Here is how the project went:
Love, Life and Elephants was indeed loved! We had a much larger turnout than expected. The families were fully engaged and interested.
Through this project I/we learned:
Ideas we think might not be well-received are sometimes the most popular! The presentation from Sheldrick's Wildlife Trust was immensely successful! So many hands were raised to ask questions and participate! The documentary, Born to be Wild, was also enjoyed and the children particularly loved coloring and displaying their own orphaned elephant pictures.
What I/we might change:
I would advertise these events more. I would potentially open it up to be virtual and in person, as we welcome even more people when we make the events open to those out of our local area.
My/our favorite part of this project was:
My favorite moment was when a small six year old girl came up to quietly ask me about why the elephants were orphaned. She knew it was because poachers may have hurt or poisoned the mother elephant. This young, sweet child knew more about the state of poaching and harm to our wildlife than many adults in attendance.
Some tips, tricks or fun facts about the project:
Sheldrick's Wildlife Trust offers FREE educational resources, including a presentation with wonderful notes for you to present yourself, coloring sheets, word search and crossword puzzle sheets, as well as templates to write your own letters to local governments asking for action to protect elephants. The documentary Born to Be Wild is a child-friendly movie featuring Sheldricks as well as Orangutan Foundation International's Birute Galdikas and the orangutan orphanage there.