The rhino orphanage
After establishing Operation Rhino, it was decided that the money we raised, we would be sending to The Rhino Orphanage in Limpopo Province, as this is where the orphaned calf of the mother who was killed at Entabeni was taken. We felt this was the best way for us to contribute and make a difference.
The Rhino Orphanage was started in 2012 by a man named Arrie van Deventer. It is the first non-commercial center in the world to specialize in the rehabilitation of orphaned or injured rhino calves. Their goal is to release the calves back into the wild once they are old enough and strong enough to survive on their own, as they no longer have their mother to rely on. Depending on how old the orphans are when rescued, they are hand-fed a milk formula and monitored 24/7. Eventually, they ween the calves off the milk and the human presence so they can adjust to minimal human contact and being around other rhinos, as they would experience in the wild. To learn more about how the rehabilitation process works, click here.
The volunteers at The Rhino Orphanage ensure that the calves receive the food, attention, and care that they need in order to thrive while the babies are in their care. One of the most important aspects of The Rhino Orphanage is not only to give the baby rhinos a space to socialize with other rhinos and develop properly, but it is also to protect them from poachers. The safety of the rhinos is of the utmost importance to The Rhino Orphanage, because the more orphans that are released successfully into the wild, the better chances their species has in the future. Learn more about The Rhino Orphanage here.
Below is a collection of photos during the rehabilitation process of the orphaned rhinos. As you can see from the photos, the rhinos are hand fed a special milk formula, socialized with other rhinos of similar ages, and given the love and attention they desperately need after suffering through the loss of their mothers. This is only a glimpse into the photos and stories that The Rhino Orphanage shares with the public. To see more pictures, learn more about what they do, and stay up-to-date on the orphanage, be sure to check out their Facebook page and website, where we were collected these photos from.