Forgotten Parks Foundation

Christelle at Upemba National Park, supporting World Female Ranger Week

This is Christelle, a 23-year-old female wildlife ranger at Upemba National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The pictures above display Christelle during the recruitment process and now.

 

Christelle has always been driven to work in a man-dominated field, and when the opportunity to work as an ICCN (the Congolese institute for the conservation of nature) ranger for Upemba National Park presented itself, she did not hesitate to join. Additionally, being an athlete and playing many sports because of her good physical abilities, she did not feel challenged and didn’t doubt that she could be as good as a male ranger.

For the longest time in the world, and specifically at Upemba National Park, the hard and dangerous work of being a wildlife ranger has always been seen as a man’s job and not suitable for women. But Christelle went against the odds and she is now one of the three female rangers in a team of 247 Wildlife rangers.

 

At first, she was asked many questions from her family and community about her choice of work of being a ranger, considering the hard training and activities the work comes with and she was told that the job was only well suited for men. But with time, they have seen how she has impacted her community and now she receives appreciation for the job she is doing and is constantly encouraged to keep going despite the challenges.

 

“I needed to be financially independent to help support my family and having this job is a great opportunity to be that person and support my mother, while safeguarding and protecting local communities and wildlife. Joining the team of rangers has inspired not only women from my community, but also young men, and it has also given them hope to aspire to do the same.”, Said Christelle.

 

Despite the motivation and hard work, the lack of resources and tools to operate has been a very big challenge for Upemba rangers, and being a minority in a team of men, female rangers are often overlooked and not provided with suitable uniforms, raincoats, boots, and all other necessary equipment.

 

With more support dedicated for Female rangers, we would be able to provide necessities for our current female rangers and recruit more female wildlife rangers to create a more diverse team of wildlife rangers at Upemba National Park.

 

We appreciate your support!

Wivine Tumba Wa Ilunga at Upemba National Park

Hi, my name is Wivine, I have dedicated my life to protect the integrity of Upemba National Park in the Republic Democratic of Congo. I participate in patrols to stop poachers who are destroying wildlife at the park, and I contribute to safeguarding the environment and communities. Being one of the few female rangers in a team of men, my fellow female rangers and me are often overlooked due to us being a minority and are often given inappropriate uniforms and equipment that don't fit us because they are customised for men. To do our job efficiently, we would appreciate your support.

We're fundraising for World Female Ranger Week

In support of World Female Ranger Week, we’re fundraising for female rangers and would love for you to help us reach our goal! 

Through their patrols, snare sweeps, dedication, and skill, female rangers are protecting wild animals and putting a stop to poaching. 100% of the funds raised will go directly towards the needs of female rangers, ensuring they have the facilities, tools, and support they need to do their jobs effectively and safeguard wildlife and wilderness areas.

Will you show your support? 

Together, we can support female rangers, protect wildlife, and create positive change.

Our Team Members

Hear about the female rangers and their mission to save wildlife.