This May 2nd we are asking for your help in taking care of Rana, Maia, and Guida. GSE is participating in The Big Payback, a 24-hour online fundraiser. This year we will be raising money to purchase much-needed fire prevention equipment that will help protect the girls and their home before the arrival of the dry season.
This land is perfect, but if there is one downfall, it’s the possibility of fire. In 2017 an illegal fire set several properties away broached sanctuary grounds. Before that, it had been 12 years since this area saw a fire. We learned a lot during those couple of months: the fires here burn low and slow (thankfully), all of the dense areas of palms are great for stopping the spread of flames, and fire breaks work phenomenally here. Although Maia and Guida were never at risk and remained calm and rumbly through it all, there’s nothing worse than worrying about your ability to protect such extraordinary beings.
Ground maintenance and prevention are critical to the elephants’ safety; for this, we need some big equipment for their big home. The first purchase will be a used tractor. It will be necessary to pull the other equipment included in the fundraiser, along with using it to widen the roads. The second purchase is a 1,500-gallon water tank with a pump. The tank will need to be towed by the tractor but will be able to access places that a firetruck can’t get anywhere near. Outside of fires, it can be used for many things including replenishing the ponds during the dry season. Our final purchase is a new bush hog- essentially a giant lawnmower blade that gets pulled behind the tractor. Overgrown pastures act as fuel for a fire, and this will allow us to keep peripheral meadows short, trim any overgrowth along fire breaks and maintain healthy habitat pastures. All three of these tools together can provide the elephants with a safe, happy and relaxed dry season.
As a bonus purchase, if the above goal is reached, we would like to purchase an auger for the backhoe. The elephant sanctuary is made up of miles of fencing; it is what allows the elephants the freedom to exist without human interference throughout their day. To build more fencing, we have to dig hundreds of holes (thousands eventually), and this fantastic tool will get it done in half the time and save money on wasted concrete.
The Big Payback has been a phenomenal fundraiser for the elephants. Last year, our donors won them over $10,000 in bonuses on top of all of the generous donating and sharing that went on throughout the day. For a small organization like us, the impact is enormous. Please join us in supporting Maia, Guida, and Rana this year by helping to ensure their home remains safe.
More details will follow. Please save the date and share with those who care. Thank you. ❤️