05 Sep Making Friends at the Elephant Valley Project
Written by Ana Sani, 2014 Southeast Asia: Animal Conservation.
It is currently 9:15 pm, the night before our Independent Travel Time. We are all very excited to go off to Siem Reap, the beach, and Vietnam, just to name a few of the destinations decided by various group members. Our latest volunteer project was based around an elephant sanctuary called the Elephant Valley Project (EVP).
EVP is a non-profit organization that started about 10 years ago. There are currently nine elephants living in the sanctuary’s forest space. Some are living there permanently while others are on loan from their owners or taking a well-deserved vacation.
The organization works with the local Bunong communities to promote the welfare of the elephants that are living in the sanctuary as well as the endangered wild population that remains in Cambodia. The team got to spend the week learning the stories of the elephants living at the sanctuary while feeding, washing, and just observing them. When we weren’t with the elephants, the team did some intense gardening to help maintain the grounds in the sanctuary and cultivate food sources for the elephants!
“I learned to recognize the dangers Asian elephants in Cambodia face and the proactive measures needed to solve the problem.” – Ana
“I enjoyed learning the back stories behind the elephants, it made their struggle seem so real.” – Angela
“Elephants are so gentle and fun – It was great to see them happy in their natural habitat.” – Jess
2014 Southeast Asia: Animal Conservation