KENYA’S BIGGEST #CONSERVATION #FUNDRAISING EVENT ‘OFF THE ROAD‘
The 30th edition of the Rhino Charge has been flagged off this morning at 7:30am with 57 entrants competing in Elangata Enterit Enkutoto, Narok County.
This followed the pulling out of the race by eight competing cars. The competition will last 10 hours.
At crack of dawn, the competing cars lined up at the start with revving engines, anxiety etched on the faces of chargers and their supporters.
Following the drivers briefing held last evening, the raffle was conducted by Tracey White, a member of the Raffle Committee in presence of Christian Lambrechts, Rhino Ark Executive Director and David Lowe, Chairman of the Rhino Charge Committee. The winners of the raffle will be announced during the Prize-giving tomorrow (Sunday, 3rd June).
The Rhino Charge, which has been held since 1989, has grown over the years in fundraising reaching KES 153 million last year. During the past 29 years, the event has raised a total of KES 1,319,219,359. Proceeds from the events have contributed significantly to the conservation of Kenya’s key mountain forests which are sources of the Nation’s water resources.
As a conservation organization, Rhino Ark Charitable Trust is deeply sensitive to minimizing any environmental impact that could derive from its operations. This extends to the Rhino Charge.
To prevent any significant damage, the duration of the competition is limited to 10 hours and only 65 competition cars may participate in the event. The Rhino Charge is also organized each year in a different location to avoid cumulative impact from consecutive events.
One of the main environmental challenges of organizing an event with close to 2,500 officials, participants and spectators in the most remote wilderness areas of Kenya is the management of waste. In keeping with Rhino Ark’s conservation mission, the Rhino Charge Committee is dedicated to leaving each venue as they found it. To this end, stringent rules have been set by the Committee to ensure that no refuse is left anywhere in the entire Rhino Charge venue. This includes a system of fines that is strictly implemented to address refuse generated by competitors and spectators. To promote refuse recycling, a Waste Sorting Station is set up at the venue. Glass, cans, tins, and plastic bottles, among others, are separated and brought back to Nairobi for recycling.
To reduce the generation of plastic waste associated with one-use plastic items, in particular plastic water bottles, the Rhino Charge organizers have provided each person coming to this year’s Rhino Charge with one metallic water bottle. These bottles were sponsored by Heritage Insurance Company and Liberty.
In addition, Rhino Ark has committed to make the Rhino Charge climate neutral, namely to offset the CO2 emissions related to the event by purchasing corresponding amounts of carbon credits on the market.
Last year, Rhino Ark purchased offsets to compensate for the CO2 emissions from the 2017 Rhino Charge from a carbon project implemented in Kenya that promotes the use of, and disseminates improved cooking stoves.