Prince William, now the Prince of Wales, spoke at the United for Wildlife Global Summit at London’s Science Museum, which brought together a range of organisations committed to ending the wildlife trade, particularly focused on the international transport and financial taskforces they have set up to clamp down on the global trade in illegal wildlife products.
Prince William said, “There are still too many criminals who believe they can act with impunity, too many lives being destroyed and too many species on the brink of extinction due to this heinous crime. But there is cause for optimism. [United for Wildlife] set out to ensure that those involved in wildlife crime face an international response as powerful and coordinated as any other serious and organised crime. To bring their sinister operations out of the shadows and to ensure that communities are equipped, empowered and supported to protect themselves and their natural world.”
We at Tunza Games are big fans of Prince William and the work he is doing to protect wildlife.
To have a senior member of the Royal Family so committed to conservation and working to drive forward progress in the sector offers great hope that we will achieve more success protecting endangered species over the coming years.
And we’re also a fan because of the Prince’s support to two of our partner charities; Tusk and The Pole Pole Foundation.
Tusk offers the Prince William Award for Conservation in Africa each year, which John Kahekwa of the Pole Pole Foundation was a recipient of in 2016.
And Prince William launched the Earthshot Prize in 2021, inspired by US President Kennedy’s ‘Moonshot’ approach of the 1960s, in which the Pole Pole Foundation was chosen as a finalist in the Protect and Restore Natura Category.
Indeed, John Kahekwa and the Pole Pole Foundation have now met four of the Royal Family; Princess
Anne gave John the Whitely Award in 2013, Prince William the Tusk Award in 2016, John met Prince William, the Princess of Wales and the now King Charles and Queen Consort at COP 26 last year, and then the Countess of Wessex visited the Pole Pole Foundation team in the DRC this year.
That’s quite an impressive set of meetings for a small Congolese conservation charity, and it has a big impact; many people in the DRC feel forgotten about by the outside world, but when members of the British Royal family come to visit and support projects such as POPOF’s through their awards, it offers a great comfort and hope for not only the POPOF team but all of those they work with and support.
Prince William has said recently that high up on his wish list is a visit to see the gorillas, so who knows, maybe he will go and visit the Grauer’s Gorillas in Kahui-Biega National Park with John and the Pole Pole Foundation team one day…