I would like to share the formal report that was circulated by the Louis Lemmer, Deputy Chairman SHR NEC, shortly after the event.
You will be aware of the business breakfast hosted by The Success Academy which was held on the 26th of June in Centurion. At this event we had an opportunity to address around 100 business people on the poaching situation and the role we as SHR play in support of the SANParks counter poaching effort.
The event went well and we had a great response from the participants. It is clear that there are still a huge lack of knowledge on the topic and yet at the same time people are concerned and willing to assist.
Ike Phaahla spoke on behalf of SANParks. Thanks Ike, I have had only positive feedback about the way you represented the SANParks commitment to address this challenge.
We also had the privilege of Rey Thakuli being present on behalf of SANParks. To everyone of SANParks who assisted to make this possible; thank you!
After Ike and myself spoke, a little 6 year old girl named Alyssa Carter spoke. She was touched by the plight of the rhino and started selling chocolates, with her own hand drawn picture of a rhino on, to raise funds for rhino conservation. She has raised R 1700 in this way and made quite a few rand more on the day from selling more chocolates.
Her dad, Brian, has approached me to partner with us and donate all her money to us. He has indicated that they would be interested in championing a cause such as funding one dog for KNP. I have suggested to him that Alyssa becomes a "rhino champion" for us.
Please see the link to the interview they had with her after the event as well as some photos on their Facebook site: http://www.facebook.com/TheSuccessAcade
After the talks there was a breakfast. We had a number of SHR members interacting with the business people and from the feedback I have received thus far, it seems as if the opportunity was well used to promote our cause even further. Thank you to members of the NEC and West Rand who travelled far to attend.
A number of contacts were made which we will follow up in the coming days. Thus far I have been directly approached by five businesses with various ideas which we will investigate and see what transpires.
We also had two PEAP exhibitions on the day at the two business parks run by The Success Academy. This was again manned by a group of passionate SHR members, many of whom took off from work to spend the morning at the exhibitions. Thank you!
A special thank you to the members of Pretoria and the Virtual region who were there in numbers.
A special thank you to Andre Robberts (Baffers), a member of the Virtual region, who initiated this contact and played a huge part in organising everything.
One aspect which I repeatedly became aware of is how stunned people are that we as SHR do our work without compensation. We are a strange breed indeed!
This concept of exposing our cause to the business community is a definite winner and is something we should repeat in the future.
Thank you all!