Pagodas join forces to urge Vietnamese to stop consuming wildlife products

People visiting some pagodas in HCMC have recently seen statues of rhinos, elephants, and pangolins kneel in prayer to Buddha. This campaign, called “Be their savior”, is carried out by WildAid and CHANGE in coordination with the pagodas to urge Vietnamese people to protect these three species.


Pagodas join forces to urge Vietnamese to stop consuming wildlife products, Vietnam environment, climate change in Vietnam, Vietnam weather, Vietnam climate, pollution in Vietnam, environmental news, sci-tech news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam

The rhino kneels with its horn cut off, the elephant bows with broken tusks, and the mother and baby pangolins cower with missing scales 


According to WildAid, over 1,000 rhinos, 33,000 elephants, and 100,000 pangolins are poached every year for their horns, tusks, scales, and meat due to unfounded rumors of their medical values. Such practices have pushed these species to the brink of extinction.

The campaign aims to raise public awareness about the devastating impact of the wildlife trade and call on the Vietnamese people to stop buying and consuming wildlife products in order to save endangered species.

Pagodas and Buddhist institutes that join the campaign include Vinh Nghiem Pagoda, Minh Dang Quang Buddhist Institute, and Khanh An Monastery in HCMC, and North Tay Thien Pagoda in Vinh Phuc Province.

Venerable Thanh Thich Phong, head of the Charity Department of the Buddhist Sangha in HCMC, said rhino horns, elephant tusks and pangolin scales do not have any medicinal value.

“Statues of the elephant and the rhino praying to the Buddha is meant to ask for our mercy and plead to people to change their attitudes. Buddhist monks and nuns must have love and tolerate all animals by not killing living beings, wearing ivory beads, using rhino horns, or eating pangolin scales and meat,” he said.

“We hope people will take the suggestion of this campaign to help save endangered wildlife by making their commitment to stop buying and using any wildlife products, especially rhino horn, ivory, and pangolin scales and meat,” said John Baker, WildAid’s chief program officer. “We applaud the pagodas and the Buddhist monks for helping to spread this message.”

The animals pray to the Buddha at Khanh An Monastery in HCMC’s District 12

In addition to animal statues, the campaign also further garners attention with the placement of public service announcement messages in movie theaters, on TV, on video screens in taxis, hospitals, banks and shopping centers, and placement of billboards.

Primarily composed of keratin, the same protein found in human hair and fingernails, rhino horn has no unique medicinal properties, according to WildAid.

In the past few years, CHANGE and WildAid wildlife campaigns have played a vital role in reducing the demand for illegal wildlife products in Vietnam. The price of rhino horn has fallen from US$65,000 per kilo to around US$22,000 per kilo; rhino horn sales have been banned; and more people are aware of the false claims about rhino horn’s medical efficacy.

A 2016 survey conducted by WildAid, African Wildlife Foundation and CHANGE in Vietnam showed that just 23% of respondents believe rhino horn has medicinal effects compared with 69% in 2014. Only 9.4% of respondents believe rhino horn can cure cancer, down from 34.5% in 2014, a 73% decline.

SGT

Pagodas join forces to urge Vietnamese to stop consuming wildlife products, Vietnam environment, climate change in Vietnam, Vietnam weather, Vietnam climate, pollution in Vietnam, environmental news, sci-tech news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam
 
*
*
*
  Send