The Tusk Conservation Awards, in partnership with Investec Asset Management, celebrate the unsung heroes working day and night to preserve Africa’s wildlife. In his speech, Prince William remarked that the finalists’ “bravery, single-minded determination, and commitment to African conservation is deeply deeply humbling”. He also talked of his own first-hand experiences of the important work that people like the finalists do, day-in-day-out to protect Africa’s wildlife, and touched upon subjects such as climate change, human population growth, the exploitation of natural resources, and habitat loss, which all pose major threats to the precious balance of the natural world.
Africa is still on the frontline of conservation and many brave men and women have lost their lives fighting to safeguard the natural world. Upon being presented with the Tusk Wildlife Ranger Award Zambia’s Benson Kanyembo said: “This award is a big morale booster not only to myself, but to all rangers who risk, and lose their lives in the line of duty. I will continue to fight even harder to protect Africa’s remaining wildlife until my dying day.”
The Tusk Award for Conservation in Africa, sponsored by Land Rover, recognised Senegal’s Tomas Diagne as an emerging leader for his ground-breaking work on the protection of tortoise and the freshwater and sea turtles of West Africa. A perfect example of an emerging African conservation leader, Tomas has worked with local communities to establish two successful centres in Senegal for the protection and breeding programmes for threatened species. Receiving the Award he said: “The challenges affecting larger wildlife across Africa are the exact challenges affecting turtles and tortoises. As such we must all work together to find solutions to save Africa’s wildlife and natural places.”
The Prince William Award for Conservation in Africa honours those whose lives have been devoted to preserving the natural world, and the Royal Patron was proud to recognise Dr Carlos Pereira for the extraordinary achievements of a lifetime dedicated to the survival of Mozambique’s wildlife, including through his leading role in the protection of Gorongosa National Park and Niassa National Reserve. Accepting his award from HRH The Duke of Cambridge, Carlos said “All of us, have a responsibility to spread knowledge, awareness and education about nature and how dependent we are on it. We must challenge any myths and cultural beliefs that endanger wildlife, and we must confront the darkness of organised crime.”
The ceremony was once again hosted by Tusk Ambassador Kate Silverton are and were made possible through the generous support of Investec Asset Management, and the co-sponsors Land Rover, ISPS Handa, The Mantis Group, Moët & Chandon and Fortemus & Maia Films. The event and the work of the finalists was also kindly supported by Stuart and Teresa Graham, Paul Tudor Jones, EJF Philanthropies and John Smith.
To discover more about the extraordinary winners of this year’s Awards and their work, or to nominate your conservation hero for an Award in 2020, please visit www.tuskawards.com
Watch the highlights of the Tusk Conservationation Awards 2019