Good, Bad and Ugly

The good.

  • Rory Young will be coming to the US in September to speak before a crowd of 10,000 in Boston. We are also trying to arrange a TEDxBoston talk for him when he is here.  The speaking engagement was arranged by board member Joe Chernov. I plan to be there to meet Joe, Rory and hopefully Marjet Young.
  • Rory and the rangers he trains are havingmalawi3ops unprecedented success in the bush. Rory has dialed in the time needed to do a proper training session. To do it right we need two weeks of instruction/planning and two weeks of operations with Rory’s guidance. So a typical training session now lasts 30 days and costs around $18,000.
  • Kristen Kurczak Nightingale is an invaluable new addition to Chengeta Wildlife’s board of directors. She is an amazing person and exactly who we need on our team! She first contacted me through our website and said our approach to ending poaching is what has been missing and badly needed. She is extremely knowledgeable about nonprofits and especially nonprofits in Africa. She has traveled extensively throughout Africa and lived there for 10 years.  Kristen has been very generous with her time and expertise. She knows how to gain access to larger foundations and other possible income streams.
  • We are attracting some immensely talented board members. I will do a full post about them soon. Kyle Murao is our new treasurer.
  • Helen Rennie with ALERT has been submitting multiple grant requests for anti-poaching funding. Those requests take a lot of effort and organization. She does them with good cheer and is always supportive of my paltry efforts.
  • Jamie Joseph is an environmentalist and a writer for Africa Geographic,Huffington Post, Virgin Unite and other media sites including her This week she will begin covering Rory’s reports from our training camps. We will be gaining a great deal of publicity for our work through Jamie’s coverage.
  • Some other amazing things are in the works, but I can’t announce those just yet so stay tuned for more.


The bad.

  • Our bank account is empty. I messed up. I let too much time pass between our first two crowdfunding campaigns. In our first year we had two major campaigns, but I have learned we should probably have three per year.
  • We were hoping the US Fish and Wildlife Service would help out with some grant funding, but I received an email from them last Thursday denying our request.
  • I owe Rory $2,300 in back pay for the training session that ended in March. When the current session is over on May 6th I will owe him an additional $6,000. Rory insists that any funding shortfall comes out of his trainer fees. The rangers must have supplies, vehicles and fuel. He won’t cut back on those.


The Ugly.

  • Our lack of funds couldn’t have come at a worse time. The Youngs are moving to the Netherlands in May. Rory’s sweet wife Marjet is under a great deal of stress. While Rory is away she is getting everything ready for the move overseas, packing up, deciding what stays or goes, trying to sell their vehicle and furniture, searching for good homes for their pets in Zimbabwe and finding a new place for the family to call home.
  • Last week both of their kids were hospitalized with severe gastrointestinal distress. They were given meds and IV fluids overnight. They are back home now and doing fine.
  • Rory’s father is hospitalized with a terminal illness and has been given only weeks to live.
  • Rory has received serious threats and harassment because of our successful anti-poaching work. More on this later. (I so wish his wife and kids could get on a plane and leave tomorrow.)

I promise we are doing all we can to line up funding from larger organizations so we don’t have to lean on you guys so much in the future. That said, if you have any amount that you could donate, I would be forever grateful.

We have set up an easy new way to donate through our partners at ALERT.
Supporters in the UK can text APTR05 to 70070 to give £5
or text APTR10 to 70070 to give £10.
(APTR stands for Anti-Poaching TRaining.)

US donors can text any donation amount to (415) 319-6494. The first time you will have to fill in the bare minimum of information. In the future you can donate by simply texting the amount you would like to give to the number above.

Or donate any amount at