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R1.7m to fight rhino poaching in KNP

02 November 2011, 15:23

On November 3 2011 in Phalaborwa, equipment to the value of R1.75m will be handed over to the various field rangers operating in the Kruger National Park. The funding for the equipment forms part of the UNITE against Poaching initiative which Unitrans VW and Audi have embarked on to support counter poaching in SANParks.

The basic kit will equip the rangers to operate in the bush for an extended period without having to return to their base camps. The ability to remain in the bush overnight for longer periods will greatly enhance their ability to track would be poachers.

The equipment comprising some basic essentials including water bottles, tents, ground sheets, camping mattresses, rucksacks, field cooking sets, head lamps, rain suits and first aid kits as well as some camouflage equipment. One assumes that basic field equipment is a given, but to equip the approximately 400 field rangers in the anti-poaching units across the park with the basics is an extremely costly exercise.

The Honorary Rangers have been pivotal in the efficient and effective implementation and acquisition of the basic equipment and the distribution to the Section rangers for use by their various field teams. The funding for the equipment, sponsored by Unitrans VW and Audi forms part of their UNITE against Poaching trust. For every vehicle sold (both new and pre-owned) they pledge R 500 to the trust.

This is a company donation and does not disadvantage the customer’s pricing at all. Unitrans VW and Audi aim to raise R 5m towards the trust in the first year. Members of the public can support the cause by ensuring that the next VW or Audi they purchase is from a participating dealership. The more vehicles purchased from the participating dealers the more funds are pledged to the Unite against Poaching trust.

We will be there to photograph this handover and will be sharing some of these pictures with you...Watch this space!!!

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