Konica Minolta South Africa, a division of Bidvest Office (Pty) Ltd, can today announce that it has adopted seven orphaned rhinos that are being safeguarded at a rhino sanctuary in South Africa’s Mpumalanga province.
This comes ten months after the team at Konica Minolta South Africa announced ‘The New Equation in Conservation’, a forward-thinking public-private alliance that culminated in the opening of the bizhub Conservation Academy, a conservation training centre located at the Goodwork Foundation’s Hazyview Digital Learning Campus (HDLC).
As a practical extension of the bizhub Conservation Academy’s theory-based learning, the company has now entered into a partnership with Care for Wild rhino sanctuary.
The sanctuary rescues abandoned, injured or orphaned infant rhinos, providing the facilities and necessary expertise to stabilise and rehabilitate these animals so that they might later be released back into the wild. As part of the partnership, Konica Minolta South Africa has adopted seven of the sanctuary’s orphaned rhinos, covering all maintenance costs relating to food, shelter and medication. The company will continue to contribute a percentage of every bizhub sold to this exciting new initiative.
Adult students of the bizhub Conservation Academy who are enrolled in a specialist wildlife security course will – as part of this course and sponsored by Konica Minolta South Africa – spend an internship at Care for Wild receiving tuition in animal husbandry, data collection and monitoring.
The sanctuary will also be made available to rural schoolchildren who, as part of the bizhub Conservation Academy syllabus, enjoy fieldtrips to conservation areas and wildlife protection projects.
Once the sanctuary’s orphaned rhinos have reached sub adult age, they will either be:
- Released into a breeding project on a farm adjoining Care for Wild rhino sanctuary, or
- Released onto community-owned land that adjoins the greater Kruger National Park. In both cases, and wherever possible, graduates of the bizhub Conservation Academy will be employed as rhino monitors and data capturers.
“While the Konica Minolta South Africa team is exceptionally proud to be able to contribute to the rehabilitation and ultimately the release of orphaned rhino, what we are most proud of is our commitment to a strategic South African project that includes education as well as conservation,” said Andrew Griffith, Konica Minolta South Africa’s general manager for Managed Print Services.
Andrew Griffith, Konica Minolta South Africa’s general manager for Managed Print Services at Care for Wild rhino sanctuary
About the New Equation in Conservation
The vision for the bizhub Conservation Academy is to develop a new equation in conservation. One that says: “It’s not just about saving animals. It’s about activating communities and empowering people.”
This accepted approach has been embraced by Konica Minolta South Africa, a member of the Bidvest Group and an organisation that has committed to fund and establish, the bizhub Conservation Academy in partnership with Good Work Foundation (GWF), a registered non-profit organisation delivering digital learning to rural learners and in association with: (1) The Nhlangwini Trust, owners of strategic land adjacent to the Kruger National Park; (2); Care for Wild, a registered non-profit rhino sanctuary; and (3) SANParks ‘Kids in Parks’ programme.
The bizhub Conservation Academy will become a prototype of what can happen when proudly South African corporations, conservationists, educators, technology and young people come together to create communities that are passionate about the opportunities of our wildlife.
The powerful result is that land is kept under wilderness and rare wildlife is given a safe haven.