Adopt an Orphan - The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust

PROJECT 48 is my personal initiative to make DU a "Force for Good" in the world around me and I want YOU to be part of that effort. 

I love America, I fought for it and I want it to remain a beacon of hope, goodness and liberty for others to see and strive for the ideal it represents. 

We are not perfect, but we make progress each day towards a better tomorrow, we endeavor to overcome our shortcomings and we build on the accomplishments of the past.  The 48 Star Flag is a reminder of how much we accomplished and how far we have come since our nation”s flag held 48 Stars.

Anyone that knows me knows I live with passion.  I love adventure, whether on my own or learning about other”s.  I discovered the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust on a "rabbit trail" wikipedia adventure after reading "The Maneaters of Tsavo" (a great true story of adventure in Africa).  Fast forward 100 years after that book was written to see the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust operating in the same area.   For over 45 years they've made a difference in Africa preserving a part of the world which inspires our dreams and feeds our adventures.

I was moved and inspired by their mission, work, generational family committment and the great work they do EVERY DAY for the people and animals in the Nairobi National Park region.  I wanted to support their cause and added them to the Dragoon Unlimited "Give Back" Program.  THEN I discovered a way to make a personal connection with them and the animals they assist by adopting an elephant.  After an extended period of research, I determined I couldn’t pick only one, so I've turned to TEAM DRAGOON to help me make that choice. In doing so I will be able to share the monthly progress and update on "our" orphans.

As one of our Team Members stated, "I want to adopt them ALL!"  I would if I could, but don't let our choice prevent you from selecting another for yourself, your groupd of friends, organization or work group.  It really is a pittance of money that makes a REAL IMPACT on a part of the world that feeds our Spirit of Adventure, awe and wonder.  You can even adopt a hippo or giraffe if you prefer.

Take a look at the six orphan elephants below and PLEASE SHARE this post link with your friends and family. Let's really make an impact with this initiative!  If nothing else, we can all learn how small beginnings can make huge impacts on the world.

Go to the bottom to select the orphan you want Team Dragoon to adopt and make sure to check out the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust at their links below as well.


Esoit's Story:  The phone call we received on the evening of 3rd May 2021 made our hearts sink: A gravely injured female elephant had been sighted on the Chyulu Hills. Her right hind leg was shattered, likely as a result of falling in the rocky terrain, leaving her unable to walk. She had resorted to shuffling along in a seated position, struggling with every little movement. To further compound an already tragic situation, the female in question was the mother of two calves. One was a young, milk-dependent baby, the other was much older, around seven years of age.   



Mwinzi's Story:  Winzi is our drought miracle. Born in the shadow of Africa’s largest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro, he is a behemoth himself — a truly larger-than-life character in a tiny body. 

Mwinzi’s story began on 19th September 2022, at a dire time for Amboseli. Months of drought had taken their toll on the ecosystem, evaporating food sources and turning the landscape into a veritable dust bowl. Set against this challenging backdrop, little Mwinzi nearly lost his life just as it was beginning.

Craig Millar of Big Life reported an abandoned infant elephant in Kimana. Weakened by the drought, he had gotten stuck in mud and couldn’t extract himself. Members of the local Maasai community had managed to free him, averting one potential death trap. However, things were still looking bleak for the calf. He was in very precarious condition and promptly collapsed upon reaching solid ground.




Kapei's Story:  Umani is not typically a destination for new rescues, but these are extraordinary times. Thus, our little Umani herd just got a bit bigger with the arrival of a special, surprise addition. His name is Kapei, after the area where he was rescued.

Kapei’s story began in Rombo, near the south western boundary of Tsavo West National Park. KWS and Big Life raised the alarm of a possible orphaned elephant. He was in poor condition and it was reported he had been alone for a number of days . We will never know how he came to be on his own, but as the drought reaches its peak, we are experiencing more and more drought related fatalities, mostly the young and the old. It is also possible, however, that he lost his mother due to human-wildlife conflict.




Nyambeni's Story:  Nyambeni is alive today because an ordinary man stepped up and went to extraordinary lengths to save her life. 

Her story began in Mula, a small village in the heart of the Meru landscape. On the morning of 9th May 2022, a suspicious noise captured a farmer’s attention. He followed the sound to the bank of a shallow, muddy ditch — where he was surprised to find a tiny elephant calf crying out to him! She must have fallen in the night before, as her herd migrated from the Shaba grasslands to the Nyambene Hills. Wary of human presence, elephants traverse farmlands under cover of darkness and remain constantly on the move. Fearful of what might happen if they stayed in the area for too long, the calf’s family was forced to leave their little one behind.




Muridjo's Story:  A passing glance could have easily missed the elephant hiding in the bushes on Ol Malo. She was small and determined to remain camouflaged. And yet she had been there for several days, trying to fend for herself but desperately vulnerable.

This was the peak of the 2022 drought, which held much of Kenya in its grips. Laikipia was hit particularly hard, creating a crisis situation for its resident elephant population. We cannot be certain how this calf came to be orphaned, but the drought certainly played a role.

Once it became clear that the calf was indeed an orphan, KWS green lit a rescue. On the morning of 15th September, a team of Keepers flew up to Laikipia in a Cessna Caravan. Meanwhile, Ol Malo handled logistics on the ground, capturing the calf and driving her to the airstrip. The operation was carefully choreographed, so the plane landed just as its precious cargo arrived.




Ahmed's Story:  This brave little girl is an orphan in the most tragic sense. She was found standing guard over her mother’s body, helpless yet fiercely protective. At the tender age of 2 and a half years, she was old enough to be sentient about the situation, but far too young to survive on her own in a drought year.

Her story began on the afternoon of 26th September 2022, when our SWT/KWS Tsavo Mobile Veterinary Unit was contacted about a dead female elephant in Manyani, Tsavo West National Park. She had left behind an orphaned calf, who was standing vigil by her side.

With heavy hearts, they captured the calf to transport her to the nearby Manyani airstrip, where the rescue plane would meet them.



Select the orphan you want DU to adopt below.  We'll select the two with the most votes.  Also, I hope you'll share the SWT Story with your friends and if so moved consider adopting one yourself or with a group.  What better way to stay connected with the Spirit of Adventure and make a positive impact on the world?

May 1st Update

Voting is CLOSED, but we will provide monthly updates on "Our Orphans" throughout the year. Thank you to all those who particpated!


 Learn more about the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust & the incredible work they have done in Africa for decades to protect some of the most majestic, iconic and threatened animals on the planet.







Drop them a line, Direct Message (DM) or comment at any of the above and tell them Dragoon Unlimited sent you! 

#dragoonunlimited & #project48




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