Unbelievably sad news on the Cheetah Conservation Fund front! On Wednesday (October 16) a fire burned the CCF Visitors Centre, which was the location of classrooms, the newly opened Cheetah Cafe and kitchen, a staff apartment and the CCF gift shop, to the ground. It was caused by a lightning strike to the thatch roof which acted as kindling quickly spreading through the entire building. The fire was fought and contained bravely by CCF staff and volunteers. The walls are the only part of the building that remain standing with ashes still smoldering.
The CCF staff has started cleaning up the mess and is still welcoming visitors to the CCF grounds. They are considering this as an opportunity to show people "conservation in action" as they rebuild not only their iconic building but their collection of education materials as well.
When I was in Africa I worked at the Visitors Centre, I bought Coke from the gift shop and enjoyed breaks on the deck under the shade. It was a building enjoyed by visitors, staff and volunteers alike. But, who knows, maybe this fire will be a blessing in disguise and the replacement will be even better!
If you'd like to make a donation to help and rebuild go to Cheetah.org.