I Fostered a Baby Elephant, Tong Jan

Tong JanYesterday was Blogger’s Unite, a day to do something good for some aspect of society. With so much need in the world, I was not really sure where to start, so I decided to start with a baby elephant, Tong Jan.  

Tong Jan Foster CertificateI fostered her after reading her sad story before she came to Elephant Nature Park, and after learning how she was rescued when she was three months old. As  life-long lover of elephants, I always wondered at them from afar. They seemed magical and majestic, yet after digging a little further (and previously fostering another elephant, Max), I learned that elephants can be particularly needy and savagely abused. Their size can certainly hide their amount of mistreatment.

I did not plan to foster another elephant before the holidays, but it was the challenge of Blogger’s Unite that got me to consider doing something, even minor, to help make the world a better place.  

I Fostered an Elephant, Max

I recently read a story that got me teary-eyed; one about abused and mistreated elephants in Thailand that have been rescued by a young woman who goes by the name Lek. She founded Elephant Nature Foundation, a non-profit organization that serves the needs of suffering elephants in Thailand. I first read about her in Wildlife Conservation magazine, the publication of the Wildlife Conservation Society (Bronx Zoo, Central Park Zoo, NY Aquarium, et al.).

I spent a few hours looking around their website, and was shocked to learn how brutal people are to elephants in Thailand. I have always had a fascination with elephants, but never knew how vulnerable they really are in the wild and even after being pressed into service.

Max, the elephant I fosteredI decided I had to get involved and do something, so rather than just send a donation, I took advantage of their novel program to foster an elephant. Much more interesting than sending a check, and while they encourage visits to the park, I cannot get to Thailand in the near future. Thus, I fostered Max, an 11-foot tall elephants who was rescued by the park a few years ago. I am looking forward to getting updates about him over the next year, and feel that I am helping, even in a small way, something much greater than me.

If you have not donated anything during the holiday season yet, consider supporting the wonderful work at Elephant Nature Foundation; they even have a U.S. tax ID.

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