Home of some of the most famous animals, Hub of many conservation projects, funded by tourism, educating the masses.
Being able to travel and learn about animals in their natural habitat fuels my passion for conservation and education.
However, on this recent trip I had a reality check! Not everyone you meet feels the same way you do… corruption is high and people are lead purely by money.
Long story short, yes Masai Mara is amazing and being able to see these animals makes me even more determined to do what I can to make sure they stay around for years to come! But whilst out there I learnt that so many tourists are conned! The money they think they’re giving to the wildlife trust is ending up in people’s pockets. How do I know? Well we spent 4 days battling with various people who tried getting us to pay our park fees in cash. Angry conversations were had, tears were shed, frustration sky high, but we managed to stick with it and didn’t cave despite all their attempts! We took the issue to the main officials and made sure they were aware of what was happening on ground level.
I was heartbroken to see this and I know many tourists must fall for it and not realise that their money isn’t going where they thought it would be.
So why am I telling you all of this? Because we all need to be aware, we need to stand up for what we believe in and make sure we know who we’re supporting. This experience has taught me to be more prepared…to research and plan even more than you think you need to… and to make sure this doesn’t happen to anyone else.
These animals need us now more than ever!
All photos are taken by myself. Please ask me if you want any before taking them.
Love Avni x