The Celebrities of Save Animals-Democratic Republic of Congo
With the 2020 grant from AKI, Save Animals in the Democratic Republic of Congo became our 1st and only grant recipient to receive an AKI grant for 3 years in a row. This year with the AKI grant, they are creating 5 episodes (one episode/month over 5 months) of their popular Save Animals Universe TV show. The show is aired on a local channel, twice a week, and all episodes are also available on YouTube (see below).
According to a friend who has lived in Kinshasa, "Save Animals Universe is very popular. There are very few locally produced television shows in Kinshasa. On the weekend, everyone anxiously looks forward to watching Save Animals Universe."
Most importantly, Save Animals Universe is introducing a pet care culture to the DRC, where dogs and cats are more commonly considered food. The luckier ones are used for guarding (dogs) and rodent catching (cats). Only recently have people begun keeping cats and dogs as pets, as family members.
To create some of the material for Save Animals Universe, SA-DRC holds an event, usually organized by an Animal Ambassador, and filmed as part of the week's show. Often the event will involve a walk through busy parts of Kinshasa with dog companions to raise awareness of dogs and cats as pets and to denounce eating cats and dogs. Three Animal Ambassador activities have so far been filmed for the 1st episodes (see pictures below):
First event by Djodjo Diwete on August 1st
Second event by Boa Benaja on August 15th
Third event by Tegra Tambwe on September 5th
Landyl and Nouria are the hosts of Save Animals Universe, and I think you'll agree, they do a great job. The 1st Save Animals Universe show focused on World Rabies Day and an Animal Ambassador awareness raising event. You can watch the show here........
On September 12nd, Save Animals and environmental NGOs held a protest march against the killing of an okapi by poachers. The marchers demanded that the killers be held accountable. The 2nd show focused on the protest march and World Okapi Day (October 18), celebrating this beautiful animal (see picture below). The episode serves as a reminder to Congolese and the authorities that the okapi is the country's wealth and it must be protected.
The okapi, also known as the forest giraffe, Congolese giraffe, and zebra giraffe, is native to the northeast DRC. It is most closely related to the giraffe.
September 13 protest against the killing of an okapi and the groups' request to hold the poachers accountable:
Stay tuned for more of Save Animals Universe to come!