2018 and still there is no way to retrieve text I copied and forgot to paste before copying another😩? Technology is failing humanity. Anyway, I had to rewrite this post. And a disclaimer, the first was funny and more interesting.
Over the weekend of 17th Feb, two of us from the group of serial procrastinators I belong to ended up at The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Orphanage to wind off. We had planned on doing a trip monthly all year long but January being Njaanuary, and being the procrastinators we are, we still had done no trip. With the hope that February was better for most of us, we had agreed on DWST. However, come Saturday, it was the same show. This however didn’t dampen the spirits of those of us who showed up.
As explained on their website as below, The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is an Elephant Rescue centre. Vulnerable Elephants are rescued from the wild, brought here and taken care of till they are able to be on their own in the wild again.
Born from one family’s passion for Kenya and its wilderness, the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is today the most successful orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program in the world and one of the pioneering conservation organisations for wildlife and habitat protection in East Africa.
Founded in 1977 by Dr Dame Daphne Sheldrick D.B.E, in honour of the memory of her late husband, famous naturalist and founding Warden of Tsavo East National Park, David Leslie William Sheldrick MBE, the DSWT claims a rich and deeply rooted family history in wildlife and conservation.
The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is located along Magadi Road, just before the Multimedia University gate. The entrance is to your right if you are coming from Galleria Mall. There is no signage to indicate the Centre’s entrance (Well, not one that I noticed🤷🏾) but there is a Kenya Wildlife Service Central Workshop sign that can help. They share the same entrance. From the gate it is about a kilometre and a half, walking distance if you ask (For non-Nairobians 😂). It’s not far, trust me…we walked our way back from there. If driving, the road is pretty easy to maneuver as you have no corners to turn into. DWST is at the very end, you will probably find a row of parked safari vans and buses as we did. There are also motorcycles at the main gate incase you are not driving and not in the mood to walk. They will charge Kes. 50.
Now, some advice I should share; GET THERE BEFORE 10.30AM! Earlier if you may. The line that was at the entrance was akin to those I used to follow in high school during ‘special’ meals 😩. You’ll wait a bit, hope you always have your patience in your travel bag. The long line is mainly due to the 11.00AM to 12 noon only visiting hours cap. Most guys arrive between 10AM and 11AM as they do not want to wait doing nothing. However, as a foster parent you can visit by appointment at 5:00pm when they return to the stockades for the night. This evening visit is for foster parents only and the date must be booked in advance of your intended visit.
Once inside, the experience is as unique as it gets. At exactly 11Am, the baby elephants are brought for a mud-bath. You watch as they play with the red soil, and sometimes may end up on the wrong side of that bath. You will have a chance to go touch them as one of the keepers gives a talk about the elephants, how they were rescued, where from, how they are progressing and the Trust’ work in general. I have to admit I heard not a word he said. The time simply flies by as you are mesmerized by these African giants. And no, I did not go touch any of them, my mama brought me up well as an African. There is a platform that has a bird’s view, I recommend. You may not feed the animals but will get a chance to view the handlers feeding them.
The DSWT is an amazing destination all of us should visit, especially those of you who have never seen an elephant up-close. Go enjoy!🐘🐘
VISITING HOURS: 11.00AM to 12.00 NOON
ENTRANCE FEE: $7 / Kes. 500
WEBSITE: David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
Thanks to photographer extraordinaire @KevinLexxy for all the photos.