Guruji Sri Vast has been that blessing. There are many spiritual masters who would preach to liberate the soul, only a few who would really do something to connect you to the core of existence, nature. Guruji visited the center and promised to help us help Elephants; and he did, with panache.
9th Feb - “Redemption of a pledge”
Guruji, who is planting 2000 trees in his ashram land, generously donated 60 trees of the local species to be planted at our place, so that in time our girls get a sylvan and shady avenue to walk. Today, with attentive care from all, they all have survived and flourishing, hopefully they all will grow to massive trees giving fresh air, water and shade to the generations to come.
20th April - "Gratitude is a never ending attitude"
On knowing our requirement to periodically soften the floor of the enclosure ,Guruji Sri Vast has permitted us to use Sri Vast International Foundation's tractor as per our need . The elephants and the Elefriends 101 team thank you immensely for your kindness. Thank you Mr Elango and Mr Gopi for the on-site assistance.
1st May - “Gathering of the Elite”
Ms Suprana Ganguly and Dr Shiela Rao visited the center and spent time the ladies.
Steve Koyle from Elephant Care Unchained voluntarily works on establishing new relationships and building on existing ones. All with hopes of improving elephant welfare around the world. He revisited Elefriends101 after Dec 2016. During that initial visit he had given some suggestions to help improve the welfare and make things a bit easier for the mahouts. He was ecstatic to see the change.He also showed the team how to trim feet by willingness of the elephant, which is very essential.
29th May - "Officers Visit"
29th May was a very significant day in our calendar. The District Captive Elephant Welfare Committee had come for an inspection to our facility. The members included Sri S.Anand DFO Villipuram, Assistant Director ADIU Animal Husbandry Dept, Assistant Commissioner Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowment Department.
The most obvious and (unfortunately) the most neglected part of the elephant is the foot. One would think that the foot that size would be the strongest and durable. However, the reality is that it is very sensitive and vulnerable.
Keeping this in mind we at Elefriends 101 take foot care very seriously. With Saeef Ab's ingenuity and Steve Koyle 's experience , we have the new foot stool which has made the elephant comfortable during the foot care sessions.
And as the ladies move around , for their convenience we got them portable foot soak bins.
Ladies have gotten used to their new exercise regime which includes stretching their shoulders and trunk and pull out grass from the newly put up feeders engineered by Saeef Ab our honorary infrastructure engineer
On the auspicious occasion of Vijaya Dashami, Sri N. Sundaresan, Manager of the Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam, Kanchipuram and Sri Sridhar (Retd) Tahshildar Villupurum, visited the Elephant Care Facility. They were deputed by Pugiya Swamigal Sri Vijayendra Saraswati Swamigal who was camping at Villupuram and conveyed his blessings.
The team at Elefriends 101 is grateful and applauds the enthusiasm with which the volunteers participated in the activity.
Here is a comforting story we want to share about Sandhya , the eldest elephant at Elefriends 101
When the behavioral enrichment were put up about 9 months ago, because Sandhya was a weak muscled elephant, she always lifted her front foot to reach the grass.
But now, there she stands with her head held high and comfortably reaching the grass.
Thank you again Elephant Care Unchained for this wonderful piece of advice.