Celebrating the opening of the Wildlife Discovery Centre
Yesterday was a momentous day for David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF) and our long-standing partners Game Rangers International (GRI) as we attended the opening ceremony of the new Wildlife Discovery Centre in Lusaka National Park, Zambia.
Born from a lasting wish of our founder, David Shepherd CBE, to bring environmental educational and awareness to the people, children and communities of Zambia; this world-class Centre is a blueprint for immersive, interactive and first-class conservation education.
The opening ceremony was hosted by the country’s Minister of Tourism, Rodney Sikumba, and included heartfelt speeches from GRI’s Founder, Sport Beattie, and CEO, Jonathan Churcher – as well as some kind words from the British High Commissioner to Zambia, Nicholas Woolley.
Guests enjoyed a stunning performance by the Zuba ni Moto dance group before immersing themselves in the various interactive displays and exhibits on offer in the Explorertorium and Discovery Huts. They were also able to catch a glimpse of the newly relocated orphan herd from the quiet safety of the Elephant Viewing Hide – a truly memorable experience for all.
It was our founder, David Shepherd’s, long-lasting friendship with Zambia’s First President, Dr Kenneth Kaunda, and their deep love of wildlife that inspired this exciting new education hub and a planting of trees took place in their honour where both families were invited to bless the saplings.
“To be here in person to honour my grandfather’s legacy and our friendship with GRI, the Department of National Parks and Wildlife (DNPW) and the people of Zambia was an inspiring, moving and emotional day. What the team on the ground here have built, thanks to the generosity of DSWF’s amazing supporters since his passing in 2017, is truly breath-taking. Aesthetically, the centre is stunning with its vibrant murals, colourful visuals and weaving conservation narrative which take you on a journey of discovery, but more than that it tells a story of why nature, wildlife and the wilderness must be protected at all costs. It’s a homage to the wild.” – Georgina Lamb, Chief Executive at DSWF
Education has always been, and will continue to be, a guiding principle in DSWF’s environmental work and you can find out more about this here.