Ranger Training and Reserve Support
Field rangers and anti-poaching teams are the first line of defence in the rhino poaching war. They need ongoing support to maintain morale and improve their skills & abilities in the face of heavily armed poaching gangs.
Skills training & in-field mentorship. Over 100 rangers benefit annually from accredited ‘Counter Insurgency Tracker Training’ & ‘Section 49-Use of Force’ training, funded by Project Rhino in partnership with the Game Rangers Association of Africa and SA Wildlife College. In coming months we aim to intensify this support.
The current training programme includes:
- 'Use of force': facilitated by the experienced Ed Ostrosky (Game Rangers Association of Africa) practically explains Section 41 of the SA Criminal Procedures Act. Includes combat/arrest techniques, drills on armed engagements and the legal processes around arrest and bail conditions.
- 'Counter Insurgency Tracking Training (CITT)': 8-day in-field training provided by SA Wildlife Collage.
Extended Ranger Support: At the request of the reserve managers and where funding support is available, the following Ranger Support initiatives is implemented in partnership with the Game Rangers Association of Africa and experienced conservation trainers.
- 'Counter Poaching Awareness Training': for game reserve staff being puled into rhino security needs: eg: fence patrols, OP vigils and Guard Tower stints, how to respond to fence incursions and armed poaching gangs.
- 'Field Ranger Mentorship': in-field ranger mentorship and assessment for game reserves.
- 'Protected Area Integrity Management Effectiveness Assessments (PAIME)'.
- 'Ranger well-being Psycho-social support': to rangers suffering from stress and PTSD.
Equipment & resources for private, community-owned and state game reserves, who are members of the Zululand & Midlands Wildlife Security networks, established by Project Rhino to improve reserve-level communications and integrated responses to rhino poaching threats.