Protecting endangered species such as the Mountain Gorilla, Elephants which are hunted on a daily basis for ivory, and other animals is not only a moral obligation but a responsibility that humanity needs to address.
Monkeys on the Entebbe Club Golf Course

In December 2015, the Barcelona Legends football team visited Uganda, and played a charity match in Kampala with the Uganda legends (Retired national team stars), where Patrick Kluivert scored his best ever goal, according to his own admission.

They visited the country’s top attractions, and ventured out to see the mountain gorillas in the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park.

Barcelona striker Patrick Kluivert fell in love with the country’s wildlife, “In the short time I have been here, I have no doubt that Uganda is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. We will give you good global coverage for both tourism and investment, because you have a lot to offer.”

But while the team was visiting Bwindi Park, poachers killed five elephants in the country’s nearby Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Although these two events appear unconnected, tourists like the Barcelona Legends might be able to help fight this poaching crisis indirectly.

Hundreds of thousands of elephants have been killed in Africa over the last decade. In 2012 alone, 35,000 elephants – four every hour – were slaughtered across the continent.

According to recent statistics from the Wildlife Conservation Society, about 5,000 elephants remain in Uganda today. Nevertheless, poaching is still a lucrative business, and although governments and conservation charities are trying to address the issue, but the current efforts have been slow and painful.

A report by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) highlighted the scarcity of data on the economic value of wildlife tourism in Africa, but surveyed data from 48 government bodies and 145 tour operators from 31 African countries and concluded that poaching “threatened the tourism sector’s long-term sustainability”. However, only 50% of the operators were directly funding anti-poaching initiatives or engaging in conservation projects.

Encouraging them, and getting tourist numbers back up is vital. Jonathan Scott, who presents the BBC’s Big Cat Diary and has lived in Kenya for 40 years, says: “If the world is serious about helping to prevent poaching, we need those tourist dollars.”