Please watch the 'Saving Salma' video campaign:
There are only 2400 Sumatran elephants left on Earth.
Salma, a one year old baby elephant, is one of them. She lived with her family in the forest of The Leuser Ecosystem in Aceh, North Sumatra, known as the last place on earth where elephant, rhino, orangutan and tiger coexist.
In June 2019, Salma was found alone at the bottom of an elephant trap by the Conservation Response Unit (CRU) of Forum Konservasi Leuser organisation (FKL), with her front left foot swollen and infected having been caught in a poachers snare.
With few options available to them, the members of the CRU, led by Edi Syah Putra, rescued Salma from the trap, removed the snare and took her back to their headquarters at Saberjadi where they began nursing her back to health. It is their hope that one day, when she is strong enough, and when finance and circumstances allow, Salma can be returned to her family.
The £600 monthly costs of Salma’s care has put an incredible strain on the operational budget of the CRU who are already stretched to capacity as they struggle to operate on just £1500 per month.
The CRU is the last hope for Leuser’s dwindling elephant population; operating as first responders when elephants are in danger, working with local communities to alleviate human/elephant conflict whilst restoring degraded lands through tree planting and restoration.
Geraldine (left) and Jonathan (middle) with the CRU team
The UK registered charity “Wild & Free - Rehabilitation & Release
” visited the CRU team and met Salma at Saberjadi in July 2019 to learn more about their work, the situation on the ground and to identify the best way to help. Having spent several days working alongside the team, the urgency of the financial situation of the CRU became apparent.
Geraldine Morelli, Director of Wild & Free decided to start this campaign to cover the costs of Salma’s care and to support the CRU allowing them to continue their essential work fighting for Sumatra’s last elephants.
The ‘Saving Salma’ campaign was launched on the 22nd November 2019 at a fundraising event in London organised by Geraldine. In addition, Jonathan (also in the campaign video), organised a surprise fundraising for the launch. Together, an amazing £2,027 has been raised, a wonderful testament to how many hearts Salma’s story has touched already.
Please visit Wild&Free's online shop
to see Salma merchandise
Please become one of Salma’s supporters too so we can help to cover the annual costs for her care, rehabilitation and release as well as the fantastic CRU team’s operational budget if possible.
Thank you very much,
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------A bit more background....The Leuser Ecosystem
The Leuser Ecosystem on the island of Sumatra consists of 2.6 million hectares of diverse landscapes, 80% of which is in the province of Aceh. This globally unique ecosystem boasts Sumatra's most significant tropical rainforest remnant and millions of people rely on its environmental services, particularly the water supplies. A major carbon sink, the Leuser ecosystem is also one of the richest representations of the biodiversity of Southeast Asia and the last place on Earth where orangutan, rhino, elephant and tiger still co-exist in the wild.
Despite its special legal status as a National Strategic Area for its Environmental Protection Function, the Leuser Ecosystem is under severe threat from illegal oil palm and other plantations, logging, encroachment, mining and fires - all of which exacerbate the poaching pressure on critically endangered species.Forum Konservasi Leuser (FKL)
Forum Konservasi Leuser is a grass-roots NGO that strives to protect the Leuser Ecosystem and its biodiversity for the sake of Aceh's future, but also our own.
FKL is led by the passionate and dedicated conservationist, Rudi Putra. He works tirelessly to save the Leuser Ecosystem and in 2014, was awarded the Goldman Environmental Award in recognition of his efficient and successful approach. FKL has over 100 people in their team who patrol and work with local communities and law enforcement agencies to stop illegal plantations, logging and wildlife poaching.