Alresford Adventurer With a Mission
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Meet the Alresford Adventurer With a Mission – whether it be skydiving from Mount Everest, climbing it, riding horseback in Mongolia – or elephants in Alresford! David Cradduck meets Holly Budge on her mission for meaningful change.
‘How Many Elephants’ is an exhibition that you may have already seen at White Space in Alresford:
“About 10 years I started working with vegetable ivory from a palm tree in the South American rainforest – it’s almost the same texture as real ivory, and it just led on to anti-poaching awareness in Africa: “It’s an awareness campaign to let people know just what is happening, but it’s also raising funds for anti-poaching projects in Africa.
Holly is taking her exhibition to China later this year, the largest users of ivory in the world. But of course she doesn’t do it by halves, and wants a bit of adventure too: “I’m going to hike the Great Wall. All of it – 3,00 miles to raise further awareness.
Holly is overwhelmed by the reaction to the Alresford exhibition: “I’ve had nearly a thousand schoolchildren through the doors, and just seeing young minds introduced to a new idea, a new way of thinking – it’s been great to see their minds working.”
Holly also told David that people have been very generous: “I’ve had a huge donation from Alresford Rotary and others too. I’m very grateful.”
‘How Many Elephants’ normally shows 35,000 elephants, the amount poached in a year. Holly says that 96 elephants are poached every day in Africa. Because the White Space is so big, the exhibition shows shows 100,000 elephants: “That’s 3 years’ worth of poaching. Four are highlighted in red to show the hourly rate. I’ve tried to make it shocking only by the use of numbers, not gory images. Extinct by 2025.”
She says she knows she can’t save the world single-handedly, but she thinks she can change a few minds: “Some of the children didn’t know this was happening. Proof of what the exhibition can do.”