Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Lions get a Royal Premiere

Wednesday April 25, 2012 in aid of TUSK at BFI SOUTHBANK
Attended by: Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge
and from the film: Keith Scholey and Alastair Fothergill (Directors), Alix Tidmarsh (Producer), Simon King OBE (Cameraman) and Sophie Darlington (Cinematographer)

An epic true story set against the backdrop of one of the wildest places on Earth, “African Cats” captures the real-life love, humour and determination of the majestic kings of the savanna. Narrated by Sir Patrick Stewart, the story features Mara, an endearing lion cub who strives to grow up with her mother’s strength, spirit and wisdom; Sita, a fearless cheetah and single mother of five mischievous newborns; and Fang, a proud leader of the pride who must defend his family from a rival lion and his sons.  An awe-inspiring adventure blending family bonds with the power and cunning of the wild, Disneynature brings “The Lion King” to life on the big screen in this True Life Adventure directed by Keith Scholey (“Big Cat Diary”) and Alastair Fothergill (“Earth”, “Deep Blue”).  
AFRICAN CATS will be released nationwide on April 27, 2012

About TUSK
Tusk Trust is a dynamic organisation, which has 20 years experience initiating and funding conservation and community development programmes right across Africa. Supported by UK celebrities such as Rory Bremner, Ronnie Wood, Griff Rhys Jones, Joanna Lumley, Ruby Wax, Zoe Ball, Ben Fogle, Deborah Meaden, Kate Silverton and Alistair McGowan, the charity’s work to deliver direct sustainable conservation has been widely covered on television and in the media. In 2005 Prince William became the charity’s Royal Patron.

Since its formation in 1990 by Charles Mayhew MBE and Sir Timothy Ackroyd Bt., Tusk has earned a reputation for being non-bureaucratic and for maximising donor funds (on average 80% of net funds) reaching the field. The charity has supported more than 100 projects and invested over £16 million into the field.

Tusk’s current portfolio of 40 field projects spread across 17 African countries is designed not only to protect wildlife, particularly endangered species, but to help alleviate poverty and encourage sustainable development and education amongst many poor rural communities who live alongside wildlife. Conservation of wildlife remains a key objective with substantial funding being applied towards the protection of many threatened species such as elephant, rhino, cheetah, chimpanzee, mountain and lowland gorillas, African wild dog, giant sable and even marine species like turtles.

As the ever expanding human population and its demand for more land brings it into increasing and often disastrous conflict with wildlife, Tusk’s aim is to forge an inextricable link between the preservation of Africa’s natural heritage and the future of its land, culture and peoples and one that seeks to engage global support for a vision that will bring about an end to such conflict through education, job creation, and ultimately self-sufficiency.

Tusk has, with its project field partners such as the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in Kenya, been at the forefront of establishing and promoting community driven conservation programmes. The charity’s holistic approach recognizes that the long-term future for wildlife is dependent on education and sustainable development. A number of the charity’s initiatives therefore incorporate work to improve environmental education, security, healthcare, and responsible tourism. One such programme managed by the Northern Rangelands Trust and supported by Tusk has seen three million acres of community land come under a common conservation policy with initiatives that are directly and simultaneously benefiting 150,000 people and a significant wildlife population in northern Kenya.

Tusk strives to provide practical, logistical and financial support to a diverse range of projects. In the past this has included the purchase of vehicles, aircraft, radio equipment, as well as the construction of primary and secondary schools, clinics, water improvement schemes, roads, buildings, bridges and airstrips, as well as covering the direct costs of rangers. The charity enjoys a reputation for being financially efficient with an average of 80% of the net funds raised reaching the field.

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