First of all, this project is so very close to my heart. Anyone that knows me knows the special love and admiration I have for the majestic and wise gentle giants that I lovingly refer to as 'elees' :) The Elephant project in Surin, Thailand is a project where 20 chosen volunteers, including myself, live and work amongst the locals of a working elephant village that supports around 34 elephants.
About 100 years ago elephants were used as farming equipment and for hauling massive trees in the large logging industry so the need for such sturdy and robust workers was high; then about 40 years ago the Thailand government made logging illegal which had a negative cascade effect on the livelihood and well-being of these big friends. So much so, that in order to find money to pay for the HUGE amounts of food these guys eat (about 150KGs a day....that's a lot of Big Macs) the Mahoots (elephant handlers) had to take their beloved animals onto the busy streets of major cities like Bangkok and Phnom Penh so that they could beg for money from photos with tourists where they are abused or be killed.
So we will work with the local community to support the Mahoots in keeping the elephants in the village, in as much of a natural environment as possible. By joining this project, we will keep the elephants fed, safe, and with the people they love. The activities we undertake will range from planting sugar-cane to feed the elephants, aiding in the hygiene and medical care of the elephants, and general micro development projects within the elephant and Mahoot community. A portion of the proceeds also goes to funding sustainable water sources, food, and education for the Mahoots and the entire elephant village.
Please help us help them! We are only $3000 away from providing the in person love and support that these sacred and intelligent animals so desperately need and deserve. The value they give to the world is truly unique and irreplaceable.
Much love and gratitude <3