I am emailing to ask the biggest favour I have ever asked of anyone. My name is Rebecca Saunders (Bex) and I live in the Forest of Dean in England. All of my life I have wanted to work with people and animals in Africa. I have been given an opportunity to move to Malawi to work on a reserve. My role would be to help with research to conserve the environment, helping to protect the elephants on the reserve and working with local communities to minimise human/elephant conflicts. I have a degree in animal science and a Masters of Research in Anthrozoology (human-Animal interactions). Using this could help with the data analysis of the research they already have and with setting up other research projects to help conserve the environment, elephants and to help the local communities by minimizing negative effects and helping to involve them where possible with their local wildlife.
I have spent 6 months over the last year and a half in South Africa, learning how the running of a reserve works, important research methods for the environment and learning anti poaching techniques. I have learnt that to help with the conservation of African animals and to work with people is my absolute dream. To get the experience in South Africa I had to take out a loan. The only reason I am being offered this job in Malawi is because I volunteered in South Africa and was recommended by that reserve. Unfortunately the only reason I cannot currently take the Malawi job is because I have this loan. I have worked throughout my education and still am. This job is a once in a lifetime opportunity for all of my dreams to come true. If this would come up again then I would continue working in England and pay off my loan and then take the opportunity when I could afford to. But this is really a now or never opportunity for me to live the life of my dreams.
The job would be unpaid for the first 6 months as a trial period and then after this would be paid at a local rate. So I would never earn much money from it (enough to pay a loan off at the same time) but I am happy to live a simple life in a mud hut in Malawi if I am doing what I love. What I am asking is for you to to help me pay my loan and cover the amount I would need to make this a possibility for me; so that I can take this opportunity. This would be a total of £10,000. If you can help me with it all of it that would be amazing but if you could even do some this would help so much. If this opportunity were to not work out, or if I was ever in the position to pay this back I would. All I want is a chance to conserve animals, to help the planet and others and to live my dream.
Why should you give me this opportunity? Why do I deserve it over someone else? I don’t know. But I have worked so hard to be given this chance. And I want it to help the environment, animals and for local communities. If I didn’t exhaust every avenue I could to take this chance I would never forgive myself. I really hope you will read this and give me this chance.
Thank you so much for your time.