With support from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, ElefantAsia's Lao Elephant Community Awareness Programme Phases I and II have brought about increased environmental awareness amongst the rural people of Laos living with or in the vicinity of populations of wild and captive elephants.
With particular emphasis placed on increasing environmental awareness among the youth and local communities in Laos, ElefantAsia implemented a vast array of activities under the LECAP programme.
Activities included the creation and distribution of environmental resources such as an elephant conservation storybook and posters, an anti-poaching poster and a photographic coffee table styled book, as well as the creation of an elephant museum and photograph exhibitions.
In 2011, ElefantAsia hosted a human-elephant conflict (HEC) mitigation workshop in Vientiane, bringing together national and regional experts to discuss the problem in Lao context. Elephant specialists travelled from Nepal, Sri Lanka, Cambodia and Thailand to meet with government officials and representatives from NGOs such as IUCN, WCS and WWF to find solutions to remedy the growing issue of HEC in Laos.
Perhaps the most inspirational activity under this programme, one guaranteed to tug at those heartstrings, lies with our Mobile Elephant Libraries. Completing over 20 'book parties' to date, ElefantAsia partnered with Big Brother Mouse and latterly with Room to Read and Community Learning International to deliver Lao language storybooks and learning materials to remote rural schools in Laos using retired logging elephants. Activities at participating school focus on the need to conserve the elephants and their natural habitat, whilst the elephants themselves become ambassadors of literacy, as each pupil receives, in most cases, their first book from a disarming trunk.
To learn more about ElefantAsia’s Mobile Elephant Libraries or support this action please visit here [link to EML project]