Lion on the savanna for the Expedia Wildlife Education Portal

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African Wildlife Foundation

Headquartered in Kenya, the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) is the leading conservation organization focused solely on the continent of Africa. AWF works to stop the killing of, trafficking of, and demand for wildlife and wildlife products. AWF focuses on protecting wildlife and their habitat, advocating at the highest levels of government in Africa, promoting human development to meet basic needs, and leveraging conservation enterprises to promote economic growth that is not at the expense of Africa’s natural heritage. AWF programs are designed with African communities and policy leaders, engaging African people throughout all levels of planning and implementationranging from AWF’s role as the African Union’s official conservation partner to AWF’s community conservation programs that impact individual households.

 

Wildlife Conservation & Tourism

One of the greatest threats to Africa’s wildlife comes from outside of the continent. Rising influence in Asia and elsewhere has created a booming black market for elephant ivory and rhino horn, which has led to a poaching crisis on the African continent. As a result, wildlife trophies are often sold in gift shops for tourists around the world.

AWF is working with governments and other NGOs to shut down this illicit trade. Specifically, AWF is helping to increase global awareness of the crisis to reduce demand while engaging policymakers to ensure broad support in combating this serious issue. AWF is also on the ground strengthening law enforcement efforts through its Canines for Conservation Program by deploying sniffer dog teams at trafficking chokepoints—airports, seaports, and border crossings—to confiscate wildlife contraband before they leave African countries. In addition, AWF is helping tourists experience the beauty of Africa’s wildlife while supporting the economy by developing successful ecotourism lodges throughout Africa. These enterprises bring revenue to local communities, incentivize communities to protect area wildlife, and raise support for conservation activities. Lastly, AWF has been working with partners to identify tourism and co-management opportunities in protected areas, which will support the welfare of wildlife while promoting the appreciation of a country’s natural resources.

Expedia Joins Forces to Combat Wildlife Trafficking

African wildlife products travel along an elaborate trade chain that spans countries, oceans, and continents, and comprises a network of poachers, traffickers, fixers, kingpins, and consumers. Tackling the multibillion-dollar illegal wildlife trade requires a movement to end the demand for wildlife contraband. In partnership with Expedia, AWF is able to amplify its public awareness efforts and discourage consumers from feeding the demand for wildlife and wildlife products. By educating travelers globally, together AWF and Expedia can help to ensure wildlife thrive in their natural habitats and are not wounded or killed to manufacture trinkets.

 

Resources

As you embark on your travels, at home and abroad, pledge to be an advocate for Africa’s wildlife and to never buy ivory products: www.awf.org/elephant-pledge.

 

*The views and expressed opinions on this page are those of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA), and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Expedia, Inc. Any cited research is sourced by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) and has not been verified or independently evaluated by Expedia, Inc.

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