As the World Female Ranger Week (June 23rd-30th, 2022) Spiked Online Media shines a spotlight on Nokuthul a ranger with Akashinga in Zimbabwe.
Below, Nokuthula shares her story:
When I heard that the IAPF – International Anti Poaching Foundation – www.iapf.org was looking to recruit female rangers, I thought to give it a go, it sounded like a great opportunity since I had no formal education completed or any job prospects lined up.
After a long application process, I was thrilled to hear that I had been selected as one of the new Akashinga recruits. Finding out that I had been successful was a game-changer for me because the work and responsibilities of a ranger are a pathway to my passion of one day becoming an ecologist. Being a ranger has opened my eyes to the possibilities of making this dream a reality, I have access to resources I didn’t have before, including the opportunity to be mentored by individuals in our Habitat unit here at IAPF.
My role as an Akashinga Ranger has been nothing short of amazing and in many ways inspiring. Being the youngest ranger has not limited or clipped my wings, instead, it has enabled me to flourish as I was recently appointed as a Stick Leader. A Stick Leader is someone who is put in charge of a small group of rangers and facilitates training drills. It is a position I embrace and has helped me earn the respect of my colleagues.
I could not finish high school because my parents were unable to continue paying fees, and my prospects quickly became limited as I come from a small village called Chitindiva in Zimbabwe. It is common for most young girls to drop out of school due to falling pregnant or failing to pay school fees.
When the opportunity to become an Akashinga ranger came along, I was thrilled by the opportunity and used it as a chance to build a better life for myself.”
👉 To support Nokuthula and her team, visit https://www.worldfemalerangerweek.org/fundraisers/internationalantipoachingfoundation