In June of 2015, we signed the final paperwork for a stunning 2800 acre property in Chapada dos Guimarães. This nearly 2800 acres will be the future home of Elephant Sanctuary Brazil. The land is essentially two valleys, running east to west, with a mini-mountain in the middle. The northern portion is undulating terrain that slopes up to a cliff-face that is more than 50 ft. straight up, a perfect natural barrier. The primary valleys have several small nooks and gullies that filter in from all directions. A stream runs through one valley and a small river runs through the other. Countless springs originate on the property as well, providing pristine water for elephants, trees and the abundant wildlife already living in sanctuary.
We returned to the property, to map out where the first elephant corrals would be built, and fell in love with the property a little more. With every new field we walked, every hill we hiked and every clearing we arrived upon we just kept thinking how much the elephants were going to love it. There isn’t one single thing that nature hasn’t provided this piece of paradise with. It’s not just streams, ponds, trees and grass; it’s a mix of soft, waist high natural grasses that beg to be touched and cultivated dark green pasture grass packed with nutrients. Springs that are so clean and fresh that 4 bottling companies reside in this little town. Streams and rivers that are big enough to bathe and play in, but small enough to not be overwhelming to older or sick elephants. Nooks and crannies to explore, steep hills for the adventurous girls or the big boys and gentle slopes for napping. Wonderful palms that provide food for macaws and countless other wildlife, mixed with numerous indigenous varieties of fruit trees and hardwoods that offer a 10-degree temperature drop once you enter the shade of their canopy. When you are on the property, all you hear is the birds and bugs and all you smell is fresh dirt and green foliage. It is pleasing to every one of the senses and phenomenal in every way.
All it needs now are the elephants; and we already know there are many waiting in South America that could never dream of having a home like this. For that we will need your help. It will take all of us to make that dream a reality. It is not enough to just want elephants to live a life of sanctuary, we have to work to create that life for them.
In order to be able to begin rescuing elephants, we will need to complete Phase One of development on the property. This first phase has a cost of $450,000, which may be reduced drastically if we are able to receive a donation of pipe, that will be used for fencing (the biggest expense of ESB). This development will enable us to immediately accommodate 4-6 elephants comfortable, depending upon species, gender and compatibility. Phase One includes the construction of 2 adjoining 20-acre corrals, a 2-stall elephant medical care center with a positive reinforcement training area and restraint corridor for any necessary medical procedures. It also covers human security fencing and cost of machinery and other necessary infrastructure. The property already includes 2 modest homes to allow for caregiver to live on ground, providing 24 hour care and security.
To help us offer elephants like Ramba, Rana and many others, a life of sanctuary, as quickly as possible, please donate to our “Giving Ground to Elephants” campaign. Where your gift will literally go to giving elephants new ground under their feet and to give them a new life.
Phase One is just the beginning. Once it is complete, we will continue to build fences until all 2800 acres are available for the elephants to explore.
We have a long and exciting road ahead. To learn more about what is next check out stages of development. Please follow our progress on Facebook and check back frequently to follow the blogs on our website. You can also keep on top of international elephant news and read our little blurbs on Twitter and check out photos of our progress and meet some elephants through our Instagram page.