Being an animal activist can take many forms, but it is rare that we have the opportunity to stop cruelty first hand. Last year I had the opportunity to do just that.

I traveled to Kenya last fall to do a safari with my father and volunteer at an orphanage with my friend Leigh. While researching a safari company for the trip, I received a recommendation to connect with a local animal activist named Samson who owned a safari company called Kujua Adventures. We became fast friends because of our love of animals, and I learned he sometimes brings visitors to participate in de-snaring retreats he puts together for local activists. I was all over this idea!

He pulled together a group and hired a local ranger — then out into the bush we went! We stayed in tents in the park and even had wild hyenas come through the camp site. The next day we headed out early looking for snares which are harder to find than one would imagine. There are low neck snares for animals like gazelles on walking paths. There are ground snares for animals like zebras to catch their hooves, and there are high tree snares for giraffes to catch their heads.

We found countless snares and even ripped out yards of barbwire buried to catch animals while they are crossing the road. It was exhilarating to know every one we pulled saved a life.

Although there was certainly a chance we could come across poachers in action and have been in a dangerous situation, I felt safe with the ranger and team.

Since this experience, I encouraged Samson to package up some programs specifically for people who want to come to Kenya to help animals — contact him at Kujua Adventures.

Samson and his team can put together a custom program to fit your budget and timeframe. I highly recommend this experience. I have been on three safaris and nothing compares to the experience he prepared for us. Thank you Samson!