Daphne Sheldrick Biography
Daphne Sheldrick Biography
Daphne Sheldrick Biography
Daphne Sheldrick Biography
Daphne Sheldrick Biography
Daphne Sheldrick Biography

Daphne Sheldrick Biography

Influential Animal Right Activists

Daphne Sheldrick

Born: 12 April 2018, Nairobi, Kenya

Known for: Wildlife Trust Conservation

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About Her

Dame Daphne Marjorie Sheldrick, DBE (née Jenkins; 4 June 1934 – 12 April 2018) was a Kenyan of British descent, author, conservationist and expert in animal husbandry, particularly the raising and reintegrating of orphaned elephants into the wild for over 30 years. She was the founder of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

Early Life of Daphne

Daphne Jenkins was born in Kenya in 1934 to British parents, at a time when Kenya was still a British colony. Her parents, Bryan Jenkins and Marjorie Webb Jenkins, operated a large farm and timber operation in Gilgil, Kenya. At the outbreak of World War II, her father, a naturalist, was sent to a game reserve where he was ordered to kill zebra and wildebeest to feed British and Kenyan troops. In 1940, at age 6, she went to visit her father's camp and later remember thinking, "This is how I would like to live, out here among the animals under the sky."

She was educated at Nakuru Primary School and Kenya High School where she matriculated in 1950 with honours and the possibility of a bursary to attend university; however, she opted for marriage.

Sheldrick Wildlife Trust

After 17 years of marriage, David Sheldrick died on 13 June 1977 at the age of 57. Following her husband's death, Daphne Sheldrick continued her dedicated conservation efforts. Sheldrick and her daughter, Jill, cared for a seeming continuous succession of orphaned elephants and rhinos. As a result, the David Sheldrick Memorial Appeal, a project of the African Wildlife Project, metamorphosed into the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust in 1987; becoming an independent non-profit organisation. Embracing the conservation, preservation, and protection of wildlife in Kenya, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust - renamed in February 2019 to honor Daphne and the whole Sheldrick family - today operates the most successful orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program in the world. It works alongside Anti-Poaching Teams, Mobile Veterinary Units, Aerial Surveillance, and a Sky Vet initiative in partnership with the Kenya Wildlife Service. Other projects which aim to safeguard the natural environment and enhance community awareness include Saving Habitats and Community Outreach projects.

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