World Ranger Day: Men and women who braved Covid to keep poachers at bay

World Ranger Day: Men and women who braved Covid to keep poachers at bay


One year ago, members of IFAW’s Team Lioness – eight remarkable women who work as Community Wildlife Rangers in the Olgulului-Ololarashi Group Ranch in Kenya’s Amboseli ecosystem – were returning home after four months of Covid-19 quarantine kept them at their posts. The demands of protecting wildlife during a global pandemic, kept mother from children, wives from partners, and daughters from families.

Timed to the anniversary of their homecoming and World Ranger Day 2021, IFAW acknowledges and celebrates the physical strength, mental fortitude and emotional resilience necessary to dedicate your life to animals.

Working in concert with acclaimed Hollywood writer, producer and director, Ned Benson, the documentary short “Team Lioness” takes a personal and poignant look at the strength demanded from eight young women during the height of Covid-19, and the gender barriers they have broken within their communities.

“It’s been an honour and a privilege to attempt to represent the amazing work that Team Lioness and IFAW has done under the circumstances of the past year. It is more than inspiring to see how they have contributed to and altered the story of conservation when it was needed most,” said Benson.

“As we celebrate and honour wildlife rangers, we applaud their continued resilience and commitment to protecting wildlife. More so, this last year when local communities that live with wildlife have experienced reduced incomes due to declined tourism revenues because of Covid-19. At the expense of spending time with family and taking time off work, the rangers have increased the areas they patrol to ensure wildlife remain safe. IFAW applauds and is proud of all wildlife rangers, for their gallant work, even in the face of adversity. Now more than ever, these rangers require support and we are determined to do all what it takes to continue partnering and supporting them to keep people and wildlife safe in the place we call home,” said James Isiche, Regional Director, IFAW East Africa.

Further, IFAW will ignite a global conversation across social media platforms to recognize the fearlessness of our wildlife rangers and showcase support for their dedication. IFAW’s Team Lioness will kick off the campaign and pose the question: What are you #RangerStrongFor? Tune in to IFAW’s TikTok and Instagram channels to answer the call, and use the #RangerStrongFor hashtag to join the movement.

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