Part of the herd
After David Attenborough’s latest show ‘Seven Worlds, One Planet’ hit our screens on 27 October 2019, Milly Bowen, a Consultant for Waterman’s infrastructure & environment team in London, made the decision to throw her support behind the ever-increasing threat to the Sumatran, Javan, Black, Greater One-Horned and White rhinos.
With two and a half rhinos being killed every day, resulting in two species now recorded to have fewer than 80 animals left in the wild, Save the Rhino International are a charity who are working to prevent the habitat loss and illegal poaching of these beautiful giants in order to give them a fighting chance for survival. By actively working to educate people on their care and applying extensive anti-poaching security, they believe rhinoceroses could be saved from extinction within the next 20 years.
As a budding environmentalist, Milly explains; “The poaching of rhinoceros has reached crisis point and three of the five species are now critically endangered, meaning they face an extremely high chance of extinction in the wild. Watching David Attenborough standing alongside the last two northern white rhinos (who are both females, therefore the last of their kind) really struck me and I wanted to raise awareness and help towards this incredible charity.”
As part of her team’s Christmas Jumper day on 20 December, Milly decided to go for a more striking alternative and contacted Save the Rhino to borrow one of their iconic emblems – the rhino costume.
Originally designed in 1989 by Gerald Scarfe for a musical called Born Again, the one-metre wide horned regalia are mostly recognised for their appearances during the marathons in London, Paris, Boston and New York. Having travelled around the world to raise awareness of the on-going issues the species are facing due to the over-poaching of their horns, the charity’s Founder Patron, Douglas Adams, even wore one of the costumes to the top of Kilimanjaro in 1994.
With a real-life rhino weighing between 500 – 2,500 kg, the 12 kg costume is a fraction of the size but none the less challenging to carry around for the whole day. Milly said; “It was a lot of fun wearing the suit as I commuted to work, you can imagine the looks I got, but it was really heavy. I want to keep going to try and raise more money for Save the Rhino, hopefully joining the rhino runners for a marathon or half marathon, so it’ll be interesting to see how that works out because it was hard enough walking.”
Milly raised £109 towards this life-saving cause. If you would like to learn more about Save the Rhino, you can visit their website by clicking here.