surrogate Mother,” included in the ‘Art for Wildlife Rangers’ photo sale, shows Elias Mugambi, a ranger at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in northern Kenya. Mugambi often spends weeks away from his family caring for orphaned black rhinos like Kitui, pictured here. (Photo by Martin Buzora)

Download examples of photos for sale

Global Wildlife Conservation

GWC conserves the diversity of life on Earth by safeguarding wildlands, protecting wildlife and supporting guardians. We maximize our impact through scientific research, biodiversity exploration, habitat conservation, protected area management, wildlife crime prevention, endangered species recovery, and conservation leadership cultivation. Learn more at https://globalwildlife.org

NATURAL STATE

NATURAL STATE is dedicated to driving conservation and restoration to scale. With seventy-five percent of the world's natural ecosystems degraded, reinstating natural habitats is essential for stabilizing the world’s climate, securing biodiversity and providing essential life-sustaining natural resources for the world's population. NATURAL STATE aims to catalyze these large-scale restoration needs by developing large-scale infrastructure, innovative technology for impact monitoring and the financial mechanisms. Learn more at www.naturalstate.org.

Tusk Trust

Tusk’s mission is to amplify the impact of progressive conservation initiatives across Africa. The charity has earned a reputation for providing a highly efficient solution for funding wildlife conservation programs. Tusk partners with the most effective local organizations, investing in their in-depth knowledge and expertise. By supporting and nurturing their conservation programs, it helps accelerate growth from an innovative idea to a scalable solution.  For more than 30 years, Tusk has helped pioneer an impressive range of successful conservation initiatives across more than 20 countries, increasing vital protection for over 70 million hectares of land and more than 40 different threatened species. But the threat to Africa’s unique natural heritage remains real and more urgent than ever. Learn more at www.tusk.org.

Scheinberg Relief Fund

The Scheinberg Relief Fund was established by businessman and philanthropist, Mark Scheinberg, together with his family, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Its mission is to provide strategic, high impact relief for individuals and communities. As well as reducing the short-term impact of the virus, the Fund also seeks to build a legacy in the communities and initiatives that it gives to, by providing funding for projects that secure a longer-term impact. More information available at www.scheinbergfund.org

Contact

Lindsay Renick Mayer

Global Wildlife Conservation

lrenickmayer@globalwildlife.org

512-686-6225

Devin Murphy

Global Wildlife Conservation

dmurphy@globalwildlife.org

512-686-6188

 

 

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