We have some dynamic champions of Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF) here in Canada, and we’d like you to meet one of our most generous and energetic supporters, Jo-Anne Duval-Reynolds of Vancouver.
When Dr. Laurie Marker spent two days in Vancouver in October 2014, Jo-Anne organized a lovely reception to introduce Dr. Laurie to a whole new group of enthusiastic supporters and to raise donations. Following that encounter, she decided to volunteer at CCF in Otjiwarongo, Namibia and has just returned after having a wonderful experience there.
Jo-Anne sponsors Aurora, one of CCF’s orphan cheetahs, and being in Namibia allowed Jo-Anne to meet Aurora face-to-face, and she was glad to learn that Aurora lives up to her “feisty” reputation.
During her two weeks volunteering, Jo-Anne worked with nearly everyone on the CCF team and she sure learned the ropes by:
- feeding the cheetahs,
- taking care of the guarding dogs and puppies,
- welcoming visitors and tourists who come to see the cheetahs,
- entering vital data about the health and activities of the cheetah,
- working with the women who make the goat cheese at CCF (as shown below), and
- accompanying the cheetah keeper to feed the cheetahs that are being considered for re-wilding.
For Jo-Anne, just one of the many highlights was moving one of the older males to a new pen: it’s all done with precision and the expert use of wooden crates, and a whole lot of patience. The result? Magical!
As you can tell, tasks for a volunteer are varied and expose participants to many of CCF’s key programs. Jo-Anne tells us that she definitely learned a lot.
She also had a chance to work at the CCF creamery and share her own skills with people at CCF, including her strong selling aptitude and her business management experience.
Jo-Anne loved her experience at CCF, and in her words, “waking up every morning with the Ambassador cheetahs just outside the window” is really exciting. She got to know many of the cheetahs while she was there, and made some great new friendships. Jo-Anne returned to Canada with even more enthusiasm and is rarin’ to go as she takes on her new role as “the official ambassador to CCF” . Thanks so much, Jo-Anne!
If volunteering with CCF interests you – either in Canada or in Namibia – let us know!