Mans very existence began in Africa. He evolved in co-existence with the continents teaming wildlife and grew his traditions and spirituality by watching the rising and setting of the sun and marveling over the night’s star studded skies. While doing this, he must have also mused at his purpose on this planet and on what lies beyond. He lived for a time in harmony with creation.
Today, the crush of so-called developmental progress has destroyed so much of the human connectedness of our ancient rhythms with the wild places and its life forms. Now, we seem to be on a last destructive path of decay and disintegration, determined to annihilate Africa’s iconic wildlife. Without urgently altering our current course, our very own essence of existence will be grievously impaired.
Man has an ethical and moral obligation to question our current value systems where we place the significance of ivory and rhino horn as things of possession and greedy monetary wealth rather than recognising them as coming from living sentient beings that share this earth with us.
We have to redeem the humanity in us and justify our existence through becoming passionate caretakers of all of the earth. If we fail to heed this call, we will indeed be the generation that is judged negatively for allowing Africa’s iconic wildlife to be wiped out.
I certainly believe in Africa, its peoples and its wild places that still team with life and I am certainly not going to just close my eyes and look the other way to the devastation that is happening. Each of us has a purpose on this earth and through my personal conservation efforts and my conservation photography, I hope to be lighting just one candle that others will see to follow the path towards positive change – Are you prepared to take my single glimmer of light to further bring about a revolution of change against the current negative cycle?
This conservation photography project is carried out in partnership with the Game Rangers Association of Africa (GRAA) that provides support, networks and representation for game rangers across Africa. This conservation photography project will use rangers as the “lead characters” to highlight the issues faced by conservationists and showcase opportunities for improved support of rangers in the future. Positive and targeted messages will be communicated that emphasise the critical role that rangers play in African conservation in ensuring that the continent’s natural heritage is preserved for the benefit of future generations. Support Africa’s Rangers by supporting the GRAA.
Peter Chadwick is a Fellow of the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) whose mission is to further environmental and cultural conservation through photography. The iLCP’s goal is to use the art of high-quality photography to encourage people to take action in support of tangible and meaningful conservation measures.