After traversing 9,259km on foot and bicycle around Southern Africa for rhino, Isabel Wolf-Gillespie finally completed the marathon journey after four months and eighteen days on the road, and arrived back in Durban on Wednesday 18th September at 17:30pm.
Here’s Isabel’s final report:
I am sitting in front of my laptop with an overwhelming amount of admin to do but I am not sure where to start to be quite honest!
Normally, I write a list and tick off the boxes as I am going along but today, I feel my mind drifting off every so often and I catch myself starring out the window for I don’t know how long. Realization has not yet dawned on me but clearly I am processing something…
Just yesterday, my husband Lloyd Gillespie, my sister Raphaela Wolf, our ridgeback Mr P and I arrived back in Durban after four months and eighteen days on the road promoting the Rhino Knights campaign around Southern Africa.
Lloyd and I have worked on this campaign for over a year, pouring our heart and energy into it, and the preparation period was incredibly stressful, hitting barrier after barrier, having to battle through people’s doubts. Raising financial support and product sponsorship was almost impossible, and in the end we financed 90% of the campaign ourselves. I am exhilarated to say that despite all odds, we made it and we are very proud of what we have achieved.
On this note I want to thank those who have supported us – know that without you this campaign would not have been possible. I am going to compile a campaign report for our website in the next few days with detailed information on the route, the schools visited, the survey conducted, and much more.
For now, it is perhaps suffice to say that the Rhino Knights campaign has achieved its aim – that of educating children on the importance of wildlife conservation with the current rhino poaching crisis spear-heading the campaign. From Durban I have run and cycled 9,259 km’s through some of the most beautiful countries in the world to raise awareness for Africa’s wildlife locally and internationally.
I am originally from Germany, having only lived in South Africa for the past five and a half years. When I came to this country for the first time, I am embarrassed to say that I knew nothing about Africa, its wildlife or the current rhino situation. The challenges behind conserving these beautiful animals and their natural habitats are far greater than I ever expected.
I truly believe that environmental education from an early age, though long-term, is vital and I see myself growing this side of Earth Awareness with new found energy and vision. Amazingly I am not tired, or feel like I need a rest after the last few months – the total opposite in fact! Having had moments and time for reflection whilst on the bike or running, I can’t wait to put new projects into action.
We have lots to catch up on and will keep you in the loop on new happenings!
This week I have received an email from our German publisher with the very awesome news that our book has gone into print and will be published soon! Keep supporting Earth Awareness and stay in touch!
Isabel, Raphaela, Lloyd and Mr P
076 577 1936