When I suggested we start unique rhino fund under the MyPlanet banner in May 2011, I really believed that if we could get lots people to swipe their cards for our rhino, those seemingly insignificant amounts would accumulate and save many rhino. This is indeed what has come to pass — in July the fund gave over R1 million away to best practices in rhino conservation!

So how do we decide where the funds should go? Firstly, we established a credible panel of experts. The panel is made up of Yolan Friedman, CEO of the Endangered Wildlife Trust; Pelham Jones, CEO of the Private Rhino Owners Association; Dr Mike Knight of the Rhino Specialist Group; David Newton of TRAFFIC; Pieter Twine from Woolworths and MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet, and myself. Secondly, interested and affected organisations involved with rhino conservation apply to the panel. The panel then evaluate applications according to a set of criteria and decisions are made as to who receives funding.

Funds dispersed during July went to Addo National Park for camera traps; Care for Wild Africa for the protection of orphaned calves; SA Wildlife College for ranger training; SAVE Valley Conservancy to help with their fantastic work in the protection of critically endangered black rhino; Quemic for security in private reserves and Limpopo Rhino Security.

In my next few blogs I will be focusing on a few of the organisations above and the incredible work they do to protect our rhinos.

Please remember that every time you shop and swipe your card, you are making a positive contribution to saving this iconic species. Please encourage your friends to get a MySchool card in and make the MyPlanet Rhino Fund their beneficiary.

Together, we will save our rhinos from the horrors of poaching.

#DOT…Do One Thing for our rhinos!

A R1 million raised throught the MyPlanet Rhino Fund will help worthy conservation initiatives and organisations.