Wednesday, 11 June, 2014 12:16

Giving back

“From what we get, we can make a living; what we give, however, makes a life.” ~ Arthur Ashe

There are very few people that can say they love small town living. I, however, was fortunate enough to live in a little town called Hoedspruit. We used to joke and say that if you dared to blink while driving through, you’d completely miss it.

Our back yard was a few hundred metres from the Kruger National Park and hearing the lions roar at night became somewhat of a lullaby for us. Other than fighting your way past venomous snakes, we were completely spoilt with the most incredible wildlife and scenery, something I can only look back on and appreciate now that I live in Johannesburg.
Going back to the park feels like home and every time I am there I am just in awe of nature and how very blessed we are to live in such a magnificent country.

As we know, our animals are not without danger. 1464126_733737486678982_7086157528467550941_n

Poachers lurk in every dark corner, their lust for money outweighing their compassion, even to the little miracles still depending on the protection and guidance of their mothers.
This brings me to Gertjie. Orphaned at such a young age but sporting a fighting spirit. You cannot help but fall in love with him. He has captured the hearts and minds of people worldwide.

His loss has not been in vein.

The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre and all the folks working there really are doing beyond phenomenal things. Their patience and love spills over in the way the animals respond to them. Their work cannot be measured as it’s just priceless.

There are many like Gertjie that need to be nurtured to survive, and the only way to do that is by the support of the public.  There are less than 200 Wild Dog and Cheetahs in the Kruger National Park – for those that know the span of the Kruger, you will understand how devastatingly few that is.
Ever wanted to do something but just didn’t know what or how to be a part of the bigger picture? Well here is your chance!

cheetahTo adopt and rename a cheetah, sponsor a wild dog or donate to a list of endangered species, just go to the website.

All I know is that I wish I could be on the ground doing the kind of work that these guys are. The bond between human and animale is so incredibly special. For now, all I can do is open my heart by opening my wallet :)
You can follow Gertjie’s day to day experiences on their Facebook Page and HESC updates on Twitter @Cheetah_Centre


Posted On
Jun 11, 2014
Posted By
Kate Nelson

What a beautifully written piece! Many thanks Liesl, I hope you inspire many donations to this wonderful cause.

Posted On
Jun 11, 2014
Posted By

Thank you Kate. I hope so too :)

Posted On
Jun 11, 2014
Posted By

As usual Li. Inspiring as always. Never thinking of what you are going through but others and how to help….

Posted On
Jun 12, 2014
Posted By
Sue Brown

What a lovely written piece – I was lost in the words and transported to Hoedspruit and HESC where I have spent much time this year. Our team were involved in the treatment of the two poached Rhino featured on Carte Blanche this week. We applaud the whole team at HESC for their amazing work and raising awareness. Education is the key and the only way forward in the Rhino war.

Thank you.
Rhino Saving the Survivors Volunteer Team

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