Throughout March, WildAid is shining a spotlight on some of the incredible women in conservation who are working tirelessly to protect wildlife across Africa.
Doyinsola Ogunye is the founder of the Mental and Environmental Development Initiative for Children (MEDIC) involved in the rescuing of sea turtles on the shorelines of Lagos, recycling of plastic wastes, and cleaning of beaches.
The lawyer turned conservationist is also involved in advocacy through the Kids Clean Club, Kids Beach Garden and Kids 4 Clean Seas initiatives, where she teaches young children about the importance of protecting the environment.
Ogunye has been rescuing endangered sea turtles and cleaning the beaches in Lagos since 2009. Sea turtles are found on these beaches because they are good grounds for nesting. Unfortunately, the sea turtles are often captured by poachers and taken to the bushmeat markets to sell.
“I have always loved the ocean. Living close to the beach made my love for the ocean grow. When I realized we had sea turtles in Nigeria, I started to do research and I found out that there was so much to do to protect wildlife in Nigeria and that’s why I started the Sea Turtle Sanctuary at the kids beach garden.”
Ogunye, who loves sea turtles, wants to see more women in wildlife conservation, but she is worried there is a lack of support and encouragement, especially from family. “Most women who have a career in wildlife conservation do so because of their passion and strong will. Most people believe it’s a man’s job and give little regard to women doing the same.”
She feels it is extremely important to protect wildlife.
“The wildlife provides us with a natural balance and stability. Protecting wildlife ultimately means protecting our very existence and that of the generation unborn,” she said.
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WildAid is a non-profit organization with a mission to protect wildlife from illegal trade and other imminent threats. While most wildlife conservation groups focus on protecting animals from poaching, WildAid primarily works to reduce global consumption of wildlife products such as elephant ivory, rhino horn and shark fin soup. With an unrivaled portfolio of celebrity ambassadors and a global network of media partners, WildAid leverages more than $308 million in annual pro-bono media support with a simple message: When the Buying Stops, the Killing Can Too.
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