Volunteer of the Month, January 2022

BRIGHT OLUNUSI

My name is Bright Olunusi, a serving corp member serving at the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Osun State.

My passion for biodiversity conservation began during my second visit to the University of Ibadan Zoological Garden while at the higher institution. I was thrilled sighting the exquisite animals held at the Zoo. Though they appear scary due to their countenances and ferocious teeth, it was superb scenery.

Unfortunately, some of the animals I saw on my first visit were no longer present at the zoo. When I inquired, the tour guide then explained that the zoo lost some of the animals and are having a hard time replacing them due to the rapid decline in some of the wildlife species caused by anthropogenic activities.

Following the development, my hunger to protect and conserve these beautiful species augmented. For this reason, I decided to pursue a degree in Wildlife and Ecotourism at the University of Ibadan. During my practical year training program as a 400 level undergrad, I had an experiential knowledge of how the National parks in Nigeria suffer enormously from the impact of human activities on the wildlife population and distribution. It is evident in the number of wildlife (Particularly the flagship species) I sighted during my 6-month stay at the parks.

Whist my expectations of the National Park was deadened, the sordid experience charged me to develop a sense of responsibility and commitment to contribute my quota towards advancing biodiversity conservation in Nigeria and beyond. Hence, the desire to join the Wildlife of Africa Conservation Initiative (WACI).

So far, I have learnt a great deal through the several weekly wildlife blogs sent to the page, as I am eager to participate in other activities WACI is planning for this year and in the future to promote wildlife conservation.

Finally, I would like to thank the Founder of WACI for creating this brilliant network of like-minds working for a common cause. You have been such an inspiration to a lot of us. We hope you’ll continue to do more for our precious wildlife. And also to the other members, you guys are doing great.

Together we can achieve more.