Ford Wildlife Foundation Supports the Delta Environmental Centre with New Ford Ranger
The Ford Wildlife Foundation (FWF) handed over a new Ford Ranger to the Delta Environmental Centre to support its Youth Environmental Services Project, which is recruiting 270 unemployed youth to be involved in various environmental activities. The handover forms part of Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa’s (FMCSA) commitment to the conservation and preservation of the environment in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Established in 2018, and fully funded by the Department of Environmental affairs, the project will provide employment for 270 youth on a short-term basis. Participants will get accredited training (short skills programme) in waste management activities, provide environmental services to communities in the townships of Gauteng, engage community-based institutions such as schools in the community, community organisations, members of the public and participants will be assisted in attaining further employment, additional training or registration of co-operatives after one year.
“There is increasing pressure being placed into the natural environment largely by human activities, this makes environmental issues very complex. These issues cannot be resolved by one organisation,” says Malusi Vatsha, Executive Officer for the Delta Environmental Centre. “This partnership, which includes Delta, the Department of Environmental Affairs, and Ford, is a good example of how organisations can come together to help resolve pertinent environmental issues.”
How Ford Will Support the Project
The Ford Ranger will help Delta staff travel to project sites, most of which are in townships. This will allow Delta staff attend to attend to project queries, be it in host schools or with the Department of Environmental Affairs, as well as stakeholder engagements.
“The vehicle will also be used in implementation of environmental activities such as tree planting and education and awareness campaigns,” says Vatsha.
The locally-built Ford Ranger, which is one of South Africa’s top-selling vehicles overall and in the light commercial segment, will be used to enable the project to go further and make a real impact – particularly in the remote locations often associated with conservation and environmental projects.
Ford Wildlife Foundation Dedication to Conservation
For the past 30 years, FMCSA has been actively involved in the conservation of wildlife and ecosystems in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa. To date, FMCSA has invested almost R40 million to support more than 170 conservation projects. In 2014, FMCSA established the Ford Wildlife Foundation (FWF) – a body that consists of FMCSA, members of Ford’s dealer network, and experts from the wildlife conservation sector.
The Ford Wildlife Foundation is unique as it does not provide a cash donation to the conservation projects it supports, instead Ford’s partner organisations are equipped with Ford Rangers. The vehicles provided are used to help project operations, such as transporting field equipment, helping vets reach sick or poached animals, or translocating the animals themselves. The vehicles operating in all Ford Wildlife Foundation projects are monitored and serviced by Ford’s extensive dealer network to ensure they operate at peak efficiency.
The FWF has invested R8 million in vehicles and vehicle services to support 23 conservation projects in South Africa. In 2017 alone, Ford Rangers at a total value of R5.3 million have been handed over to partner organisations to support their work in the field.
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