Objective: To increase conservation awareness and mobilize the youth generation to speak out against the escalating poaching of rhino & other endangered species and global wildlife crime.
World Youth Rhino Summits – Started in 2014 with the inaugural World Youth Rhino Summit that brought youth delegates from 20 nations (including Vietnam) to the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, these Youth Summits increase conservation awareness and mobilize youth leaders to speak out against the escalating poaching of rhino and global wildlife crime. Youth delegates debate critical issues and interact with conservation leaders, building a worldwide call to action. Uniting key stakeholders at an international level, the next World Youth Rhino Summit is planned for April 2018. More information available on the Youth Summit Page.
World Youth Wildlife Declaration –Signed by thousands of youth following its unveiling at the 2014 World Youth Rhino Summit, the World Youth Wildlife Declaration has been endorsed by luminaries that include Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the late Dr Ian Player and Dr Jane Goodall. Government and conservation leaders worldwide and hundreds of ordinary citizens have also added their heartfelt messages of support calling for greater global commitment to end rhino poaching and international wildlife crime.
In October 2015, a delegation of South African Rhino Youth Ambassadors (participants from the 2014 & 2015 World Youth Rhino Summits) presented the World Youth Wildlife Declaration to Vietnamese government officials and community leaders as part of Operation Game Change in Hanoi, Vietnam. Vietnamese youth leaders and school pupils also signed the Declaration, pledging their support to end the purchase and consumption of rhino horn in their country.
#RhinoShoutOutChallenge and other online youth-driven campaigns. Online social movements and forums – driven by Youth Rhino Ambassadors themselves – continually educate and sustain the interest and commitment of young people who have participated in one or more of our Youth Rhino Ambassador initiatives.
#LetOurVoicesBeHeard – support a core group of highly committed individual Youth Rhino Ambassadors and schools throughout South Africa who have adopted the plight of the rhino and wildlife crime, by giving presentations to school assemblies, arranging conservation field trips and informative guest speaking events, assisting with their rhino fundraising campaigns, mentoring individual pupils and providing educational information and resources on all forms of wildlife crime.
In 2015 a delegation from this programme participated in the USA/Vietnam Governments’ Operation Game Change demand reduction campaign in Hanoi, Vietnam and presented the World Youth Wildlife Declaration to Vietnamese government officials and youth leaders.